TV sportscaster Dave Owens comes to play every night with his game face on. When he’s done, he leaves it all on the floor. He takes it one show at a time. Had enough? Magically working the sports desks for both FOX 30 in Chico (10 p.m.) and KRCR Channel 7 in Redding (11 p.m.), Owens does not rely on tired clichés to highlight his show. Funny, smart and articulate, the 32-year-old Owens ad-libs his own ESPN-like metaphors and similes, cracking on a hot evening, “Sports, the only way to cool your palate,” describing a bloop double by Barry Bonds, “Barry goes snap, crackle and a little pop” or a homerun “jacked” by a Detroit outfielder, “Rondell White, tell the bartender, ‘Hey Jack!’ “ Keep an eye on him; we predict he’ll get drafted to a bigger market any day.
Do you get down to Chico much?
You know, I don’t. I’ve been down to Chico one time. Actually, I had to go down there and throw out the first pitch at a Chico State baseball game. That was a while ago, so I don’t get down there just because of my schedule.
It’s kind of confusing, now that FOX has its news, you get the feeling that you guys are broadcasting from down here.
I guess we pull it off pretty well. We produce it all in Redding and we just kind of change the backgrounds a little bit and the format and we go with it.
Do you change your part of the show much?
The only change we do, the philosophy being that at 10 o’clock it’s FOX and Chico, if there is a local story, Chico State or something, we would focus on that first, versus if it was at 11 o’clock and it was Shasta College and Butte College. We’d go Shasta first and then Butte. So it doesn’t change that much; the Giants are still Giants, and the A’s are still A’s.
Do you guys change your clothes?
Sometimes we don’t. The time in between 10 and 11 ain’t much.
Where are you from?
I’m from Detroit, Mich. I was actually born in Trenton, N.J., in 1972, and my parents moved us to Southfield, Mich., right outside of Detroit, in 1977, and that is where I grew up.
You were in the military, right?
I went to high school in Michigan, and I got an appointment to the Naval Academy in Annapolis, Md., went there for four years, graduated in 1994, got a commission in the Navy and started my military career in San Diego. Stayed six years and served on board two ships—deployed a couple times overseas, including the Persian Gulf. You know how it is in the military, man, you name it and I’ve been there.
You are obviously a smart guy if you got an appointment.
I had two roommates at the academy who were just academically gifted. One guy must have scored 1,500 on his SATs. This guy could pull a rabbit out of a hat and tell you the physics behind it. I was the kind of guy who could read it once, read it again, keep my nose to the grindstone and get a B minus and just keep moving on.