Dale Hansen on retirement: “A piece of me dies when I do this.”
Dale Hansen, shown in a photo from his WFAA / Channel 8 biography, has been with the station since 1983 and is known for his dull comments. On Tuesday, he announced his plans to retire in September.
Since Ellen DeGeneres announced that she was quitting her show, it makes sense that it should be her good friend Dale Hansen, too.
The big man with the bigger mouth, who has been with DFW for 38 years, is retiring.
(To the uninitiated, Hansen appeared on the Ellen Show in 2014 after his comment on Missouri’s defensive end, Michael Sam, who is gay, went viral.)
The WFAA in Dallas announced Tuesday that Hansen was ready. Dale’s first show on the station was March 28, 1983. His last is scheduled for September 2, 2021.
“I’ll be damned. This is the end of the TV dinosaur era here,” said former sports columnist Randy Galloway of Dallas Morning News and Fort Worth Star-Telegram on a phone call. “I don’t think you’re in any other big one TV market would have an old fat bald white guy who’s been very liberal on the air for so long. Hansen has survived and thrived all these years. “
Hansen returned a call shortly after the announcement.
“I’m looking for reasons not to get on the treadmill to make this work great,” said Hansen. “I’m not afraid [of retirement]but I’m not looking forward to the next big event in my life, I can tell you.
“One of the reasons I’ve stayed here for the past few years is just that. I think a piece of me dies doing this. Maybe the best part of me. “
Sources said Hansen originally wanted to extend his run with the WFAA but had some structural editorial disagreement with management. Instead of staying, he simply decided to end a historic term.
“It is true that I have had these differences of opinion for about 38 years. That was a small part of it, ”said Hansen. “It wasn’t anything special. There was nothing that couldn’t have been worked out if I wanted to work it out. I did not. … I’ve been working on a check for the past few years. “
Dale’s last interview with cowboy owner Jerry Jones is going to be a must-have while watching TV. No one in this area has suppressed Dale’s hatred more than Jerry.
Hansen’s resignation is the slow continuation of the departure of our most recognized and successful men who have been involved in the Dallas-Fort Worth sports since its inception in what would unofficially be the birth of the Cowboys in 1960.
Men like Blackie Sherrod, Frank Luksa, Jim Reeves, Galloway, Norm Hitzges, Eric Nadal, Brad Sham, Scott Murray and Mike Rhyner.
The rest of us try like hell to be these guys, but … we’re not.
“The biggest compliment I can give Dale is that I wish he had retired 10-15 years ago,” said Mike Doocy of KDFW Fox 4. With Hansen’s departure, Doocy becomes DFW’s longest sports TV Moderator.
“When I first got here in 1994, he was the dominant figure in the sports media in this market, and keeping that for all these years is just amazing. I’m not happy to say that as a competitor. I’m also realistic about what a great voice he was and remains. It’s so rare to put together a career like this, especially in a market. “
What you saw on your TV with Hansen’s comment is not a shtick. He’s openly apologetic, often leftover from Nancy Pelosi, and drives viewers to the point where the broadcaster receives complaints – and threats – about Hansen.
With his unique delivery and opinion, Hansen drove reviews.
People the hell hate Dale Hansen. People are fucking watching Dale Hansen.
The guy won every award except a Tony.
In the 1980s, his interviews and investigations into the SMU soccer program eventually led to the NCAA launching The Death Penalty program.
During the 1990s, Hansen was part of the Dallas Cowboys radio broadcast team for 10 years. It’s not every day or every decade that the team’s radio analyst openly criticizes the team’s owner.
“It’s true what you watch on Channel 8 is what people get from the air,” said Hansen’s partner with the Cowboys, the team’s longtime radio voice, Brad Sham.
“Dale would never try to be an analyst in the traditional way. He would do it the Dale way. But to say he didn’t care about this job would be a false assumption. He took great care of it. “
Hansen’s tenure with the Cowboys ended in 1996, not long after he had a heated debate with then coach Barry Switzer.
The confrontation was uncomfortable TV gold when Dale called Switzer to his lies and Switzer brutally attacked Dale in return. There were two kicking mules locked in a closet.
After Dale left the Cowboys, he eventually added his résumé with brief tenures as a presenter on a radio show on ESPN 103.3 FM and other locations.
In recent years the station has given him a wider platform. His leading articles on social issues, titled “Unplugged,” have often made viral hits.
He says his editorial on Michael Sam “changed my life”.
“I came into the station and they said,” You went viral “and I thought,” I’m fine, “said Hansen.” I didn’t know what it meant. “
Hansen also cites his friendship with WFAA weatherman Pete Delkus as an important reason why he stayed on the air with the station.
For the past five years as men like Rhyner and Galloway retired, there was considerable speculation about when Hansen would leave.
“Well, now you know,” he said. “I wanted to make sure my finances were in order and if not … I’ll be the greeter at Walmart and tell you where the hammers are.”
Mac Engel is an award-winning columnist with 20 years of extensive sports experience in the Fort Worth-Dallas area. He has covered high schools, colleges, all four major sports teams, as well as the Olympics and the world of entertainment. He combines dry wit with first-person coverage to add an almost unfair head of hair.
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