WINNIPEG — They’re big shoes to fill. Massive shoes, actually. But seasoned broadcaster Derek Taylor, or “DT” as he is affectionately known, is up for the challenge as the new voice of the Winnipeg Blue Bombers.
Replacing the legendary Bob Irving — a man who had called Bomber games since 1974 — won’t be easy, but for Taylor, returning home and proving his worth to the Blue and Gold faithful will likely be just another day at the office.
Taylor, who was announced as Irving’s successor by Corus Entertainment on Wednesday, has recent CFL play-by-play experience, albeit for Winnipeg’s prairie archrivals. Taylor has been the voice of the Saskatchewan Roughriders on 620 CKRM for the last three years but will return to Winnipeg for his new role with 680 CJOB on May 15.
“Derek Taylor’s name and the CFL go hand in hand. His passion for the league, and specifically the Winnipeg Blue Bombers, is clear the moment he starts talking,” said Heather Steele, 680 CJOB manager, talk & talent.
Manitoba sports fans will know Taylor from his nine years calling Manitoba Bisons football games, including their 2007 Vanier Cup win. While with the Bisons, he also earned the title of “wing-eating champion” during a friendly competition among local media in 2012. The 47-year-old also spent stints at Fox Sports World Canada and TSN, where he hosted “SportsCentre” and covered the CFL through his “The Details” segment. Prior to TSN, Taylor co-hosted “Global News Morning” on Global Winnipeg (680 CJOB’s sister station) with Eva Kovacs. He recently reminisced about his time on the morning news desk to mark the show’s 10th anniversary.
“Congratulations to Derek on coming home to Winnipeg as the new voice of the Bombers,” said retired play-by-play announcer Bob Irving in a statement.
“His long-standing ties to the city make him a perfect fit where he will be working with some of the finest people in our industry. I know his work ethic and vibrant personality will knock it out of the park.”
CJOB has landed a good one in Derek Taylor to be the new voice of the Bombers. Congrats Derek, knock ‘em dead.
— Bob Irving (@BobIrvingCJOB) February 23, 2022
Not only will the move to Winnipeg to call games for the back-to-back Grey Cup champions be a homecoming for Taylor, but also his wife, Fiona Odlum.
The broadcaster and journalist announced on Twitter she has accepted a position with CBC Manitoba this spring. Odlum currently works at CBC Saskatchewan as a weather specialist.
Taylor’s first call will, coincidently, be the Blue Bombers — Roughriders pre-season game on May 23 in Regina.