“I hear Joe Buck is gonna rip off Jimmy Kimmel’s “Uncle Frank” bit by dragging “Poppa Jack” out, writes Baseball Think Factory’s Repoz. “although unionized casket wheelers might put them over budget!” From TV Blend’s John Constantino :

According to Broadcasting and Cable, Fox has shot a pilot featuring their lead football and baseball announcer, Joe Buck. The plan is for him to host a half-hour, weekly talk show with incorporates comedy interviews and a small studio audience (almost like the concept of the original Later, which was hosted by Bob Costas).

Although the show is planned to be once a week, the project shows the commitment Fox has to taking a shot at late night programming by 2009, when a huge shake-up in the after 11:30 landscape will take place. 2009 is the year when Jay Leno is œsupposed to retire from The Tonight Show, and hand the reigns over to Conan O™Brien. But if Jay won™t give up his show (which all signs are pointing to), Conan would be paid a penalty for $45M and would be free to chase a deal at another network. So even if they don™t give Joe Buck a show, they have to give the appearance that they want a late-night show, just to be a contender in a potential O™Brien sweepstakes. But if NBC can secure the both of them, Fox could always fall back on Buck.

But is Buck really a good fall back position? Admittedly, the guy isn™t known for his ability to get big laughs. The only time I can really even remember him being funny is when he said œSlama-Lama-Ding-Dong in those Budweiser commercials. And giving a talk show to someone who™s main claim to fame is sports never goes well (Costas eventually gave up his Later slot, and we won™t even go into The Magic Hour).

I realize Joe Buck’s not a very popular guy with this blog’s readership, but I’ve often argued he’s every bit as talented as Rick Dees and Alan Thicke. If Charles Perez could host a successful chat show, why not Joe?