Behind The Scenes

ESPN Audio’s Championship Drive podcasts feature former Rutgers player Eric LeGrand

Former Rutgers football player Eric LeGrand contributes his thoughts to the Monday and Friday editions of the Championship Drive with Rece Davis podcast. (IMG/Eric LeGrand)
Former Rutgers football player Eric LeGrand contributes his thoughts to the Monday and Friday editions of the Championship Drive with Rece Davis podcast. (IMG/Eric LeGrand)

Though former Rutgers defensive tackle Eric LeGrand is no longer playing, he continues to involve himself in the football landscape.

This season, LeGrand has been offering his thoughts on college football on Mondays and Fridays to ESPN Audio’s weekday Championship Drive with Rece Davis podcast. LeGrand, who during an Oct. 16, 2010 Rutgers game suffered a career-ending spinal injury that led to paralysis, has added depth to the podcast.

He works with hosts Davis, Zubin Mehenti, Ivan Maisel and other college football personalities to create a nuanced show with varying and insightful angles.

The decision to join Championship Drive was an easy one for LeGrand.

Championship Drive offers unique perspectives from some of the most seasoned voices in college football,” LeGrand said. “My experience as a player adds an additional, unique element to the show. I’m looking forward to contributing more to the podcast.”

With Rutgers set to face No. 16 Nebraska on Saturday (noon ET, ESPN2), LeGrand’s viewpoint will be especially intriguing on today’s podcast. Front Row spoke with Keith Goralski, ESPN senior director, digital audio content about LeGrand’s presence on – and contributions to – the podcast.

How did the opportunity to work with LeGrand develop?
We learned that Eric was interested in pursuing a career in broadcasting and expanding his on-air portfolio. We were immediately interested in how we could work together, and it has led to a great collaboration.

Why LeGrand?
So many reasons, to be completely transparent. We knew Eric would provide a player’s perspective on various issues, but we weren’t aware he would formulate such thought-provoking opinions of topics and games. We were also confident that Eric’s truly inspirational story would provide him with an audience eager to hear him speak. He’s a pretty busy guy, but has dedicated time to developing his craft.

What has the response to his contributions been?
Fantastic! Eric definitely provides a perspective and opinion that translates well in this medium and he has been able to form instant chemistry with his Championship Drive colleagues.

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