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GPB's Gil Tyree leaves for Memphis

Ashlee Wilson Hawn Gil Tyree
Rodney Ho/rho@ajc.com

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Former CBS Atlanta sportscaster Gil Tyree is leaving Atlanta for a new sportscasting gig at the ABC affiliate in Memphis.

He starts July 1.

In 2009, CBS Atlanta shut down its sports department, laying off Tyree and Mark Harmon, now sports director at Georgia Public Broadcasting.  WGCL-TV outsourced its sports coverage to 790/The Zone and effectively stopped doing daily sports coverage.

The Zone deal ended this past Tuesday, a day after the radio station dismissed its morning show Mayhem in the AM for a tasteless bit about former Saints player Steve Gleason, who is suffering from ALS.  On Tuesday, general manager Trey Fabacher said he's seeking a new sports director.

Since Tyree lost his job, he did some weekend freelance work for Fox 5 and covered high school football and basketball for Georgia Public Broadcasting.

Tyree didn't want to talk about that difficult post-CBS period in his life except to say, "Pain endured, resurrection has arrived. I'm excited about Memphis."

He said he was grateful for his time in Atlanta the past decade: "This community has been nothing but positive to me."

He was a presenter at the Southeastern Emmys earlier this month and was paired with a "Big Rich Atlanta" reality star on the podium to hand out awards. Strange? Yes indeed.  Look at the picture attached to this blog entry.

I called Harmon to catch up. He's happy with his job, which he has had for three years. "I'm really happy for Gil," he said. "Memphis is getting a great sportscaster. He's wonderful. It's nice for Gil because there are four or five guys in Memphis who he used to work with in Phoenix. We're going to miss him at GPB as our play-by-play guy on 'Football Fridays.' "

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