CSN Reporter Rob Carlin Says Baltimore Has Become HomePosted on January 14, 2013
By Dave Hughes
A Long Island, N.Y., native, Rob Carlin wasn't originally from Maryland, but he now thinks of it as his home. And after starting his career in Maryland before moving away, he eventually found his way back again.
In October 2011, Carlin, who turns 41 in January, joined Comcast SportsNet in Bethesda, replacing Russ Thaler, who jumped to the NBC Sports Network.
Carlin serves as an anchor and reporter for "SportsNet Central" and is the network's Washington Redskins beat reporter. He spends a lot of his time driving down I-95 from his home in Ellicott City to the team's training facility in northern Virginia.
He also hosts CSN's Washington Capitals coverage, but the lockout put a temporary end to that before the NHL and NHLPA reached an agreement.
During the early 1990s, Carlin left his roots in New York and came to the Baltimore area before attending college. He eventually ended up in College Park at the University of Maryland, where he majored in sports journalism.
While there, he worked at the college radio station WMUC, where he handled basketball play-by-play.
After graduating in 1995, he became an intern at Channel 45/WBFF and soon was a full-time sports producer with sports anchor Bruce Cunningham.
Carlin also covered regional sports during four years as a sports reporter and anchor with Channel 47/WMDT in Salisbury, where he worked from 1997-2001.
"Those were four long years," Carlin said. "I covered lots of high school sports, lots of small stuff."
The first two years at WMDT, he was a weekend sports anchor before graduating to the main sports-anchor gig during his last two years at the Eastern Shore's ABC affiliate.
After that, he landed a job as a sports anchor and reporter for WVTM-TV, the NBC affiliate in Birmingham, Ala., where he spent the next four years, from 2001-05.
"I was the top weekend sports person and covered a lot of college sports," Carlin said. "In fact, I was the de facto Auburn beat reporter."
Eventually, he landed the top sports-anchor position at WVTM, but he soon found himself unemployed when his contract wasn't renewed.
And that led into what he said was a dark period.
"I moved home to New York and did manage to land a freelance producer position," Carlin said.
But by July 2006, he was headed back to Baltimore and Channel 2/WMAR, where he replaced Keith Mills as sports anchor and reporter.
"It started out as a good gig," Carlin said.
He was working with greats such as Scott Garceau, but the ABC affiliate was in the process of scaling back its sports coverage.
"It was a slow, systematic shutdown of the sports department," Carlin said. "After Garceau left, I became the de facto sports guy. Heck, it was a one-person sports department."
And in 2009, his contract wasn't renewed.
But Carlin met his future wife at WMAR -- news anchor and reporter Megan Pringle.
"It was a Channel 2 love story," Carlin said. "Something very good came out of my time at 2."
During the next few years, he divided his time between his home and wife in the Baltimore area and a new job up in New York, where he hosted New York Islanders pregame and postgame shows on the MSG Network.
But he soon managed to land a new job closer to his Baltimore home -- with his new wife and twin daughters -- joining Comcast SportsNet in 2011.
"I do now think of Baltimore as my home market," said Carlin, who has spent a lot of time lately covering D.C. teams. "It's kind of weird. It's my home market away from home. I'm still a soapbox Baltimore kind of guy."
Issue 181: January 2013