Bill Mazer Biography
Bill Mazer was an American television and radio personality. He won numerous awards and citations, including three National Sportscasters and Sportswriters Association’s Sportscaster of the Year awards for New York from 1964–66. Considered a New York institution in sports reporting, He was inducted into the hall of fame for the Buffalo Broadcasters Association (1999), Buffalo Baseball (2000) and the National Jewish Sports Hall of Fame and Museum (1997). He is also recognized as the host of the first sports talk radio show in history that launched in March 1964 on WNBC (AM).
Bill Mazer Age
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Bill Mazer Height
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Bill Mazer Family
Mazer’s family left Kiev, emigrating before his first birthday. He grew up in Brooklyn, New York. A graduate of Yeshiva University High School for Boys, he received a BA at the University of Michigan for premed before being drafted. During World War II, he served the majority of his time in the Armed Forces-Air Force Transport Command in the Pacific theatre.
After returning home, he married Dora Sudarsky (“Dutch”), his pre-war sweetheart. They had three children. Their marriage lasted 50 years until Sudarsky’s death from cancer on April 28, 1996. The New York Knickerbockers observed a moment of silence during their May 1, 1996 Playoff game. He never remarried.
Bill Mazer Education
He grew up in Brooklyn, New York. A graduate of Yeshiva University High School for Boys, he received a BA at the University of Michigan for premed before being drafted. During World War II, he served the majority of his time in the Armed Forces-Air Force Transport Command in the Pacific theatre.
Bill Mazer Career
Mazer’s broadcasting career began in 1942, broadcasting in Grand Rapids, Michigan before joining the United States Military that same year. His career as a sportscaster began in Buffalo, New York in 1947, where he signed on as a sportscaster on WKBW. In 1947, he was also the commercial announcer on the CBS William L. Shirer Newscast, as well as the commercial announcer for the soap opera, When a Girl Marries. By 1948, he had also become the sports director for WGR radio and served as a principal sports anchor for WGR-TV from the time that station signed on in 1954 through the early 1960s.
Mazer dominated the airwaves in Buffalo, broadcasting the hockey and baseball Buffalo Bisons, the All-American Football Conference Buffalo Bills and Little 3 Basketball. With years of play-by-play and sports commentary in Buffalo under his belt, Mazer arrived in New York City in 1964 when WNBC (AM) went to its first all-talk format. His show was one of the pioneer examples of the modern sports talk show in America. After filling in for Hugh Downs on the NBC game show Concentration, he was given his own show, Reach for the Stars, in January 1967, but the show was quickly canceled. Mazer also filled in for segments of Monitor, even hosting on occasion.
National sportscasting and announcing
Mazer served as a color analyst and intermission host, working alongside Dan Kelly on CBS’ National Hockey League coverage from the late sixties until the early seventies, broadcasting the Stanley Cup playoffs a few times. Golf was another Mazer specialty on NBC, including the U.S. Open and Bing Crosby tournaments in the mid-1960s. ABC used Mazer for its regional New York football lineup in the late 1960s. Mazer also did sideline reporting for CBS coverage of the NFL in the late 1960s.
During the 1960s and 1970s, Mazer did much voice-over commercial work, from L&M Cigarettes, Kodak, Ford automobiles to Trident chewing gum, among many others.
Mazer was a sportscaster at New York’s WNEW-TV (Metromedia Channel 5) for twenty years, ending in the early 1990s. He also co-hosted the program Sports Extra, which originally teamed him up with Lee Leonard and then later with Brian Madden (1976–78), respectively. Sports Extra is also considered to have been the first “sports wrap-up” show of its kind.
While doing sports for The 10 O’Clock News on WNEW in the late 1970s and ’80s, he held a daily contest where a viewer would send in a question to “stump” Bill and would win a prize if he or she did. Usually, the submitted question was asked by anchorman John Roland.
Bill Mazer Net Worth
Information concerning his net worth is still under research and will soon be updated immediately we come across details about his net worth.
Bill Mazer News
By NEIL BEST
Bill Mazer, a sports talk radio pioneer and later a fixture on New York sports television known for his encyclopedic knowledge of trivia, died Wednesday at 92 after several years in failing health.
Perhaps Mazer’s greatest historical claim to fame was as host of the first regularly scheduled sports call-in show — which premiered on WNBC radio on March 30, 1964.
In what is believed to be his final interview, with Newsday in 2011, Mazer looked back at that day and how it all began.
“The first call was a kid, and he said, ‘I just want to ask you one question,’ ” Mazer said. “I said, ‘OK, go ahead.’ He said, ‘Who’s better: Willie Mays or Mickey Mantle?’ ”
It was a question that launched countless more, leading eventually to the first full-time sports talk station, WFAN, in 1987, and eventually hundreds of others around the country.
Mazer was a logical candidate for the job. He had spent 16 years in Buffalo — a job he landed with the help of a fellow future sportscasting star, Marty Glickman — but he grew up a Dodgers fan in 1930s Brooklyn after moving there from Ukraine as an infant. He was invited home to host a late-afternoon show as part of WNBC’s new “Talk-Back” format.
“I said, ‘What do you want me to do?’ ” Mazer recalled telling the WNBC executive who made the inquiry. “He said, ‘It’s going to be sports talk.’ I said, ‘Are you kidding?’ ”
The concept was an immediate hit, Mazer said, fueled disproportionately by teenage boys who called in seeking his opinions. Dozens of those boys, now in their 60s, responded to Newsday’s story about him in 2011, and called into WFAN late Wednesday afternoon to reminisce.
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Mazer went on from that early talk show to become a trivia expert so well regarded he was nicknamed “Amazin’,” and he still was able to answer almost every arcane question posed to him in 2011 despite extreme hearing problems.
Mazer’s long, varied career began in 1941 when he replaced a fellow Michigan alumnus, Mike Wallace, at WOOD in Grand Rapids.
After returning to New York from Buffalo he was Channel 5’s longtime sports anchor, and also co-host of “Sports Extra,” a pioneering highlights show that appeared late on Sunday nights, and still does.
Mazer for a time hosted a show on WFAN that originated from Mickey Mantle’s restaurant on Central Park South. He recalled having Mantle himself on and recounted the story of that first caller back in ’64.
“Then I said, ‘Let me ask you something: Who’s better, Willie Mays or Mickey Mantle?’ ” Mazer said. “He said, ‘Truly, Willie on an everyday basis was better. But the year I won the Triple Crown , I was just as good.’ ”
Mazer’s wife of more than 50 years, Dora, whom he called Dutch, died in 1996. He is survived by a son, Arnie, and two daughters, Francine and Beverly, as well as two grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.