SportsCenter

Midnight SportsCenter producer reflects on first year

Scott Van Pelt (L) and producer Stanford Steve Coughlin on the set of SportsCenter Sept. 7, 2015.  (Joe Faraoni/ESPN Images)
Scott Van Pelt (L) and producer Stanford Steve Coughlin on the set of SportsCenter Sept. 7, 2015. (Joe Faraoni/ESPN Images)

The midnight ET edition of SportsCenter with Scott Van Pelt is celebrating its one-year anniversary this week, having launched on Sept. 7, 2015, the same day as ESPN’s 36th anniversary. Tom DeCorte, producer of the show since it began, spoke with Front Row:

Tom DeCorte (left), producer of the Midnight SportsCenter with Scott Van Pelt, goes over a show plan with Van Pelt. (ESPN/Andy Hall)
Tom DeCorte (left), producer of the midnight ET edition of SportsCenter with Scott Van Pelt, goes over a show plan with Van Pelt. (Andy Hall/ESPN)

One year in, what are you most proud of about the show?
I’m proud of how we’ve been able to rethink how SportsCenter can work. We’ve rethought how we present highlights, how we present commentary, and we’ve created a blueprint for what we hope is the next generation of SportsCenter.

What do you look at as some of your favorite moments from the first year?
That’s a tough one – every time SVP gets [Tim] Kurkjian to laugh still makes me laugh. I think the LeBron James interview after the Cavs won the [NBA] title was a great moment. It was SVP at his interviewing best and LeBron James at his most open. Those are the two that really stand out. Also, there was [college basketball star] Buddy Hield – he did an interview with SVP right after Oklahoma had a really tough loss and he got a standing ovation from the Kansas fans after he came back out to do the interview.

Any specific goals going forward?
My favorite line from someone I talk about the show with a lot is the best thing about the show might not have been invented yet. So we go into it still looking to try new things and develop new segments. I think in the second six months of our first year, we really made a lot of strides about looking at things a different way. Now we’re really interested to see how we apply what we learned in the second six months to now being back in football season, and how does that look?

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