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For the first time since the 1992 Barcelona Olympics, Bob Costas will not be hosting NBC’s prime time coverage from the 2018 Winter Olympics. This morning on the Today show, Costas passed the Olympic hosting torch to Mike Tirico.
“It has been both a privilege and an incredible personal and professional experience to have been part of NBC’s Olympic coverage all these years,” said Costas. “It’s been a wonderful run, but I just felt now was the right time to step away and I’m grateful that NBC left that decision to me.”
“The level and longevity of Bob’s tenure have left an indelible mark on American television and the Olympic Games,” said Tirico, who joined NBC ahead of the Rio Games last summer. “I am honored to call him a friend, humbled by this opportunity, and thankful to the many people who have helped make this possible.”
“For a quarter-century, Bob expertly piloted NBC’s prime time coverage of the Olympics,” said Mark Lazarus, chairman of NBC Broadcasting and Sports. “It is with a tremendous amount of pride that I can simultaneously express our appreciation for Bob’s stellar, record-setting run, while also feeling very lucky that we have someone as talented as Mike to take over as our new prime time host.”
We talked with Costas ahead of the Rio games last Summer. He told us he was taking his hosting duties “on a case-by-case basis. We’ll see what happens after this one.”
Adweek: NBC has Olympics through 2032. Given how fast the media landscape can change, what do you think that coverage will look like?
Costas: Whatever it looks like, I’ll be viewing it from a Barcalounger, I can tell you that. Here’s what it doesn’t look like: “Hello everyone, I’m Bob Costas and welcome to the 2032 Olympics from Antarctica or Saturn.” Whatever it is, it doesn’t include me.
Costas has been with NBC for 37 years. He will continue to wear many hats for NBC Sports and NBC News. Tirico joined NBC in 2016 after 26 years at ESPN. The PyeongChang Winter Games Opening Ceremony is one year from today.