After weeks of rehearsal and the construction of a new set – located in the heart of the ESPN newsroom in Bristol, Conn. – ESPN2’s Numbers Never* Lie debuted yesterday, Sept. 12. The new weekday show (3:30 p.m. ET), co-hosted by Michael Smith and Charissa Thompson, is a roundtable discussion offering lively debate with an emphasis on sports analytics.
ESPN’s Matthew Berry, Herm Edwards and Christopher Harris joined the co-hosts for the inaugural episode. Some of the topics covered included NFL Week 1 performances (e.g. Ben Roethlisberger’s turnovers…blip or trend?) with fantasy perspective (e.g. Cam Newton’s 422 passing yards and the fact he was started in just 3.2 percent of fantasy leagues).
“The first show started off as smart discussion of numbers and quickly morphed into a stat debate,” said Jamie Horowitz, coordinating producer. “The big winner: Tony Romo. Highlights say he was terrible down the stretch; the numbers said there is reason to believe.”
In between show takes, the number “4” also made a lasting impression. Edwards was asked about his daily workout routine, which begins at 4 a.m. (even when working late on NFL Sundays) and includes an hour of cardio as the warm up. Thompson vowed to join him, prompting discussion on the over/under for the amount of consecutive days someone could commit to Edward’s rigorous training regimen.
On air or off, numbers are always the root of discussion with Numbers Never* Lie.