Thursday, July 10, 2008
Interesting news from ESPN Programming Central this morning, it appears that the original first block of the new look Sports Center (6-9AM) has hit the cutting room floor. Also caught up in the mix appears to be Linda Cohn and Steve Berthiaume. The two were originally scheduled to host the slot, and while Berthiaume still has Baseball Tonight duties to fall back on, Cohn is left without a spot. Via Sports Business Daily....
When ESPN debuts its live morning "SportsCenters" on August 11, it will go live for six hours, rather than the nine that was originally planned. The net will show a re-aired loop of "SportsCenter" from 6:00-9:00am ET before going to live programming from 9:00am-3:00pm. "The 6-9am block was always going to be looking back to the previous night," said ESPN VP/PR Josh Krulewitz. "As we proceeded with our plans, we realized the biggest impact on fans across our platform would come from the 9am-3pm block."Same as when ESPN first announced the new format, this move makes a ton of sense within the 24-hour news cycle. The 9am hour would seemingly still have some of the stories from the night before but would be nowhere near as bare of new content as a 6 o'clock starting time. That's what ESPN News is for and with that channel now in HD, it makes a perfect replacement.
ESPN had announced that Linda Cohn and Steve Berthiaume would host that early morning block. Berthiaume will continue at his current gig on "Baseball Tonight," while Cohn's future duties are still to be determined. No changes are expected for the other planned hosts (Hannah Storm and Josh Elliott from 9:00am-noon and Chris McKendry and Robert Flores from noon-3:00pm).
You do have to feel bad for Linda Cohn though. She's been working on Sports Center since 1992, and while I've never thought she was the best thing going, she never grated on my nerves the way some other personalities have.
Hopefully they find something else for her on the Network. Hey, maybe even a spot in the booth....she's as qualified as anyone.