By Paul Kurtz
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — On Tuesday night, the Philadelphia Jewish Sports Hall of Fame will induct nine new members, including radio and TV sportscaster Howard Eskin.
Over the past four decades, Eskin has carved out a reputation as a controversial talk-show host and dogged reporter who bent the rules of convention.
“I’m not just a guy that sits on an anchor desk and reads,” Eskin says. “I’m a reporter and that’s the way I was kin of brought up through the business is to be a reporter, anchor, whatever it takes, because it’s a sense of accomplishment if you get something before somebody else.”
Early on, he got the scoop on beat reporters enough times to get the attention of Channel 3. His crossover to television was also unconventional, as he remembers his first day on the job.
“September 20th, 1982, I remember the date,” Eskin says. “I’m scared to death. 51 minutes, I’ll never forget, I’m looking at the clock, before I go on the air, the NFL players call a strike. Now, from just doing a sportscast my first time I’m the lead story of the news. My Gosh, you’ve got to be kidding me.”
Eskin’s career will now be showcased in the Philadelphia Jewish Sports Hall of Fame. He’s being inducted alongside eight others, including former Philadelphia mayor and Pennsylvania governor Ed Rendell. He’s the Hall’s “Pillar of Achievement” honoree.