Behind the Mic: Fox Sports Flies Out Broadcast Teams for 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup in France

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, Fox Sports deploys on-air teams for the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup in France, a classic ESPN podcast duo returns together, a long-time comedian is named as the host for the 2019 ESPYS, an Atlanta Braves legend joined Fox Sports South as a guest analyst, ESPN expands the roles of two of their broadcast talent, a former Big 12 reporter now covers the Cleveland Browns for ESPN, and Golf Channel’s Morning Drive adds a new broadcaster.

The network’s broadcaster assignments for the FIFA Women’s World Cup France 2019 Group Stage were announced by David Neal, Executive Producer, FIFA Women’s World Cup on Fox.

Fox Sports lead FIFA Women’s World Cup France 2019 play-by-play announcer JP Dellacamera and lead match analyst Aly Wagner are on the call as host nation France faces Korea Republic at 3:00 PM ET on FS1 live from Parc des Princes in Paris. A one-hour edition of FIFA Women’s World Cup Live at 2:00 PM ET previews the opening match.

The FIFA Women’s World Cup France 2019 continues with a full day of matches on Saturday, June 8. Play begins at 9:00 AM ET with Lisa Byington and Cat Whitehill calling the action for Germany vs. China on FS1, followed by Jenn Hildreth and Kyndra de St. Aubin on the call for Spain vs. South Africa at 12:00 PM ET on the Fox broadcast network. At 3:00 PM ET on Fox, Derek Rae and Danielle Slaton are live from Stade Auguste-Delaune in Reims for Norway vs. Nigeria. Glenn Davis and Angela Hucles make their FIFA Women’s World Cup France 2019 debut Sunday, June 9, for Australia vs. Italy at 7:00 AM ET on FS1.

The U.S. Women’s National Team begins its Women’s World Cup title defense on Tuesday, June 11, opening Group Stage play against Thailand at 3:00 PM ET on the Fox broadcast network. Dellacamera and Wagner have the call live from Stade Auguste-Delaune in Reims and are joined by reporter Alex Curry. A one-hour edition of FIFA Women’s World Cup Today leads into the match.

Fox Sports’ FIFA Women’s World Cup France 2019 coverage begins Wednesday, June 5, with a one-hour FIFA Women’s World Cup France 2019 Preview Show from the network’s Paris studio. Rob Stone hosts alongside analysts Kate Gill, Ariane Hingst, Alexi Lalas, Karina LeBlanc, Heather O’Reilly, and Kelly Smith with reports from Jenny Taft and Grant Wahl.

Each match day during the FIFA Women’s World Cup France 2019, Fox Sports presents exclusive studio coverage from its set located in Paris’s iconic Place du Trocadero in the shadow of the Eiffel Tower. Stone and Taft serve as hosts and are joined by analysts Eni Aluko, Gill, Hingst, Lalas, LeBlanc, O’Reilly, and Smith. Christina Unkel is Fox Sports’ FIFA Women’s World Cup rules analyst, and Wahl serves as correspondent-at-large.

Each match day, LeBlanc and Aaron West co-host FIFA Women’s World Cup Now live on Twitter via @FOXSports and @FOXSoccer. Fox Soccer Tonight, which originates from the network’s Los Angeles studios, wraps each night during this Summer of Soccer with host Kate Abdo and analysts Leslie Osborne, Christie Pearce Rampone, Maurice Edu, Cobi Jones, and Fernando Fiore providing reaction and analysis to the FIFA Women’s World Cup and CONCACAF Gold Cup…

…Former ESPN Radio co-hosts Scott Van Pelt and Ryen Russillo will recreate the tremendous chemistry they enjoyed with lively sports conversation in a new podcast, SVP & Russillo. The one-hour offering debuted June 3. After three monthly editions, in September the show will become bi-weekly. Their former ESPN Radio show was heard for six years weekday afternoons until mid-2015.

Van Pelt, who joined ESPN as a golf reporter in 2001 has hosted his own, personalized edition of SportsCenter at midnight since September 2015, bringing his unique perspective to the venerable show. The program showcases Van Pelt’s passion for sports, with his self-deprecating wit and disposition toward celebrating stars and storylines. Van Pelt’s radio involvement dates from July 2009 when The Scott Van Pelt Show made its debut on ESPN Radio and in a simulcast on ESPN2. Russillo was serving as co-host, and the show was re-named SVP & Russillo in October 2012. It ended in the summer of 2015 when Van Pelt was preparing for the launch of the new midnight SportsCenter.

Russillo, who joined ESPN Audio in 2006, was first heard on a variety of radio shows and formats including talk shows, college football’s College GameDay on Radio and the NFL Draft. After Van Pelt left for SportsCenter, Russillo continued to host the show through December 2017. As of January 2018, he hosts a weekly podcast, The Russillo Show. He also appears regularly on SportsCenter and Get Up! to discuss the NBA…

The 2019 ESPYS Presented by Capital One will be hosted by acclaimed actor and comedian Tracy Morgan. Morgan, who currently stars on the critically acclaimed The Last O.G., will be joined by top celebrities from sports and entertainment to commemorate the past year in sports by recognizing major sports achievements, reliving unforgettable moments, and saluting the leading performers and performances. The ESPYS will be broadcast live on ABC on Wednesday, July 10, at 8 p.m. ET from Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles.

Morgan is one of the most notable and respected comedy actors of our time. He received an Emmy Nomination for his work on 30 Rock and is a nine-time NAACP Image Award nominee. Morgan also received an Emmy nomination for his triumphant return to Saturday Night Live, where he had previously starred for seven seasons.

The ESPYS helps to raise awareness and funds for the V Foundation for Cancer Research, the charity founded by ESPN and the late basketball coach Jim Valvano at the first ESPYS back in 1993. ESPN has helped raise close to $97 million for the V Foundation over the past 26 years. The ESPYS are executive produced by Maura Mandt and co-produced by Maggievision Productions…

…Former Braves player and NL MVP Terry Pendleton will serve as a guest analyst for Braves LIVE on Fox Sports South, the network’s flagship pre- and postgame show for Atlanta Braves telecasts.

Pendleton joined host Jerome Jurenovich and analyst Nick Green for the Braves-Detroit Tigers series on Friday, May 31, at 6:30 p.m. ET, Saturday, June 1, at 3:30 p.m. ET, and Sunday, June 2, at 12:30 p.m. ET. All shows originated from the Fox Sports set at The Battery Atlanta.

A member of the Braves Hall of Fame, Pendleton was named the NL MVP and NL Batting Champion in 1991. He is a three-time Gold Glove winner and former MLB All-Star. Following his playing days, Pendleton served as bench coach, hitting coach and first base coach for the Braves.

Pendleton’s appearance adds to the growing roster of Braves LIVE guest analysts that have appeared this season, including Chipper Jones, Ryan Klesko, and Kris Medlen

…Beginning on Tuesday, May 28, ESPN’s Jason Fitz and Sarah Spain – who regularly appear across multiple platforms at the network – expanded their roles. Fitz will now become a regular part of ESPN Radio’s weekday morning lineup. Spain will now host a new weeknight radio show. The duo has hosted ESPN Radio’s Spain and Fitz since the beginning of 2018.

Fitz – who joined ESPN in 2016 and has quickly become a household name across radio programming and the network’s digital platforms including hosting SportsCenter on Snapchat – will now be a regular contributor on ESPN Radio’s weekday morning drive show, Golic and Wingo featuring Mike Golic, Trey Wingo, and Mike Golic Jr. Fitz will play a key role in the radio and television simulcast of the show which airs weekdays, 6-10 a.m. ET (ESPN2, 6-8 a.m., and ESPNEWS, 6-10 a.m.). He will continue to contribute to ESPN’s live, on-site digital presence at major events.

Fitz will be the regular host of ESPN Radio’s First and Last on weekdays during the 5-6 a.m. hour. The show – which leads into Golic and Wingo – will continue to provide insight on the previous night’s highlights and look ahead at the day’s stories.

Spain, the Peabody Award and Sports Emmy Award winner, is a signature voice across ESPN’s many platforms including ESPN Radio, espnW, and a variety of the network’s television studio programming. Spain will now add to that, hosting her own, new ESPN Radio show, Spain and Company for three hours every Monday-Friday from 6-9 p.m.

Co-hosts on the nightly show will include ESPN Radio’s Jason Goff and ESPN college basketball analyst Jordan Cornette

Jake Trotter has covered the Oklahoma Sooners and the Big 12 Conference since he joined ESPN eight years ago.

Now, he’s moving onto the NFL like so many of the elite college football players he has covered. Trotter will be ESPN’s new NFL Nation team reporter assigned to the Cleveland Browns. He will also remain connected to college football by contributing to coverage of Ohio State.

The opportunity to cover one of pro football’s ascending teams was particularly alluring for Trotter, especially since he documented the college careers of several Browns players, most notably franchise quarterback Baker Mayfield, who won the 2017 Heisman Trophy and led Oklahoma to the College Football Playoff…

…GOLF Channel announced the addition of golf broadcaster Anna Whiteley as a full-time co-host for the network’s daily news show, Morning Drive. Whiteley officially joined Morning Drive on Monday, June 3.

Previously, Whiteley hosted the golf magazine television show Golfing World, taking viewers inside the ropes on the PGA TOUR, European Tour and LPGA Tour with player interviews, instructional tips and showcasing golf travel destinations. Golfing World airs in 35 countries around the world, including weekly on GOLF Channel and Sky Sports. She also has hosted tournament coverage for Sky Sports, the European Tour’s weekly Season Pass show, and has been a frequent European Tour contributor to GOLF Channel.

Whiteley will host Morning Drive Monday-Friday, joined by weekday regular co-hosts Robert Damron, Damon Hack, and Lauren Thompson. GOLF Channel analysts, contributors, and journalists will continue to make weekly guest appearances in discussing the stories of the day in the world of golf. Whiteley also will host Morning Drive on Sky Sports each Wednesday, further extending GOLF Channel and Sky Sports’ collaboration. LPGA Tour veteran Paige Mackenzie will return to Morning Drive in the fall following maternity leave. Gary Williams hosts Morning Drive on the weekends, joined by GOLF Channel insiders Jaime Diaz and Matt Adams.

Morning Drive is GOLF Channel’s daily morning news show, airing seven days a week from 7-9 a.m. ET featuring roundtable discussions and debates on the stories of the day in the world golf. Morning Drive is streamed live via GOLF Digital, as well as on the NBC Sports and GOLF Channel Apps – NBC Sports Group’s live streaming products for mobile devices, tablets, and connected TVs.

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