It will be a bit of a squeeze because Ogden, Sandusky says with respect (if not awe), is "huuuuge."

The white adhesive tape along the table marks their places: "Stan," "Q," "Gerry" and "Mr. Hall of Fame."

But after just a few minutes, it's down the corridor two doors to WBAL's radio booth to discuss logistics with the five WBAL staffers. After that, he heads down two stadium levels to the truck to talk to Don Dirado, the Rave-TV producer.

Sandusky, a Towson University graduate who started at WBAL in 1988, says it took him a year of working simulcasts to figure out the "trick" of doing them.

"On simulcast, during the play, I do radio," he says. "After the play, I do TV. I know that creates too much talking during the play for TV, but I have to let people who are driving in their cars know the ball is on the near side of the field on the 20-yard line. On TV, they can see that for themselves."

He says it also took time for him to understand that a three-person booth works better when the two analysts are seated side by side rather than on opposite sides of the play-by-play announcer, which is the usual model. Sitting side by side, White and Ismail use nonverbal cues so they don't talk over each other.

"My job: I'm the card dealer knowing when to deal to each of those guys," he says.

"Stan is the most knowledgeable football guy I've been around. He knows levels and nuances of football that amaze me every week," Sandusky explains. "And Q knows the modern football player's psychological makeup. Man, does he know that. He knows what guys are thinking. He's lived in that helmet."

"So if we're talking about X's and O's or a defensive situation," I have to go to Stan," he says of the 63-year-old lawyer and former Baltimore Colts linebacker." "Or, if were in a situation where psychology is at play or it involves receivers, I have to go to Q."

Both are strong personalities who still respond to the game with the intensity of NFL athletes.

As Sandusky stands at that mirror just minutes before kickoff Thursday night, White is standing at the front of the TV booth, facing the field, punching the air with his fist like a conductor in time to the marching band at the 50-yard line.

The 42-year-old Ismail, meanwhile, is rocking from heel to toe at a sprinter's pace while emitting a series of ear-splitting whistles — sounds that pierce the game-time stadium din flooding into the booth through its open front.

"The first time I heard Q do that whistle next to me, I almost fell out of the booth," Sandusky says. "But Q knows what he's doing. He explained that it's like a metronome for him that says, 'It's almost game time — it's time to ratchet it up, ratchet it up, ratchet it up. Come on, man, game time. Let's go.'"

That's what viewers and listeners didn't see and hear seconds before the lights came up in the WBAL booth at 7:30 p.m. Thursday.

Let the record show that the live simulcast began right on time — with Sandusky looking pretty good for a guy who did his TV makeup in such a hurry.

"Welcome to M&T Bank Stadium," he says , smiling into the camera. "It's a perfect night for football …"

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Hidden Maryland

What: In the WBAL broadcast booth and Rave-TV control room truck for a Ravens game

Where: M&T Bank Stadium

You would never guess that: WBAL analyst Qadry Ismail occasionally lets fly with an ear-splitting whistle in the booth.



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