Behind the Mic: Soccer Legend Thierry Henry Joins CBS Sports’ UEFA Champions League Coverage; NBC Sports Preps for First All-Women Broadcast of Golf
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, Thierry Henry joins CBS Sports’ UEFA Champions League coverage, NBC Sports will highlight the first all-women golf broadcast in U.S. television history, and more.
Thierry Henry Joins CBS Sports’ UEFA Champions League Coverage
Thierry Henry, legendary France National Team striker and former Arsenal star, has joined CBS Sports’ UEFA Champions League coverage as a studio analyst. Henry made his debut on UEFA Champions League Today on Tuesday, Sept. 28 on Paramount+ and CBS Sports Network. UEFA Champions League Today, CBS Sports’ live pre-match, halftime and post-match studio show, lead into the network’s match coverage, highlighted by Paris Saint-Germain vs. Manchester City.
Henry will contribute as a studio analyst over the course of the season alongside host Kate Abdo and analysts Jamie Carragher, Micah Richards, Alex Scott, and Peter Schmeichel. In addition to his studio role, Henry will work on various CBS Sports soccer projects.
“Thierry Henry is one of the greatest players of all time, and we are thrilled to welcome him to our UEFA Champions League coverage,” says Sean McManus, Chairman, CBS Sports. “Thierry brings an elite level of knowledge, experience and authority to complement our already outstanding studio team. He makes his debut at an exciting time this week with our strong lineup of studio programming and matches across Paramount+ and CBS Sports Network.”
Known as one of the best players in global soccer history, Henry is the all-time top goal-scorer for Arsenal and the French National Team. His accolades include: a FIFA World Cup title, European Championship win, a UEFA Champions League title, two La Liga and English Premier League titles each, two-time Ballon d’Or runner-up, two-time FIFA World Player of the Year runner-up, two-time European Golden Shoe wins, FIFA World Cup All-Star Team, two-time Premier League Player of the Season, four-time Premier League Golden Boot, three-time FWA Footballer of the Year, five-time French Player of the Year, and Premier League Hall of Fame, among many others. He has spent time as a soccer analyst with Sky TV and currently serves as an assistant coach for the Belgium Men’s National Team. (CBS Sports)
NBC Sports Highlights First All-Women Golf Broadcast in U.S. Television History
NBC Sports will utilize an all-women broadcast team to call the ShopRite LPGA Classic at the Bay Course at Seaview Hotel and Golf Club in Galloway, NJ, this week on GOLF Channel, marking the first-ever all-women golf broadcast team in U.S. television history.
The commentary team will feature Cara Banks handling play-by-play duties, alongside analyst Judy Rankin, tower announcer Paige Mackenzie, and on-course reporters Karen Stupples and Kay Cockerill. Tournament coverage will be produced by long-time NBC Sports and GOLF Channel producer Beth Hutter.
Live tournament coverage of the PGA TOUR’s Sanderson Farms Championship and European Tour’s Alfred Dunhill Links Championship will also be presented this week on GOLF Channel.
“We’re thrilled to assemble this incredibly accomplished group of women for our broadcast of the ShopRite LPGA Classic on GOLF Channel,” says Molly Solomon, executive producer for NBC Olympics and GOLF Channel, and the first woman to serve in that role for a national sports network. “Our NBC Sports team features talented women at all levels – both on-camera and behind-the-scenes – who are essential to making our coverage a success on every platform, and we’re honored to celebrate their work as part of this broadcast.”
Katie Nolan Leaves ESPN
For years after leaving Fox Sports for the Worldwide Leader, Katie Nolan has left ESPN.
In a statement released on Twitter, she said “I’ve thought about sending this tweet for weeks, [but] I no longer work at ESPN. I’m really grateful for my time here. I made incredible friendships and valuable mistakes.”
While Nolan contributed to several of ESPN’s traditional TV programs, she was better known for her work on some of its nascent digital outlets. In addition to hosting her own digital series on ESPN+, Always Late With Katie Nolan, she also led a podcast, Sports? With Katie Nolan and co-hosted a version of SportsCenter on Snapchat. She also took part in some of ESPN’s recent programming experiments aimed at luring younger viewers. In 2019, she held forth with several other analysts during a stream-cast of Game 2 of that year’s NBA Finals. (Variety)
Turner Sports Announces Multi-Year Extension with Candace Parker & Return of Stan Van Gundy
Turner Sports has announced that Candace Parker has agreed to a multi-year extension which will see one of the most decorated basketball players of all-time continue to contribute as a studio analyst for NBA on TNT, NBA TV and the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Championship, while Stan Van Gundy will return as a season-long NBA on TNT game analyst.
Recently named to the WNBA’s W25 list of greatest and most influential players, Parker has been an integral part of TNT’s NBA coverage, primarily as a studio analyst for the network’s NBA on TNT Tuesday Night franchise. She also served as an executive producer for a “Women in Sports” episode of The Arena earlier this year.
A two-time WNBA MVP and current member of the Chicago Sky, Parker was selected as the No. 1 overall pick in the WNBA Draft by the Los Angeles Sparks in 2008, following a championship career at the University of Tennessee, where she led the Lady Vols to consecutive NCAA Championships in 2007 and 2008. During the 2008-09 WNBA season, she became the first player to earn WNBA MVP and Rookie of the Year honors in the same season.
In 2016, Parker led the Sparks to a WNBA Championship, in which she was named WNBA Finals MVP. She was named WNBA All-Star Game MVP in 2013, along with being elected to six All-WNBA teams and six All-Star teams. Parker also led Team USA Women’s Basketball to back-to-back Olympic gold medals in the 2008 and 2012 Games.
A 13-year NBA head coaching veteran, Van Gundy led the Orlando Magic to the 2009 NBA Finals while amassing a 554-425 (.566) career record during stints with the Miami Heat (2003-06), Magic (2007-12), Detroit Pistons (2014-18) and New Orleans Pelicans (2020-21). Van Gundy previously worked for Turner Sports during the 2019-20 NBA season and will once again contribute as an NBA TV studio analyst along with his NBA on TNT role as part of his multi-year agreement. (Turner Sports)
NBA Reporter Jamal Collier Joins ESPN
Chicago based NBA reporter Jamal Collier joins ESPN, covering Midwest region teams including the reigning NBA Champion Milwaukee Bucks, Chicago Bulls and Minnesota Timberwolves. Collier will begin by reporting from the Milwaukee Bucks’ 2021 Media Day.
“I’m so thrilled for this new chapter in my career and the opportunity to join a team filled with so many talented journalists,” he says. “The NBA is always a fun league to cover, and so many of the teams in this Midwest region have their own interesting storylines, characters and stakes for this coming season. I’m looking forward to bringing those stories to life.”
Prior to joining ESPN, Collier was the Chicago Bulls beat writer for the Chicago Tribune. The University of Illinois graduate previously covered the Washington Nationals for MLB.com (2016-2019), concluding after the team’s 2019 World Series victory.
“We are excited to welcome Jamal Collier to ESPN’s NBA team,” says Cristina Daglas, ESPN Senior Deputy Editor. “He will share his reporting and storytelling across our many platforms.”
Collier is a member of the National Association of Black Journalists and was honored for a short writing feature in the 2020 Associated Press Sports Editors contest. (ESPN)
Josina Anderson Joins CBS Sports HQ as NFL Insider
Josina Anderson has joined CBS Sports HQ as an NFL Insider where she will serve as an on-air reporter on the free 24/7 streaming sports news network beginning today.
Anderson will also contribute with a weekly appearance on the CBS Sports Pick Six NFL Podcast alongside host Will Brinson, covering the biggest stories and breaking news from the league. Additionally, Anderson will cover the NFL with written editorial articles each week on CBSSports.com.
Anderson comes to CBS Sports HQ after nearly a decade at ESPN, where she was the first female national NFL reporter at the company and made frequent appearances on shows including SportsCenter and NFL Live. Anderson also previously served as a reporter on INSIDE THE NFL and spent six years as a reporter at FOX31 in Denver.
“Josina has proven throughout her career to be a skilled and insightful reporter,” says Kieren Portley, Senior Vice President, Programming & Production, CBS Sports Digital. “With her knowledge, experience and relationships, she will be a terrific addition to our industry-leading NFL coverage across our digital platforms, including CBS Sports HQ.”
A graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Anderson ran track as a student-athlete collegiately.
Journalists Kayla Burton and Bridget Condon Join NFL Media
Journalists Kayla Burton and Bridget Condon have joined NFL Media.
Burton and Condon will serve multi-platform roles for NFL Media across NFL Network, NFL.com and the NFL app, with a variety of duties including on-air news updates, field reporting and contributions on properties such as Fantasy Football.
Prior to joining NFL Network, Burton served in a number of different roles with Western Mass News based in Springfield, MA, such as sports/news anchor, reporter and content producer. Additionally, Burton co-hosted the New England Patriots’ official pregame show, and for the past two years served as the color commentator for broadcasts of the Yale men’s and women’s basketball teams.
Burton graduated from Lehigh University in 2017 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism and a minor in Africana Studies, and was a member of the women’s basketball team. Additionally, Burton earned a master’s degree from the Newhouse Broadcast and Journalism school with an emphasis in Sports Communications at Syracuse University in 2019.
Condon joins NFL Network from WTVD-TV in Durham, NC, where she spent four years as an on-air sports anchor and reporter covering professional and local sports in the area. Prior to joining WTVD, Condon spent two years as an on-air sports anchor and reporter with WCAV-TV in Charlottesville, Virginia.
Condon graduated from James Madison University in 2015 with a double major in Media Arts & Design (concentration in Journalism) and Spanish. In 2019, she earned a graduate certificate in Digital Communication from the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill. (NFL)