Connect with us
blank

Sports TV News

Jimmy Pitaro: ‘ESPN Started Working To Get Pat McAfee Back As Soon As He Left’

“He’s that rare talent that both my teenagers and I find compelling.”

blank

Published

on

blank

Make no mistake about it. ESPN is not getting back into business with Pat McAfee because it is chasing what is popular. Jimmy Pitaro told Richard Deitsch that the second the former Colts punter told ESPN he was leaving in 2020, the company started trying to figure out how to get him back.

“From the day he left, we all wanted Pat back at ESPN, starting with College GameDay, Pat and I agreed that he and I would try to figure this out together, which is what happened.”

The ESPN President made it clear to The Athletic’s media writer that he does not regularly get involved with talent negotiations or recruiting. That is how strongly he felt about Pat McAfee.

“As I’ve told you in the past, I have a tremendous amount of respect for our talent department, and they do fantastic work. My job is to make their lives easier, not harder. Sometimes me getting involved and in the weeds creates challenges. Again, while somewhat of an anomaly, it worked out well this time. There’s no ambiguity when talking with Pat; he’s very clear on what’s important to him and what’s not, and I appreciate that as it makes it all easy.”

Pat McAfee himself told Deitsch that he was impressed by the persistence of Jimmy Pitaro. After all, at one point ESPN forbade its talent from making appearances on McAfee’s radio show. McAfee said that plenty has happened since then that made it clear to him that he and Pitaro were a good fit.

“Since our first conversation, he seemed to understand me a good bit more than most TV execs,” he said. “(Pitaro) has been nothing but cool to me. I’m very thankful for that. The national championship invite was an insanely nice gesture. That type of s— goes a long way with me.”

Jimmy Pitaro said that in his eyes, finding a way to get McAfee back to Bristol was a no-brainer. He has proven on his radio show, WWE programming, and on countless appearances on the network that he checks every box ESPN wants in its talent.

“His top attributes are exactly what we look for — he’s willing to say what he believes, he is genuine, incredibly knowledgeable and passionate. He resonates strongly among young fans, and he has a significant and engaged social presence. He’s that rare talent that both my teenagers and I find compelling.”

ESPN signed McAfee to a two year deal. He begins his tenure as part of the College GameDay cast this week in Austin, Texas.

Continue Reading
Advertisement
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Sports TV News

ESPN’s NFL Programming Sees Big September Growth

For ESPN, September has been a really strong month with their NFL programming.

blank

Published

on

NFL Studio

For ESPN, September has been a really strong month with their NFL programming.

Sunday NFL Countdown is averaging 1.4 million viewers per show thus far in 2022. That up 15% from 2021’s first three shows of the NFL season. The season premiere – Sunday, Sept. 11 – averaged 1.6 million viewers, tying the network’s best Week 1 audience for the show since 2016 and is up 35% year-over-year.

NFL Live experienced large growth too. The episode airing after the first NFL Sunday, on Monday September 12, averaged 664,000 viewers which beat every NFL Live episode last season, including the most-watched episode on 2021 (December 17) which grabbed 635,000 viewers.

Monday Night Countdown is averaging 1.3 million viewers for its two, non-staggered September episodes, which aired in its traditional timeslot (6-8 pm).

Continue Reading

Sports TV News

ESPN Assigns Broadcast Teams for MLB Wild Card Round

In preparation for the postseason, ESPN has assigned the broadcast teams for the series forthcoming.

blank

Published

on

Wild Card
David Berding/Getty Images

There are just a few games left in the MLB season and the postseason begins this weekend with the Wild Card round. In preparation, ESPN has assigned the broadcast teams for the series forthcoming.

Andrew Marchand reports that the team assigned to the presumptive New York Mets Wild Card series will be Karl Ravech, David Cone and Eduardo Perez. The Mets still mathematically can win the NL East but they trail the Braves by two games with three to play.

He also reports that the St. Louis Wild Card series will be called by Michael Kay and Alex Rodriguez. The Cleveland series will be broadcast by Boog Sciambi and Doug Glanville while the Toronto series will be called by Dave Flemming, Jessica Mendoza and Tim Kurkjian.

Continue Reading

Sports TV News

Stugotz: ‘Sean McDonough Hates The Aaron Judge Cut-Ins’

“If you look at the numbers, if you look at the interest, if you look at the revenue that it generates for the networks, it makes more sense to have an Aaron Judge at-bat interrupted by an Iowa State field goal attempt than it does the other way around.”

blank

Published

on

blank

College football fans are not being shy with how they feel about Aaron Judge. Whether it is private conversations or social media posts, people are making their disdain for the cut-ins to college football games on ESPN networks when the Yankee slugger comes to bat known. On Monday morning, Stugotz added that it isn’t just fans that are unhappy.

The Dan Le Batard Show discussed the second straight week of cut-ins on Monday morning. Stugotz pointed out that one of ESPN’s primary college football voices sounds just as annoyed as fans are.

“Sean McDonough hates the toss to Aaron Judge,” he said. Hates it!”

Last week, ESPN and ABC cut into games when Judge was sitting on 60 home runs. This week, he was sitting on 61. A 62nd home run would be the most in American League history.

Stugotz added that has to be part of McDonough’s frustration.

“In his defense, what are we cutting in for? I have no idea if [Aaron Judge] is breaking a record, what record he’s breaking, if he’s clean. I have no idea!”

Producer Mike Ryan Ruiz said the fact that Judge is yet to deliver is making the cut-ins more frustrating for fans.

“I think what hurts the whole thing is that Aaron Judge has been terrible during these cut-ins,” Ruiz said. “He’s been God awful during these cut-ins. I haven’t seen a single home runs during one of these cut-ins. There was genuine fury at a watch party I was at. Fury! At Aaron Judge.”

A popular criticism of ESPN has been that this kind of attention would not be paid to Aaron Judge if he was chasing a mark that wasn’t the home run record if he played anywhere other than New York. According to Ryan, the mistake is bigger than that. Why would regular season baseball ever interrupt college football?

“If you look at the numbers, if you look at the interest, if you look at the revenue that it generates for the networks, it makes more sense to have an Aaron Judge at-bat interrupted by an Iowa State field goal attempt than it does the other way around.”

There are four games left in Major League Baseball’s regular season. You can bet college football fans will make plenty of signs for College GameDay if Judge cannot hit number 62 before the playoffs start.

Continue Reading
Advertisement blank
Advertisement blank

Barrett Media Writers

Copyright © 2022 Barrett Media.