John Madden is moving to NBC when the network resumes broadcasting National Football League games in the 2006-07 season, the network announced Wednesday.
Madden, who has already worked doing NFL broadcasts at the three other major networks, will join the “Sunday Night Football” broadcasts on NBC, the first time that Sunday night show will be on broadcast television.
Madden has been part of the team at ABC’s “Monday Night Football” for the past three seasons and ABC confirmed that he will stay as part of the ABC team for the 2005-06 season, broadcasting the upcoming season’s Super Bowl when ABC airs it.
But after this coming season “Monday Night Football” will move to ESPN, which like ABC is owned by media conglomerate Walt Disney Co. (Research) And neither ABC nor ESPN will be part of the rotation of networks that will get to broadcast Super Bowls during the six-year life of the NFL rights deals.
“John is much more than a football legend, he’s an American icon,” said a statement from Dick Ebersol, chairman of NBC Universal Sports. “He is the only sports television talent who resonates across all ages – kids grow up today playing his video game and watching him on TV, as their fathers grew up watching him on NFL sidelines every Sunday.”
Though Coach Madden’s resume is impressive, I must take issue with Ebersol’s claim. Fran Healy certainly resonates across all ages — Mets fans from 8 to 80 go looking for handguns every time he opens his mouth.