Behind the Mic: CBS Sports Peels Back Curtain on Alliance of American Football Broadcast Teams

Behind the Mic provides a roundup of recent news regarding on-air talent, including new deals, departures, and assignments compiled from press releases and reports around the industry. In this week’s edition, CBS Sports announced their broadcast teams for the inaugural season of the Alliance of American Football, ESPN discloses their broadcasting teams for the upcoming New Year’s Six Bowl games, David Ross extends with the network, former NASCAR driver A.J. Allmendinger joins NBC Sports, and Fox Sports adds former heavyweight champion Lennox Lewis and Joe Goossen to their Fox PBC Fight Night lineup.

CBS Sports and The Alliance of American Football revealed the announce teams for the inaugural 2019 season, highlighted by CBS Sports’ deep roster of play-by-play announcers, analysts, and reporters.

The Alliance officially debuts on CBS Television Network on Saturday, Feb. 9 at 8:30 PM, ET, with regional coverage featuring the San Antonio Commanders hosting the San Diego Fleet and the Atlanta Legends visiting the Orlando Apollos.

Spero Dedes, Trent Green, and Tiki Barber, along with reporter Jamie Erdahl, call the action for the San Antonio-San Diego game from the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas.

Andrew Catalon and Gary Danielson will announce from UCF’s Spectrum Stadium in Orlando, Fla. with Melanie Collins reporting from the field for the Atlanta-Orlando match-up.

On Sunday, Feb. 10, CBS Sports Network begins its 11-week run televising The Alliance’s best matchup each week on Sundays at 4:00 PM, ET. Ben Holden, Adam Archuleta, and John Schriffen serve as the announce team for all games airing on CBS Sports Network.

On opening night, CBS will broadcast a pregame show live from inside the Alamodome, introducing the rules, faces, and tenor of the new league. Coverage begins at 8:00 PM, ET on Feb. 9.

The Alliance season concludes on CBS Television Network on Saturday, April 27 (1:00 PM, ET) with the Championship game from Sam Boyd Stadium in Las Vegas, Nev. The broadcast team will be announced at a later date…

…ESPN has announced their broadcasting teams for the major college football bowl games. Chris Fowler and Kirk Herbstreit will call the CFP Semifinal at the Orange Bowl, their fifth semifinal together and the only play by-play commentator and analyst duo to call a CFP Semifinal in every year of the system. Laura Rutledge will be assigned to the Sooners and Maria Taylor to the Crimson Tide. For the versatile reporters, it is their second consecutive year working a CFP Semifinal.

Sean McDonough makes his College Football Playoff television debut
 when the accomplished broadcaster calls the CFP Semifinal at the 
Cotton Bowl Classic, joining Todd Blackledge in the booth. Veteran
 reporters Holly Rowe and Tom Rinaldi will report from Arlington; the 
duo, along with Blackledge, are working a CFP Semifinal for the fifth 
consecutive year. Rowe will be assigned to the Tigers and Rinaldi to 
the Fighting Irish.

Following their CFP Semifinal calls, Fowler, Herbstreit, Rinaldi, and 
Taylor head to Pasadena to call the Rose Bowl Game while McDonough,
 Blackledge, and Rowe will head to New Orleans for the Sugar Bowl.

On ESPN Radio, Dave Pasch, Greg McElroy, and Tom Luginbill call the
Rose Bowl, with Bill Rosinski, David Norrie, and Ian Fitzsimmons on the 
Sugar Bowl. For ESPN Deportes, Lalo Varela and Pablo Viruega are on the
 Rose Bowl Game and Roberto Abramowitz and Jerry Olaya on the Sugar

For the Peach Bowl, Bob Wischusen, Brock Huard, and Allison Williams will call the game on ESPN, while Roger Valdivieso and Alex Pombo are on ESPN Deportes. Tom Hart, Jordan Rodgers, and Cole Cubelic can be heard on ESPN Radio.

For the Fiesta Bowl, Steve Levy, Brian Griese, and Todd McShay will call the game on ESPN, with Valdivieso and Pombo on ESPN Deportes. Jason Benetti, Kelly Stouffer, and Olivia Dekker will be on the radio call.

…ESPN has reached a multi-year extension with Major League Baseball analyst David Ross. The two-time World Series Champion will continue to serve as an analyst for ESPN’s MLB game and studio coverage.

Ross will regularly call ESPN’s weeknight MLB game telecasts and appear on Baseball Tonight, including at the World Series, MLB All-Star, and the Little League World Series. He will also contribute analysis to SportsCenter and Get Up!…

…NBC Sports Group has reached a multi-year agreement with former Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series driver A.J. Allmendinger, who will join the network’s motorsports coverage beginning in January 2019.

Allmendinger will work on various properties across NBC Sports’ unparalleled motorsports portfolio, including as a booth analyst for the network’s exclusive coverage of the IMSA SportsCar Championship. Additionally, he will contribute regularly to NBCSN’s daily motorsports show NASCAR America. Allmendinger will make his broadcast debut during NBC Sports’ coverage of the 57th running of the iconic Rolex 24 at Daytona on Saturday, Jan. 26, where he is also expected to race as part of Meyer Shank Racing (MSR)…

…Fox Sports announced that three-time heavyweight champion Lennox Lewis and legendary trainer Joe Goossen will join blow-by-blow announcer Kenny Albert to call Fox PBC Fight Night, featuring the world champion Charlo twins live from Brooklyn on Saturday, Dec. 22 (8:00 PM ET) on Fox, Fox Deportes, and streaming on the Fox Sports app. Adrian Garcia Marquez, Erik Morales, and Jaime Motta call the fights in Spanish on Fox Deportes.

In addition, the Fox PBC Fight Night broadcast features former lightweight champion Ray “Boom Boom” Mancini as an analyst, and hosts Chris Myers and Kate Abdo. Veteran combat sports journalist Heidi Androl reports and interviews fighters, while International Boxing Hall of Famers Jimmy Lennon Jr. and Larry Hazzard Sr. join the show as ring announcer and Fox Sports PBC rules expert/unofficial scorer, respectively.

Fox Sports PBC programming begins Thursday, Dec. 20 (2:00 PM ET) on FS2 and the Fox Sports app with the one-hour Fox PBC Press Conference, as host Abdo is joined Mancini and WBC Welterweight Champion Shawn Porter to preview the fights on the card and interview fighters. Androl presides over the press conference.

On Friday, Dec. 21, the Fox PBC Weigh-In Show is telecast on FS2 and streaming on the Fox Sports app at 1:30 PM ET, with host Abdo and analysts Porter and Mancini again on the desk, previewing the fights. Lennon Jr. hosts the weigh-ins on stage, while Androl interviews fighters on-site.

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