Who is Cory Provus (and why is nobody talkin’ about him)?
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For those Brewers fans who choose to listen to each and every game on the radio (or for those who smashed their plasma screens after the Padres series), one man rules the roost: Bob Uecker. The silver fox of the Brewers’ broadcast booth has been going strong for over 40 years—calling every game, stumping for Usinger’s Sausage—and shows no signs of fatigue. But what about the yin to Uecker’s yang, the Goofus to his Gallant, the Smithers to his Mr. Burns, the Higgins to his Magnum, P.I.? Yes, Uecker’s partner-in-crime, Cory Provus, deserves some love, too.
Now in his third season as the play-by-play announcer for the Brewers Radio Network, Provus has quickly proven himself to be not only a more-than-capable announcer, but a perfect foil for the oft-unpredictable Ueck. Smooth, confident, and unflappable, he may be the best wing-man since the heady days of Pat Hughes. (No offense, Jim Powell.) Still, few people seem to give Provus the credit he deserves. Here are a few quick reasons to love the guy.
We’ve got to hand it to Provus—the man was born to be a radio announcer. Wielding a smooth, velvet baritone, Provus is a play-by-play man through and through, no doubt to the delight of shadowy producer Kent Sommerfeld. Back in 2007, the Highland Park, Illinois native was the host of the Chicago Cubs pre- and post-game shows, and also backed up—guess who?—Pat Hughes. But since relocating to Milwaukee, he’s become a distinctly homestate vocal presence, and can make even the most rote pre-game bro-down with Craig Counsell seem strangely compelling.
He laughs at Uecker’s jokes (a lot)
It’s no secret the being a Brewers radio announcer means playing second fiddle to the dry comedic genius of Mr. Baseball. (Witness the almost complete lack of Jim Powell during Uecker’s infamous extended musings on “Furries.”) Early in his tenure, Provus was too much of a straight man, and seemed unsure whether to laugh, stay silent, or quietly weep every time Uecker went off on a tangent. But as the 2011 season has progressed from, “It’s still early!” to, “Can we start worrying now?” it’s become clear Provus has learned to yuk it up no matter what Ueck says. He’s also become quite the comedian himself: During a recent “Let’s Answer A Random Text Someone Sent Us” segment, Provus joked that during his downtime, he takes care of Uecker’s laundry.
He handles the insane amount of sponsorships like a pro
It’s a sad sign of the times that nearly every second of a Major League Baseball broadcast is sponsored by a random company. For the Brewers Radio Network, that means listeners have to suffer through countless US Cellular calls to the bullpen, hundreds of Kwik Trip trips to the mound, and over a dozen other things brought to you by Hank, Hardware Hank. Thankfully, Provus has proven himself surprisingly adept at handling these endless, unwieldy plugs, and makes sentences like, “Let’s tack on some Northwestern Mutual insurance runs!” seem like the most natural thing in the world.
He says “aforementioned” a lot
This isn’t really a reason to love the guy, but it’s true—he says “aforementioned” an awful lot. The next time you tune into a game, listen for yourself. There—now you’ll never hear another broadcast the same way again. You’re welcome!