Following last night's debate, NBC presented a "Truth Squad" segment aimed at determining what vice-presidential hopefuls Sarah Palin and Joe Biden said that was varying degrees of wrong -- and the person doing the judging was none other than Kevin Corke, who has executed what may be the most unlikely rise to national prominence of any onetime Denver TV personality.
As noted in this April 2000 Message column, Corke spent a decade at Channel 9, but in a non-news role. He served as a weekend and/or fill-in sportscaster who generally wound up with only the most thankless jobs and was never given a serious shot at the main sports-anchor gig. Finally, he abandoned ship and leapt to a national position at ESPN. Unfortunately, he got stuck behind name talent there, too; he was mainly relegated to serving as a news reader on some of the network's ancillary channels. Then, a few years back, he suddenly popped up on NBC, and he's gradually worked his way up to the ladder, earning face time on programs like Today and Nightly News with Brian Williams. Still, his appearance following the Palin-Biden faceoff may have been his most-watched to date.
Other Denver TV types have gone on to on-camera network positions, including Tom Costello, another Channel 9 veteran who's now a Washington, D.C.-based NBC correspondent. Yet none has taken a journey quite like Corke's. -- Michael Roberts
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