(CBS DETROIT) – If you follow sports in Detroit, you know the name Rob Parker.
He was the first Black sports columnist at the Detroit Free Press, as well as a TV and radio sportscaster for more than a decade in Motown.
Now, Parker has a scholarship in his name for aspiring broadcasters, which he talked about at his barbershop.
“You learn a lot of stuff in the barbershop, and going up as a kid, I always wanted to own one because of the experience I had,” Parker said.
And that experience led to “Sporty Cuts” off Seven Mile Road on Detroit’s west side, where they cut it up talking sports.
“I love debating sports. I use to love every minute of it. But you also learn about a lot of other things like relationships, politics” said Parker. “You know like whether you were in style or not. You know if you wore the wrong clothes in the barber shop you would get lit up.”
Parker cuts no corners when he refers to talking sports. Always a straight shooter, Parker draws a straight line to the truth.
In addition to becoming the first Black columnist at the Free Press, he was a columnist at the Detroit News for nine years. These days, Parker is debating sports on TV and radio. Still, when it comes to the barbershop, he knows that that’s where he got his real start.
“This is why sports debate television is so big because it is taken from this venue,” he said.
When asked what is special about Detroit that led him to open a barbershop, Parker said “It’s the best thing I’ve done.”
“I’ve had three things, three big things that happen to me in Detroit. The first Black sports columnist at the Free Press in 1993 and I got married here in 1997 and bought this barber shop in 2002. The one thing standing in 2022 and it’s the barbershop,” he said.
Having a punchline has become Parker’s new love, doing some stand-up comedy; however, it’s his love for sports and telling those stories that go way back to when CBS Detroit’s Ronnie Duncan first met him 37 years ago, when he was his intern and a student at Southern Connecticut State University in New Haven, Connecticut.
“It is amazing to see you [Ronnie]. It’s surreal. Think about it, Ronnie. When I was in college and I was interning for you, I saw a young Black guy doing television,” said Parker. “It made such an impression, watching you read what I wrote. Seeing you is wonderful.”
Credit: Source link