Behind the Mic: Mike Tirico To Call Both NHL Outdoor Games at Lake Tahoe; Ryan Clark Signs Multi-Year Extension With ESPN
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, Mike Tirico will be on the call for this weekend’s NHL Outdoor games at Lake Tahoe, Ryan Clark signs a multi-year extension with ESPN, and more.
Mike Tirico To Call Both NHL Outdoor Games at Lake Tahoe
Mike Tirico will handle play-by-play duties for the two NHL outdoor matchups at Lake Tahoe on Saturday, Feb. 20, between the Colorado Avalanche and Vegas Golden Knights at 3 p.m. ET on NBC and Sunday, Feb. 21, featuring the Boston Bruins and Philadelphia Flyers at 2 p.m. ET on NBC. The Lake Tahoe matchups will mark Tirico’s play-by-play debut on an NHL outdoor game in his storied broadcasting career.
Tirico hosts NBC Olympics’ primetime coverage, Football Night in America and many other premier events, and serves as the lead play-by-play voice for NBC Sports’ Notre Dame Football coverage. He made his NHL play-by-play debut in Feb. of 2019 and has worked numerous games since, including during the 2020 Stanley Cup Qualifying Round. (NBC Sports)
Ryan Clark Signs Multi-Year Extension With ESPN
ESPN has re-signed versatile and quick-witted NFL studio analyst Ryan Clark to a multi-year deal, extending the Super Bowl Champion’s tenure with the network that began in 2015. The former Pro Bowl safety will remain a year-round presence on multiple shows and platforms, including surrounding the NFL’s biggest annual events – Super Bowl, Draft, free agency, and training camp. Regular season appearances will continue to be vast and wide ranging, highlighted each week by SportsCenter with SVP following Monday Night Football. Additionally, Get Up, NFL Live, and other editions of SportsCenter will also continue to feature Clark.
ESPN has been Clark’s home since he retired from his 13-year NFL playing career following the 2014 season, having announced he was joining the network on NFL Live in February of 2015. His on-the-field accomplishments are abundant, headlined by winning Super Bowl XLIII, two AFC Championships (2008 and 2010) and being named a Pro Bowler (2011). Clark was a member of the Pittsburgh Steelers for each of those successes, the organization for whom he played the majority of his career (2006-13). He entered the league with the New York Giants (2002-03) and played for Washington in two different stints (2004-05, 2014). The consummate NFL veteran set the foundation for his post-playing career in 2013 and 2014, where he made guest appearances on ESPN following his season. (ESPN)
Ben Verlander Joins Fox Sports as Digital MLB Contributor
Former professional baseball player Ben Verlander has joined Fox Sports as an MLB contributor to the new FOX Sports app, FOXSports.com and social platforms. Verlander previously served as a host of Fox Sports’ 2020 World Series Watch Parties, which attracted more than 5.7 million viewers across platforms. (Twitter)
ESPN Adds Matt Miller, Brings Back Jim Nagy as NFL Draft Contributors
Matt Miller, the former NFL Draft analyst and insider for Bleacher Report who recently launched The Draft Scout, is joining ESPN as an NFL Draft contributor. Leveraging 10 years of experience covering the NFL Draft, Miller will appear across ESPN platforms on NFL Live, SportsCenter, NFL Draft and Mock Draft specials, ESPN+ exclusive programs, ESPN Radio and more. He will make his ESPN debut today on Get Up!
Miller was Bleacher Report’s lead NFL Draft writer from 2010-2021. Contributing mock drafts, scouting reports, in-depth stories and more, he became the most-read author in the history of the website. Prior to Bleacher Report, Miller worked as Director of Scouting for New Era Scouting from 2006-10 and a coach and recruiting coordinator for the CFL’s Joplin Crusaders (2006-08).
In addition to running The Draft Scout, Miller also hosts a daily sports radio program and contributes to a twice-weekly podcast covering college and NFL football.
Senior Bowl Executive Director Jim Nagy has also signed an extension to return as an ESPN NFL Draft contributor. In his third NFL Draft season with ESPN, he will continue to provide analysis across a multitude of platforms. New in 2021, Nagy will also take part in original NFL Draft-focused programming on ESPN+. He returns Feb. 25 and will appear on SportsCenter Special: Mel Kiper’s NFL Mock Draft 2.0 and other shows.
A former NFL scout with nearly two decades worth of experience, Nagy has contributed to four Super Bowl Championship teams over the course of his career with the Washington Football Team, New England Patriots, Kansas City Chiefs and Seattle Seahawks. (ESPN)