Earlier today, ESPN announced the hiring of the “Voice of the SEC,” Paul Finebaum. With duties that will range from hosting a daily radio show (eventually simulcasting it on the SEC Network) to appearing on a variety ESPN shows and platforms, Finebaum will work with a wide cross-section of people at ESPN. Here, a few offer their thoughts on the multi-talented Finebaum.
“Paul knows the SEC better than anyone – the passion, the rivalries and the hot buttons for an electric fan base. We are thrilled to have Paul join the ESPN team. He will be a fantastic addition and help both ESPN and the SEC Network serve sports fans in a unique and powerful way.” – Justin Connolly, ESPN Senior Vice President of College Networks
“You can shake your head at what you may hear but there’s no denying that The Finebaum Show is the beating heart of the SEC. It’s hard to imagine the passion and characters of college football so neatly corralled and then amplified by one broadcaster, but somehow through the years Paul has been able to do just that. From the moment we first outlined the 30 for 30 film, Roll Tide/War Eagle, there was no doubt his show would be the thread weaving its way through that story. Paul is a master at stoking the flames of the hot burning SEC fire with smarts and credibility.” – Joe Tessitore, Host of ESPN’s College Football Live and play-by-play announcer
“Paul Finebaum is must-listen for college football fans, especially those in the SEC markets. His knowledge and passion will bring great value to our ESPN Audio platforms.” – Tim McCarthy, Sr. Vice President, ESPN Radio
“I was raised in the house of a Vols diehard, in the swirl of the Tennessee-Alabama rivalry, back when UT was still winning on the Third Saturday in October more than it lost. Paul Finebaum was then, and still is, appointment listening among Southerners. Inevitably his reach has crossed the Mason Dixon and stretched to the other side of the Mississippi as more and more ears turn to the land of crystal footballs. He raises the ire of fans across the nation because of his clear-eyed views about the sports landscape, and the SEC’s place in it. He’d have the same opinions over a cup of coffee in the back of the local drug store. That’s what makes ‘The Finebaum Show’ such a staple: To talk SEC sports and be taken seriously, you have to be one of us.” – LaRue Cook, General Editor, College Football, ESPN The Magazine.
Mike Humes, Carrie Kreiswirth, Diane Lamb and Keri Potts contributed to this post.