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ESPN Reveals Commentator Teams for XFL 2023 Kickoff Season

ESPN Reveals Commentator Teams for XFL 2023 Kickoff Season Led by Platform’s Signature College Football Voices 

All Four Teams Feature Play-by-Play Voice & Analyst in the Booth; Reporter and Second Analyst on the Field

ESPN today announced its commentator teams for the upcoming 2023 XFL kickoff season, beginning Feb. 18.

Key details:

·       Features four teams of signature voices across ESPN’s roster of industry-leading football experts.

·       Each team includes a play-by-play commentator and analyst in the booth plus a reporter and the return of the sideline analyst on the field. The sideline team will provide a unique vantage point for analysis and added access for fans throughout the game.

·       Teams will cover every game each weekend across ESPN, ESPN2, ABC and FX. All games will also be available live on ESPN+.

·       One or more games each week, including the XFL Playoffs and Championship Game, will also be available in Spanish on ESPN Deportes. ESPN Deportes’ commentator team will also be announced in the coming weeks.

“Each ESPN team brings extensive expertise and their backgrounds in college football make them incredibly informed about the players who will be stars at the pro level in the XFL,” said Steve Ackels, ESPN vice president, production. “This talented group of voices, combined with the many on-field production innovations we have planned for this season, will provide fans with unprecedented access to all facets of the XFL.”

ESPN, ABC and FX’s full XFL 2023 kickoff season telecast schedule was announced last week. Commentator game assignments will be announced soon.

Team 1

Fast Facts:

·       Tom Hart (play-by-play) – Joined ESPN in 2012 and has been the voice of SEC Saturday Night college football games since 2017. He also served as a play-by-play commentator for ABC and ESPN’s coverage of the XFL in 2020, in addition to calling college basketball and baseball.

·       Greg McElroy (analyst) – The 2010 BCS national champion joined ESPN in 2014 as a college football analyst for SEC Network. He calls college football games on ESPN/ABC and contributes to ESPN studio shows. He served as an analyst for XFL games on ESPN and ABC in 2020. The host of the Always College Football podcast, he also co-hosts the McElroy and Cubelic in the Morning radio show in Birmingham.

·       Katie George (field reporter) – Former Louisville volleyball star joined the ACC Network at its launch in 2019 and now serves as a reporter for ESPN/ABC Saturday college football games, one of ESPN’s primary volleyball analysts, and contributes to coverage across many college and professional sports.

·       Cole Cubelic (field analyst) – Former Auburn University offensive lineman and captain, joined ESPN in 2011 and is an analyst across the platform’s college football game and studio coverage, including SEC Saturday Night. He also covered XFL games as a field analyst for ESPN/ABC in 2020, and co-hosts the McElroy and Cubelic in the Morning radio show in Birmingham.

Team 2

Fast Facts:

·       Matt Barrie (play-by-play) – Joined ESPN in March 2013. He is a co-anchor of the noon ET weekday edition of SportsCenter and hosts ESPN’s studio coverage for college football Saturdays, as well as calling play-by-play for ESPN’s Thursday night college football franchise.

·       Joey Galloway (analyst) – One of Ohio State’s all-time receiving leaders and a 16-season NFL veteran. Galloway joined ESPN in 2011 and is a college football analyst across studio and game coverage. He also served as an XFL analyst for ESPN and ABC in 2020.

·       Tiffany Blackmon (field reporter) – Joined ESPN in the fall of 2021 and is a college football sideline reporter for the platform. She previously spent more than five years with NFL Media as a reporter and correspondent for NFL Network.

·       Eric Mac Lain (field analyst) – Joined ACC Network in 2019 and is a studio analyst on The Huddle, ACCN’s signature football show. Mac Lain played at Clemson from 2011-15, amassing the most wins (46) by a single player in team history.

Team 3

Fast Facts:

·       John Schriffen (play-by-play) – Joined ESPN in 2020 and is a play-by-play voice across ESPN platforms, calling college football, men’s college basketball, baseball and softball, as well as NBA G League and Summer League and MLB.

·       Tom Luginbill (analyst) – Joined ESPN in 2005 and provides recruiting analysis for top collegiate football prospects as the director of scouting in addition to his college football sideline analyst role, which he’s done the last nine years. Luginbill served as an analyst on XFL games on ESPN and ABC in 2020 and was a quarterback coach in the original XFL, winning a championship with Los Angeles in 2001.

·       Stormy Buonantony (field reporter) – The Emmy-award winning journalist joined ESPN in 2020 and is a college football sideline reporter for the platform. Buonantony also co-hosts the weekday VSiN Final Countdown digital sports talk show.

·       Harry Douglas (field analyst) – the 10-year NFL veteran joined ESPN in 2019 and is a contributor across ESPN studio shows, digital football shows including hosting Countdown to College GameDay, and co-host of the new ESPN Radio show Fitz & Harry.

Team 4

Fast Facts:

·       Lowell Galindo (play-by-play) – Joined ESPN in 2007 and is the lead anchor for Longhorn Network, including hosting Texas GameDay, Texas All-Access, Longhorn Extra and others. Galindo also handles play-by-play for Texas sports, including college football and basketball.

·       Sam Acho (analyst) – Thenearly 10-year NFL veteran joined ESPN in 2021. A college football analyst, Acho contributes to college football studio coverage on Saturdays, in addition to being a regular voice across SportsCenter, Get Up and College Football Live.

·       Taylor McGregor (field reporter) – Joined ESPN in September 2019 and is a college football sideline reporter. McGregor is also the lead Cubs reporter during the MLB season for Marquee Sports Network in Chicago.

·       Ian Fitzsimmons (field analyst) – Joined ESPN in 2009 and is a sideline analyst and reporter for ESPN Radio covering college football and NFL games as well as the co-host of Freddie and Fitzsimmons.

Announced in May, The Walt Disney Company (TWDC), ESPN and the XFL reached an exclusive, global multi-year agreement that calls for every regular-season and playoff game to be presented on an ESPN/TWDC platform. XFL matchups will be featured on a combination of ABC, ESPN platforms and FX. The XFL season starts on Saturday, Feb. 18, 2023, and continues through the spring with 40 regular-season matchups, two semifinal playoff games and the championship.

About XFL 

The XFL’s ownership group, led by Dany Garcia, Dwayne Johnson, and Gerry Cardinale’s RedBird Capital Partners, is building a fan-first, fast-paced global professional football league with innovative rules and enhanced 360 game experience. The XFL will bring entertainment to world class football, with the goal of advancing the game of football and expanding player opportunities when it launches in February 2023. 

Subscribe to our XFL News Hub YouTube Channel. Get breaking news and the latest XFL news. Plus the XFL Week In Review Podcast live every Monday at 8PM ET.

Mark is the founder and editor of XFL News Hub. The site was started in January of 2018, within days of the announced return of the XFL. Contact him directly by emailing mark.perry@xflnewshub.com

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