No sports on TV? Sportscasters share play by play of confinement.

The dog park, folding laundry, and even afternoon snacks have all become more exciting in days of quarantines. Out-of-work sportscasters are bringing drama to the mundane to the cheers of bored sports fans everywhere. 

The race is tight. The two contestants are head to head, not even feet away from each other, almost making contact. "Here they come they have completed lap number 5," the sportscaster announces. "You've got Lexi in the lead, Louie trying to track her down...."

It almost sounds like NASCAR has returned. But alas, most sports events are still on hold.  

Since March, college and professional sports have canceled, temporarily suspended, or delayed their seasons – the National Basketball Association, the National Hockey League, the Major League Baseball, the Major League Soccer, the NCAA, and more – leaving not only the fields and stadiums empty, but our television sets as well. 

To fill their programming, TV networks had to get creative amid these cancellations by running infomercials and rebroadcasts. 

And networks aren't the only ones trying to adapt. Sportscasters were suddenly left with nothing to comment as well. But that didn't stop Josh Lewin, an American sportscaster who works as a play-by-play announcer for the UCLA Bruins football and basketball teams, who decided to put his talent to work from his home. 

In short videos, amassing thousands of views, shared on his Twitter account with the hashtag "PlayByPlayofAnythingAtAll," Mr. Lewin describes the play by play of the mundane daily activities of his confinement. From folding towels fresh out of the laundry, to emptying the dishwasher, to serving ice cream, Mr. Lewin brings a breathless commentary to household routines. 

The videos started to add up and can now be found on a YouTube channel dedicated to play by plays of anything at all.

Others are joining the trend on social media, using their time away from the booth to provide entertainment to the heartbroken sports fans around the globe. Mike Bagley, an announcer for the Motor Racing Network switched from race cars to dogs for a doggie NASCAR race around his pool. Fox announcer Joe Buck also shared a play by play of a heartwarming interaction between his wife and his son, as well as narrating fan-submitted videos.

By simply picking up their phones and pressing the recording button, sports announcers are reconnecting with sports fans everywhere.

“Boredom and anxiety are kind of a weird cocktail,” Mr. Lewin told the Los Angeles Times. “It’s both of those emotions right now, so I’m finding that just doing something in the creative space kind of helps both of those items along a little bit.”

Editor’s note: As a public service, the Monitor has removed the paywall for all our coronavirus coverage. It’s free.

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