The tandem of Joe Tessitore and Booger McFarland won’t return to ESPN’s “Monday Night Football” broadcast booth, according to media reporter Richard Deitsch of The Athletic.
Deitsch tweeted Saturday that Tessitore and McFarland will be replaced by internal candidates and will “remain in prominent roles” at the network.
ESPN is going to have a new Monday Night Football booth. Joe Tessitore and Booger McFarland will not return, via sources. The successors will be internal. No decision has been made yet. Both Tessitore and McFarland will remain in prominent roles at ESPN.
Front Office Sports reported last week that although ESPN was prepared to give huge paydays to Tony Romo or Peyton Manning to come aboard as the “Monday Night Football” analyst, that was before the coronavirus pandemic brought sports to a halt.
With declining revenues at parent company Disney, which has been forced to shutter its theme parks and ask ESPN’s top earners to take a pay cut, the network will search for talent already under contract, according to the report. Among those under consideration could be Steve Levy, who has handled college football play-by-play duties for the network, and analysts Louis Riddick, Dan Orlovsky and Pat McAfee.
In an interview with Deitsch two years ago for a Sports Illustrated podcast, Riddick, 51, said he has aspirations of the job. The former NFL safety, who also worked as a pro scout and director of pro personnel, has been with ESPN since 2013.
“This is something that has been a goal of mine and ESPN is very well aware that I am very interested in it,” Riddick said. “It is the pinnacle of broadcasting as far as I am concerned, the most iconic position in broadcasting. To be involved with Monday Night Football either as a play-by-play person or analyst is something I am hoping I can achieve.”