Big Dawg Sports Talk returns to the airwaves after 10-year hiatus

Published: Jul. 31, 2020 at 9:52 PM EDT
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RADFORD, Va. (WDBJ) - If ever there was a worst time to get into sports radio- you might think it would be right now, when sports are almost non-existent. However, that’s exactly why Rick Watson is coming back on the air. He’s known around the New River Valley by a different name.

Beginning Monday morning, you may hear a familiar intro streaming over the WRAD airwaves.

“You’re listening to Big Dawg Sports Talk with Rick Watson!” the announcer hypes.

“A DJ I used to work with on one of our other stations dubbed me that when I did a morning sports roving report and it just kind of stuck,” Rick Watson, aka “Big Dawg,” said.

For 10 years in the early 2000s, Watson’s voice carried folks home from work in the afternoons.

“In 2004, we were the show that actually broke the news that Virginia was voted on to be in the ACC,” he said proudly.

He left radio in 2010, but stayed in the area, raising his family and working as the director of broadcast at Radford University.

“We do a lot of TV stuff,” he said talking about his role broadcast Highlander sports.

But something was missing.

“I’m a radio guy,” he said.

So when the opportunity came, he stepped back up to the plate... or mic.

“I guess I just missed it.”

Even though the country is in the midst of a pandemic and sports are few and far between, especially local sports.

“With everybody being so isolated. Everyone being quarantined. People had their jobs being taken away. People get so frustrated.”

Sports is a great reprieve.

“With all the turmoil going on, sports to me has always been a family, a unity,” he said. “And it doesn’t matter where you’re from, what you look like, anything like that, that’s still very prominent.”

Watson and his producer, Logan Brown, are here to help people navigate life without sports.

"It's affected a lot of people, sports being pushed back. The kids, the parents."

And get them ready for sports’ inevitable return.

“Hopefully we can help with some healing process, get things back to normal,” he smiled. “Kind of help people have a little bit of an outlet and feel good, hopefully, for a little part of their morning.”

The Big Dawg Sports Talk show will debut Monday, Aug. 3 at 6 a.m.

You can find all things “Big Dawg” on the show’s Facebook page.

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