He may not be Regis Philbin, but the gap-toothed, Giants great Michael Strahan is set to succeed the broadcasting legend. After dozens of on-air auditions, multiple sources say Strahan has been chosen as Kelly Ripa’s co-host on Live.
Strahan, at 40, and half the age of Philbin, is expected to be unveiled as the permanent replacement when the new season debuts September 4.
The former Giants defensive end, however, will keep his Fox NFL Sunday gig, according to the Los Angeles Times. It also means tallying the frequent flier miles as weekend commuter to the Fox studios in Hollywood.
While it’s great news for the personable Super Bowl champion, it is unfortunate news for NY1 morning anchor Pat Kiernan, who openly campaigned for the seat. Kiernan even got a handful of tryouts with Ripa.
Prior to his first appearance in March, Kiernan told FishbowlNY about his affinity for Live.
“I have long had an interest in co-hosting the show when Regis [Philbin] was there, if he went away,” Kiernan said. “But the opportunity never came about.”
Although Strahan is being touted as the new co-host, Kiernan would only say, “I owe ABC the respect of a ‘no comment’ until they have something to announce.”
The 80-year-old Philbin retired in November.
Photo credit: USAToday.com