Omaha, Neb. — Sept. 13 event promises to be one for ages with illustrious group of roasters
As a longtime broadcast voice for the Nebraska Cornhuskers during a career spanning more than four decades, Kent Pavelka has thrilled generations of fans with his exciting calls of basketball and football games.
Now, it’s his turn to be entertained.
Pavelka will be honored Sept. 13 as the Omaha Press Club’s next Face on the Barroom Floor when he will be skewered by an illustrious group of roasters that could set a record for the most laughs ever at a Press Club event. The roasters include two past Faces (Larry the Cable Guy and Gary Sadlemyer), Nebraska Basketball Coach Tim Miles, and Matt Davison, the Husker who made the “Miracle at Missouri” catch on a pass from Scott Frost in 1997.
“I’m certainly aware of the great honor that comes with being a Face on the Barroom Floor,” Pavelka said. “I am truly humbled that the Press Club has decided to include me on this stellar list. I’m just afraid that I’ve given the roasters too much good material over the years. It could be brutal.”
The event is open to the public. It will begin at 5:30 p.m. with a reception. Dinner will be served at 6:30 p.m. with the roast starting around 8 p.m. Cost for the event will be $50 for members and $60 for non-members. Reservations can be made by calling 402-345-8008 and providing your credit card information or your Press Club account.
The Press Club will be closed from July 22 to Aug. 13 for its annual summer vacation for the staff. People can still make reservations online during this time period by going to the front page of the OPC website and clicking on the promotion box for the Pavelka Face event.
A native of Lincoln, Pavelka will be the 158th Face on the Barroom Floor, a Press Club tradition that began in 1971 when then Omaha Mayor Gene Leahy was the inaugural Face honoree.
Pavelka graduated from Lincoln Northeast High School in 1967 and the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in 1971. After doing high school and college games over three years in Fremont, Neb., Pavelka joined the Husker broadcast team in 1974, serving as a color analyst from 1974 to 1983 and as play-by-play announcer from 1984 to 1996.
His football broadcast partners over the years included such legends as Lyell Bremser (Face No. 21, 1982), Jack Payne (Face No. 53, 1993) and Gary Sadlemyer (Face No. 115, 2008).
He has been the lead announcer for Nebraska basketball for 31 seasons and will return to the microphone in 2018-19 for what promises to be one of the more talented teams in Husker history. Last year, Nebraska finished with a 22-11 record, including a 13-5 record in the Big Ten – the most conference wins ever by a Husker basketball team.
Three talented seniors – James Palmer Jr., Isaac Copeland Jr. and Glynn Watson Jr. – are expected to lead the Huskers in 2018-19 along with junior forward Isaiah Roby.
“I’ve been blessed to call some memorable games over the years,” Pavelka said. “Call me an eternal optimist, but I have to say I think this shapes up to be a season to remember for Nebraska basketball.”
In addition to all his sports announcing, Pavelka has been a fixture on Omaha radio, serving as a morning show host/operations manager for KFAB-AM (1110) from 1974 to 2001 and as morning show host for KKAR-AM (1290) from 2001 to 2005.
Since 2006, he has run his own company – Kent Pavelka & Associates – providing his on- camera/voice talents and advertising/marketing skills to a number of clients. For the past 12 years, Pavelka also has hosted the TV show, “Metro & More,” for Metropolitan Community College. His TV work also includes hosting “The Tom Osborne Show.”
Among his numerous awards, Pavelka is a six-time winner of the Nebraska Sportscaster of the Year Award, a Special Merit Award recipient of the Nebraska Basketball Hall of Fame, a Hall of Fame member for the Nebraska Radio Personalities and KFAB Radio, and a recipient of the from the Communication Achievement Award from the University of Nebraska at Omaha.
A past president of the Omaha Sportscasters Association, Pavelka has been a studio host on the St. Louis Rams Radio Network and been a sideline reporter for Fox Sports Midwest and the CBS Radio Network.
All-star cast of roasters
The roasters lined up for the Sept. 13 Face on the Barroom Floor event for Kent Pavelka could possibly be the most celebrated slate of roasters in the history of the Omaha Press Club.
The roasters will include:
· Larry the Cable Guy (aka Dan Whitney), comedian/actor – Face No. 113, 2007;
· Tim Miles, Nebraska men’s basketball coach;
· Matt Davison, Nebraska associate athletic director-football, Husker football radio analyst, former football and basketball player for Nebraska, and longtime basketball broadcast partner of Kent; and
· Emcee – Gary Sadlemyer, KFAB-AM (1110) morning show host and longtime KFAB partner with Kent — Face No. 115, 2008.
“Kent is a great choice,” said Woody Bradford, president of the Omaha Press Club. “He’s a household name for any Nebraska sports fan. The roast should be terrific – people pay big money to see Larry the Cable Guy perform – and the other three roasters are fantastic in their own right. I have no doubt it will be a night to remember at the Press Club. I can’t wait.”
By the numbers
Kent Pavelka has spent his illustrious career behind the microphone painting pictures of what is transpiring on the court/field. His name is synonymous with the Nebraska Cornhuskers. Over the past 44 years, he has broadcast:
· 992 Nebraska basketball games over 31 seasons (1974-75 – 2017-18 with 13 seasons off);
· 257 Nebraska football games over 22 seasons (1974-1995);
· Combined total of 1,249 Nebraska games and will surpass 1,000 Husker basketball games in the upcoming 2018-19 season;
· More than 1,000 total games for Midland College, Fremont High School, Fremont Bergan High School and Omaha high schools at the beginning of his broadcast career.