Despite a torrent of complaints from viewers around the country about the verbal excesses and melodramatic style of Howard Cosell during the World Series telecast, officials of ABC Sports said yesterday they had no intention of relieving him of the assignment.
They said they believe his abrasiveness contributed to rather than detracted from the viewers enjoyment of the broadcasts. ABC conceded that the calls about Cosell had been very heavy and virtually all negative.
A lot of people said they turned off the sound and listened to radio coverage. Ratings were substantially higher this year than they were last year when the games were televised on NBC. Nationally, the opening game drew 50% (!) of the prime time audience.
“That’s Cosell. People have strong reactions to him, but for all their complaining they watch him and seem to enjoy disliking him. It’s not our style to give into this kind of criticism and pressure. We think Cosell is one of the best announcers in the business”
ex NYT Brown 10/15/77