Madden Won't Confirm $30m Fox Deal

Posted: January 22, 1994

DALLAS — John Madden is not signed, sealed and delivered to the Fox network.

USA Today reported yesterday that Madden, longtime CBS broadcasting partner Pat Summerall and their CBS production crew were set to start working NFC games for Fox next season.

The paper said Madden reportedly agreed to a $30 million, four-year contract with Fox on Thursday.

But Madden, in Dallas to cover tomorrow's NFC Championship Game between the Cowboys and San Francisco 49ers, would not confirm the report.

"I don't have anything yet," he said yesterday. "Nothing is done, nothing is signed. I want to wait until after the game."

Tomorrow's game will be the finale for CBS, as well as Madden and Summerall. The two have worked together for 13 seasons.

In a stunning surprise last month, Fox bid $1.58 billion for the rights to NFC games for the next four years, outbidding CBS by about $400 million. The move will force CBS out of pro football for the first time since 1956. NBC will continue to televise AFC games.

In the last few weeks, Madden, acknowledged by many as TV's No. 1 pro football analyst, reportedly has been bound for ABC's "Monday Night Football" and NBC as an analyst. The NBC deal reportedly would include Madden's serving as spokesman for General Electric, which owns NBC.

"That one had me as worldwide spokesman for General Electric; I don't know (about that)," Madden said in the lobby of his Dallas hotel.

Madden's agent, Sandy Montag, also declined to comment on the USA Today report.

USA Today said contract figures for Summerall's contract were not available. Summerall also covers golf and tennis for CBS.

If true, the Fox deal makes sense for Madden, because he likes working with people he is familiar with.

"He knows all the people on the crew," said Steve Gorsuch, technical director for all 13 years with Madden and Summerall at CBS.

Earlier this week, Madden said he hoped to settle his TV future "quickly and quietly". Yesterday, Madden smiled and said, "The second que has had the bleep knocked out of it."

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