Behind the Mic: Dale Earnhardt Jr. Enters NBC’s Booth; ESPN Re-Ups PTI’s Kornheiser, Wilbon

Behind the Mic provides a roundup of recent news regarding on-air talent, including deals, departures, and new assignments. In this week’s edition, Dale Earnhardt Jr. joins NBC Sports broadcast booth on NASCAR, ESPN re-up Pardon the Interruption co-hosts Tony Kornheiser and Michael Wilbon, Mike Tirico will host NBC’s primetime coverage of the 2016 Breeders’ Cup, Chris Broussard is jumping from ESPN to rival FS1, and ampa Bay Rays’ ace Chris Archer will join ESPN’s Baseball Tonight for the World Series. 

…Dale Earnhardt Jr. will join the NBC Sports broadcast booth for portions of two upcoming Sprint Cup broadcasts. Earnhardt, who has not raced since July as he recovers from a concussion, will lend his expertise as an analyst during NBCSN’s coverage this Sunday from Talladega Superspeedway, as well as the following Sunday from Martinsville Speedway. Inside the NBCSN broadcast booth, Earnhardt will reunite with his former crew chief Steve Letarte, and work alongside race announcer Rick Allen and fellow analyst Jeff Burton. Sunday marks Earnhardt’s first ever NASCAR Sprint Cup broadcasting assignment…

…ESPN has signed the Pardon the Interruption co-hosts Tony Kornheiser and Michael Wilbon to a new multi-year contract extensions. The pair, who have been with PTI since the daily sports news and discussion show debuted on October 17, 2001, will continue to work together and contribute to other ESPN platforms…

…NBC Sports Group’s Mike Tirico will host NBC’s primetime coverage of the 2016 Breeders’ Cup World Championships from Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, Calif. on Saturday, Nov. 5, marking his first career horse racing assignment. Since joining NBC Sports Group in July, Tirico has served as a host of the 2016 Rio Olympics, Football Night in America, The Open, and The Ryder Cup, and handled play-by-play for Notre Dame Football…

As first reported by Sporting News, Chris Broussard is jumping from ESPN to rival FS1. The veteran NBA reporter joines Fox Sports after 12 years at ESPN. According to Sporting News, Broussard will likely pair with Jim Jackson, the former Dallas Mavericks star turned FS1 basketball analyst, but may be used more as an “opinionist,” rather than a traditional insider/reporter. Broussard marks the lastest on-air talent to depart ESPN for Fox, joining Skip Bayless, Jason Whitlock, Colin Cowherd and Erin Andrews.

…Tampa Bay Rays’ ace Chris Archer will join ESPN’s Baseball Tonight as a guest analyst for on-site, pre-game and post-game shows during the 2016 MLB World Series. Baseball Tonight presented by Chevrolet at the World Series will generally air at 7 p.m. ET and either midnight or 1 a.m. on ESPN2 and WatchESPN. Archer is scheduled to appear on Baseball Tonight for Games 1 and 2, and if necessary, Games 5, 6 and 7. He will join a cast of commentators, which will includeKarl Ravech, Jessica Mendoza, Eduardo Perez, Buster Olney, Tim Kurkjian andChris Berman. This marks the second consecutive season that Archer will contribute to ESPN’s World Series coverage…

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