Friday, May 20, 2011

the last game for Jim Leahey?

"I don't know what the future holds," said Leahey, who has served as the narrator of University of Hawaii sportscasts for nearly three decades.

KFVE's contract with UH expires next month, but this past Sunday's baseball game was the station's last live UH telecast after a 27-year run.

With Oceanic Time Warner set to take over production and distribution of UH sportscasts this summer, the future of KFVE's crew is uncertain.

At this time in past years, he would rest before getting ready for the start of the football season in a few months.

"Now you don't know," he said. "I don't know what's going to happen."

Calling sporting events is part of Leahey's DNA. His father was trailblazer Chuck Leahey; his son is KHON sports director Kanoa Leahey, who also is a play-by-play announcer for Oceanic's high school football games. Of his own decorated career, Leahey said: "Names and describing games."

He said he is prepared for the possibility that he called his last UH sporting event.

"I think if it's over, well, I did the best I could for as long as I could," Leahey said. "It's like driving in a race. You go as far as you can, and then when it's over, it's over. You cannot control it. Everything is temporary. Everything ends."

***

[10/18/11] University of Hawaii basketball, already practically a Leahey family franchise, will go into its 47th year of three-generation association with the sportscasting family.

Kanoa Leahey will do play-by-play for men's games and his father, Jim, will do Rainbow Wahine games on Oceanic Time Warner's OC Sports this season, it was announced Monday.

Kanoa, who has done Diamond Head Classic games the past two years for ESPN, will be joined by analysts David Hallums and Tony Sellitto. Hallums played for the Rainbow Warriors (1987-88) and Sellitto was Hawaii Pacific University's head coach (1988-02 and 2008-10).

Jim Leahey will be joined by Lori Santi on Rainbow Wahine games.

The Leahey family has been doing UH basketball games since 1964, when Jim's father, Chuck, began doing the Rainbow Classic, which he and Red Rocha pioneered, on the radio. Jim worked with his father on radio in the late 1960s and began doing them on TV in 1978 and continued with KFVE from 1984 through last season.

"He (Kanoa) has accepted the passing of the torch," Jim said. "He's very good at it, excellent in fact, and ESPN has been very impressed with his work."

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