Andrew Catalon is still feeling the effects of jet lag after arriving back in the Capital Region on Saturday following his work for NBC’s Winter Olympics coverage in Sochi, Russia.
But the former WNYT (Ch. 13) sportscaster won’t have to leave the country for his next plum assignment.
On Tuesday, Catalon was named to the CBS Sports/Turner Sports announce team for its NCAA basketball tournament coverage in March. He will call second- and third-round games with analyst Mike Gminski and reporter Otis Livingston.
This is the first time that Catalon will call games in the NCAA tournament. He replaces Tim Brando, who left CBS last month.
Catalon, who calls college football and basketball for CBS Sports Network, doesn’t know where he will be for the games The sites for the second and third rounds are Buffalo, Milwaukee, Orlando and Spokane, Wash.
“I’m so honored and excited,” Catalon said. “I remember being in high school and trying to sneak a free period to watch the Thursday noon games. To now be calling those games, it’s an incredible thrill. I’m so pumped.”
When Brando, who along with calling some college basketball games also hosted CBS’ college football studio show and had a sportstalk show on CBSSN, departed, it opened a spot for someone to get the NCAA assignment. Catalon didn’t think about that situation too much.
“They gave me a couple of games on CBS in January, which was great. That helped me work with some different analysts and get the feel of what their pacing is like, as opposed to CBS Sports Network because it’s a little different. I didn’t know how this was going to turn out. I’m really excited that they went with me.”
Catalon will work with Gminski on Saturday’s Memphis-Louisville game on CBS. The game will be seen in the Capital Region on WRGB (Ch. 6) at 2 p.m.
“I’ve never met [Gminski] before, so I’m glad and really relieved that we’ll be able to do together before the tournament,” Catalon said. “That will be a huge help.”
As for the Winter Olympics, Catalon enjoyed his time in Sochi a lot more than he thought he would.
“I had a blast, to be honest,” Catalon said. “It was the most fun I’ve had at an Olympics. The way the venues were all so close together, I saw a bunch of hockey games. I went to the women’s hockey gold-medal game, which was disappointing at the end, but a great atmosphere. I got to see more people than usual because everything was so close together. The security, you didn’t have to worry about that. They did a great job of keeping us safe.”