About Joe Platania
PressBox football beat writer Joe Platania, 48, is a Baltimore native and has been a multi-award-winning sports journalist for 33 years, covering many different sports at all levels with insight, humor, a near-photographic memory and a keen, prescient eye.
A longtime member in good standing of the National Sportscasters and Sportswriters Association and the Pro Football Writers of America, Platania (pluh-TAN-ee-yuh), will in 2012 enter his 19th season covering professional football, having manned the CFL Stallions beat for The Avenue Newspaper Group of Essex (1994-95) and the Ravens beat since the team's inception -- one of only three local writers who can make that claim -- for PressBox, The Avenue and other local publications and radio stations.
Platania is a much-sought-after veteran contributor and host on many talk-radio and television programs. He continues to make occasional appearances on "Inside PressBox," which airs at 11 p.m. Saturdays and 10:30 a.m. Sundays.
Besides that program, he has appeared on WMAR-TV's "Good Morning Maryland" show (2009), Comcast SportsNet's "Washington Post Live" (2004-06) and WJZ-TV's "Football Talk" postgame show with local broadcasting legend Marty Bass (2002-04).
Platania is the only sports journalist in Maryland history to have been a finalist for both the annual Sportscaster of the Year award (1998, which he won) and Sportswriter of the Year (2010). He is also a four-time Maryland-Delaware-District of Columbia Press Association award winner.
Platania has been known to occasionally go out on a limb with some of his predictions, many of which have been right.
In the NFL Draft, one of his most notable calls came in 1996, when he was the only reporter to forecast the slide of troubled running back Lawrence Phillips -- thought by many to be the Ravens' pick -- past Baltimore's No. 4 spot in the first round and into the sixth position, where he was taken by the Los Angeles Rams.
Also, Platania accurately foresaw Villanova's upset against Georgetown during the 1985 Final Four (WCVT/WTSR Radio), Sugar Ray Leonard's split-decision win against Marvin Hagler in 1987 (The Times, Perry Hall) and Greg Norman's collapse during the 1996 Masters (WWLG Radio).
He also forecast the exact score of Super Bowl XXV (Giants 20, Bills 19; The Times, Perry Hall), came within five minutes of predicting Super Bowl XXI's score (Giants-Broncos; The Times, Perry Hall) and was within one point of Super Bowl XLIII's final tally (Steelers-Cardinals; PressBoxOnline.com).
Platania, a graduate of St. Joseph's, Cockeysville (1977), Calvert Hall College High School (1981) and Towson University (1985), is single and lives in Cockeysville.
He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.