Six degrees of Monday Night Football

“Dandy” Don Meredith has died. The former NFL quarterback was better known as one of the original broadcasters on the iconic Monday Night Football.

Looking back at the first MNF broadcast is a good reminder that that was a heck of a long time ago, when broadcasters even passed one microphone to the other.

Monday Night Football may well be best known in history as the place where people found out 30 years ago Wednesday that John Lennon had been killed.

How did that historic broadcast come to be? Mere coincidence.

  • . ESPN producer Jeff Ausiello says Alan Weiss, a news producer for ABC’s New York station, had a motorcycle accident and was in the hospital Lennon was brought to — “and was plopped down next to him.” Weiss didn’t recognize Lennon, but overheard local police officers identify him — and then heard efforts cease in the room where Lennon was being treated. Weiss called his station, says Ausiello, but couldn’t go public: “They had to pass on the story of a lifetime — they knew they had to pass it on to the big fish at ABC.”

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