OMAHA – As a longtime broadcast voice for the Nebraska Cornhuskers during a career spanning more than four decades, Kent Pavelka has thrilled generations of fans with his exciting calls of basketball and football games. Tonight, he’ll be honored as the Omaha Press Club’s 158th Face on the Barroom Floor.
The Omaha Press Club “Face on the Barroom Floor” honors newsmakers who have had an impact on the community. The caricatures are drawn by artist Jim Horan who worked for the Omaha World-Herald when he began drawing the Faces in 1971. The drawings are unveiled during a roast and toast of the honoree. They are then placed on the floor to be walked on and admired until they are framed and join the other newsmaker caricatures on the clubs walls. No other press club has anything like the Faces on the Barroom Floor.
The roasters for the event in Pavelka’s honor could possibly be the most celebrated slate of roasters in the history of the Omaha Press Club. They include:
- Larry the Cable Guy (aka Dan Whitney), comedian/actor – Face No. 113, 2007;
- Tim Miles, Nebraska men’s basketball coach;
- Matt Davison, Nebraska associate athletic director-football, Husker football radio analyst, former football and basketball player for Nebraska, and longtime basketball broadcast partner of Kent; and
- Emcee – Gary Sadlemyer, KFAB-AM (1110) morning show host and longtime KFAB partner with Kent — Face No. 115, 2008.
Pavelka joined the Husker football broadcast team in 1974, serving as a color analyst from 1974 to 1983 and as play-by-play announcer from 1984 to 1996. He has been the lead announcer for Nebraska basketball for 31 seasons and will return to the microphone in 2018-19, a season in which he will surpass the 1,000 mark for total Husker basketball broadcasts.
Among his numerous awards, Pavelka is a six-time winner of the Nebraska Sportscaster of the Year Award, a Special Merit Award recipient of the Nebraska Basketball Hall of Fame, a Hall of Fame member for the Nebraska Radio Personalities and KFAB Radio. He will receive this Omaha Press Club honor in front of a sell-out crowd tonight, Thursday: September 13, 2018.