ESPN Signs Play-by-Play Broadcaster Chris Fowler to New, Multi-Year Deal

By Mark Mwachiro 

You’ve seen and heard him call college football games, and you’ve seen and heard him call grand slam tennis matches. Now, his face and voice will be doing all that and more going forward at ESPN and ABC, as Disney announced Wednesday that ESPN has signed Chris Fowler to a new multi-year deal.

This new deal will see Fowler remain as the lead play-by-play commentator for ABC Saturday Night Football and the College Football Playoff National Championship on ESPN, as well as Wimbledon, the U.S. Open, and more.

Fowler will add NFL play-calling duties to his workload in 2023-2024, teaming up with former NFL players Dan Orlovsky, Louis Riddick, and sideline reporter Laura Rutledge to call five games this season on ESPN beginning on Week two of the regular NFL season.


Fowler’s broadcast team will also travel across the pond in week four to call the Falcons-Jaguars from Wembley Stadium in London on Oct. 1 at 9:30 a.m. ET on the streaming service ESPN+.

Fowler joins ESPN’s revamped NFL coverage, which now includes a new Monday Night Countdown on-air team led by Scott Van Pelt, who is taking over from the recently departed Suzy Kolber, a casualty of ESPN’s recent on-air layoffs.

This will not be Fowler’s first time calling NFL games, as he has previously called games in 2020 and 2021.

Fowler has been a constant presence at ESPN since 1986. In addition to his play-by-play broadcasting duties, Fowler previously served as the host of ESPN’s college football pregame show College GameDay from 1990 – 2014. He has hosted ESPN’s Heisman Trophy Presentation since the network began its coverage of the event in 1994 and ESPN’s The Home Depot College Football Awards show from 1993 to 2013. In addition, Fowler has also hosted SportsCenter, SportsCentury, horse racing’s Triple Crown races, men’s college basketball, including on-site Final Four coverage, and the first few editions of the X Games and Winter X Games.