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At 3 a.m., KOA's Rick Barber is the only game in town.

This departure, which becomes official April 21, is a considerable blow to the Post's sports department, which has lately been scooping its counterpart at the Rocky Mountain News on a regular basis; breaking the news about troubled Broncos cornerback Dale Carter's impending suspension by the NFL is just one recent example. Scarbrough, who confirms that the Post is considering candidates inside and outside the paper to succeed him, also takes pride in the wide-ranging nature of the section. "We realize that there are lots of areas that people haven't been covering that aggressively in Denver, like secondary sports. And I think we've been doing a lot better job of covering them." His biggest frustration during his two years on the job? That the News was recently recognized for its daily and Sunday sports sections by the Associated Press Sports Editors while the Post was not. "If they got awards for what they're doing now," he says, "then covering a women's sports story will probably get them a ticker-tape parade."

Have comments, tips or complaints about the media? E-mail "The Message" at Michael.Roberts@westword.com.

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