After tackling quarterbacks and running backs in the National Football League for nine years, former University of Maine football star Mike DeVito will be tackling a new career as a broadcaster for Learfield/Black Bear Sports Properties.
He will join four-time Maine Sportscaster of the Year and play-by-play man Dan Hannigan as the color analyst for UMaine’s televised football games on WVII-ABC7/WFVX-Fox 22 of Bangor, and he will be part of UMaine’s newly-expanded pre-game radio show on 103.9 WVOM-FM.
DeVito will be working with veteran play-by-play man Rich Kimball, a six-time Maine Sportscaster of the Year, and color man Bob Lucy, who won the award in 2013.
“I’m really excited to be back,” said DeVito. “The Maine football program has done so much for me, and this will give me the opportunity to give back to the program. It’s great to be able to return and to be plugged back into it.”
Former defensive lineman DeVito announced his retirement on April 11 after spending the past three years with the Kansas City Chiefs. He had spent the previous six with the New York Jets.
He said it comes at a perfect time because he is transitioning out of playing football.
Being an NFL player, he said he did media interviews and appeared on shows that gave him a “lot of practice.”
He also has been a guest host on “The Drive,” a sports talk show on WEZQ 92.9 FM, The Ticket, in Brewer.
“I’ll still have one foot in the door. I’ll still be around the game. I’m going to work hard at it, I want to be good,” said DeVito. “I tried coaching, and I wasn’t very good at it.”
DeVito will be joining the broadcast team at a time when the program is going through a transition. Joe Harasymiak has replaced Jack Cosgrove, who stepped down after 23 seasons to become UMaine’s senior associate director of athletics.
Harasymiak is the youngest Division I football coach in the country. He turned 30 on Thursday.
“I’m excited about the direction of the program,” said DeVito, who praised the job done by UMaine athletic director Karlton Creech and Cosgrove. “I went to some of the spring ball practices, and he has a lot of enthusiasm and charisma. He’s fiery and passionate about the game. It’s hard to get excited for 6 a.m. practices, but his guys really bought in. They practiced like they were going to play on Sunday.
“I’m looking forward to getting to know him and the system,” added DeVito.
DeVito and wife, Jessie (Martin), a Bangor native, live in Hampden with son Rocco and a second son, Sal, on the way.
He said it is going to be nice to be able to spend more time with his family after the demands of playing in the NFL limited it.
DeVito, a two-time All-Atlantic 10 selection when he was at UMaine, signed with the Jets as an undrafted free agent in 2007.
In his nine seasons, DeVito appeared in 110 games with 250 tackles, 5.5 sacks, six forced fumbles and three fumble recoveries.
Last fall, DeVito had a career-high three sacks and was in on 19 tackles, including 13 solos, for the Chiefs, who went 12-6 and lost to the New England Patriots 27-20 in their American Football Conference semifinal.
“We are thrilled to have Mike join our broadcast team,” said Creech in a press release. “To have an alum of Mike’s caliber returning to UMaine following an outstanding NFL career is great for all of Black Bear nation. Our fans watching the games at home or listening on the radio will be truly gifted with Mike’s insight and expertise.”