Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Report: Chris Berman in talks with ESPN about returning in expanded role

Alex Reimer
August 16, 2018 - 12:20 pm

Chris Berman may be on his way back, back, back to ESPN. (Sorry, that was too easy).

The iconic anchor is in discussions with the WorldWide Leader about an expanded role during the NFL season, according to the New York Post’s Andrew Marchand. Last year, Berman was bumped off the network’s pregame show, “Sunday NFL Countdown,” and relegated to his weekly highlight spot on “Monday NFL Countdown.” The effort to phase out Berman was led by ex-president John Skipper, who abruptly resigned from his position in December.

Though Berman, 63, won’t be returning to Bristol in a full-time capacity, Marchand reports he could be a regular presence on ESPN, possibly hosting some Sunday night editions of “SportsCenter.” In addition, Berman is expected to do features and interviews for “Sunday NFL Countdown.” The show’s ratings dropped nearly 12 percent in his absence with Sam Ponder as the host. 

The possibility of Berman’s return fits a recent pattern of ESPN attempting to turn back the clock with some of its programming. The network, for example, now airs a traditional “SportsCenter” in the 6:00 p.m. hour, with Sage Steele and Kevin Negandhi replacing Jemele Hill and Michael Smith. Keith Olbermann is also back in a limited role, and was on the call for Yankees-Mets Monday.