When Tony Segreto, a nervous college kid barely one step removed from fetching coffee for the grown- ups, first went on the air in 1971, it seemed more likely his career would end not 37 years later but 37 minutes.
'I can't remember now if it was my first sportscast or my second, but I had to say the names `Mike Schmidt' and 'Arthur Ashe,' and neither one got out of my mouth correctly,'' a laughing Segreto recalls. ``I'll leave it to your imagination what they sounded like.''
Despite such a scatological start, Segreto not only survived but also thrived, growing into South Florida's most respected sportscaster and later its top-rated news anchor. But now his 40 years at WTVJ-NBC 6 really are coming to an end over two words: ''I'm retiring.'' His Jan. 9 newscast will be his last. Read my story on Segreto's retirement from Wednesday's Miami Herald.