ESPN’s Jason Bennett is reportedly headed to Fox Sports; Amazon has officially named Kaylee Hartung its Thursday Night Football sideline reporter; Rich Eisen’s NFL Network contract is soon to expire.
ESPN’s Benetti reportedly headed to Fox Sports
ESPN play-by-play voice Jason Bennett is in negotiations to leave the network and join Fox Sports as its secondary college football announcer, the Chicago Sun-Times reported Friday. Benetti would work alongside Brock Howard. He would also call college basketball games for the network and, for Andrew Marchand of the New York PostMajor League Baseball.
In addition to leaving ESPN, Benetti will no longer call Peacock’s weekly MLB games after this season, per Marchand. He will continue his role as the voice of the White Sox on NBC Sports Chicago. (Chicago Sun-Times 7.22, Marchand/Twitter 7.22)
Amazon officially names Hartung TNF sideline reporter
Amazon officially announced Thursday that it has hired former ESPN sideline reporter Kaylee Hartung to fill that role on its Thursday Night Football NFL games. Hartung, who left ESPN for CNN in 2017 and has most recently worked for ABC News, joins Al Michaels and Kirk Herbstreit on the TNF team.
In addition, Amazon has also announced the hiring of Aqib Talib and the newly-retired Andrew Whitworth for its pre and postgame coverage, joining a crowded studio team that already includes Tony Gonzalez, Richard Sherman and Ryan Fitzpatrick. (Amazon PR 7.21)
Eisen’s NFL Network future reportedly an “open question”
Longtime NFL Network host Rich Eisen is approaching the end of his contract next month and it is an “open question” as to whether he will re-sign, according to Front Office Sports. Per the report, NFL Network “strongly” wants to retain Eisen, who has been part of its roster since its first year of operation in 2003. Eisen previously worked for ESPN as a prominent SportsCenter anchor in the late 1990s and early 2000s. (Front Office Sports 7.20)