ESPN Expands Production of New Year’s Six: MegaCast Returns With Up to 12 Presentations for College Football Playoff Semifinals; ESPN2 Viewing Option Added for Rose Bowl Game Presented by Northwestern Mutual and Allstate Sugar Bowl

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ESPN Expands Production of New Year’s Six: MegaCast Returns With Up to 12 Presentations for College Football Playoff Semifinals; ESPN2 Viewing Option Added for Rose Bowl Game Presented by Northwestern Mutual and Allstate Sugar Bowl

  • CFP Semifinals Feature Traditional Telecast on ESPN with Innovative Technology Such As Line-to-Gain Camera and Ref Cam
  • MegaCast Productions: Real-Time Analytics, Statistical Analysis, Multiple Unique Camera Views, Return of Coaches Film Room, HomeTown Radio Calls, and More

ESPN will deliver its most extensive New Year’s Six presentation ever, as the network reignites its innovative MegaCast production — this time with up to 12 presentations — for the College Football Playoff Semifinals at the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic featuring No. 2 Clemson vs. No. 3 Notre Dame (4 p.m. ET) and the Capital One Orange Bowl between No. 1 Alabama and No. 4 Oklahoma (8 p.m.) on Saturday, Dec. 29. This year, ESPN2 has been added as a viewing option, along with multiple ESPN3 streams, for the Rose Bowl Game Presented by Northwestern Mutual (5 p.m.) and Allstate Sugar Bowl (8:45 p.m.) on Tuesday, Jan. 1. The Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl (noon) on December 29, and the PlayStation Fiesta Bowl on New Year’s Day (1 p.m.) will also have alternate camera angles available on ESPN3. All the MegaCast and alternate viewing options for the New Year’s Six will be available on the ESPN App.

ESPN’s MegaCast Offers Up to 12 Productions to Experience Semifinal Saturday
For the second consecutive year, ESPN’s MegaCast presentation returns for the CFP Semifinals. The traditional telecast will air on ESPN, with up to a dozen alternate presentations featuring real-time analytics, statistical analysis, live discussion by head coaches, alternate camera angles, Spanish-language television and radio commentary and the hometown radio calls of the game paired with the ESPN telecast.

ESPN’s Innovation Provides Unique Angles; RefCam Makes CFP Debut, Line-to-Gain  Pylon Cam Utilized
ESPN will station more than 50 cameras inside AT&T Stadium (Cotton Bowl) and Hard Rock Stadium (Orange Bowl), all available to the traditional telecast and will provide the key vantage points for the MegaCast production. ESPN’s innovation will be on display throughout the entire operation, including the CFP debut of RefCam, a camera affixed to the bill of two referees’ hats, providing a similar camera view as the refs’ line of sight. The new vantage point adds to ESPN’s tradition utilizing new technology during the sport’s most important games. Additional production elements:

  • Goal Line Pylon Cams: Four cameras in each of the four pylons wired in along the two goal lines, providing key vantage points for potential scoring plays.
  • Line-to-Gain Pylon Cams: Wireless camera systems built into two movable pylons and repositioned throughout the game by the chain crew, providing a replay angle straight down the line to gain on both sides of the field.

Chris Fowler and Kirk Herbstreit Call CFP Semifinal at Capital One Orange Bowl; Maria Taylor on Alabama, Laura Rutledge on Sooners
Chris Fowler and Kirk Herbstreit will call the CFP Semifinal at the Orange Bowl, their fifth semifinal together and the only play-by-play commentator and analyst duo to call a CFP Semifinal in every year of the system. Laura Rutledge will be assigned to the Sooners and Maria Taylor to the Crimson Tide. For the versatile reporters, it is their second consecutive year working a CFP Semifinal.

Sean McDonough Makes CFP Semifinal Debut at Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic; Blackledge is Analyst, Rowe Reports on Clemson, Rinaldi on Notre Dame
Sean McDonough makes his College Football Playoff television debut when the accomplished broadcaster calls the CFP Semifinal at the Cotton Bowl Classic, joining Todd Blackledge in the booth. Veteran reporters Holly Rowe and Tom Rinaldi will report from Arlington; the duo, along with Blackledge, are working a CFP Semifinal for the fifth consecutive year. Rowe will be assigned to the Tigers and Rinaldi to the Fighting Irish.

Real-Time Analytics, Statistical Analysis, Live Discussion by Head Coaches, Alternate Camera Angles Return as Staples of ESPN’s MegaCast Presentation
The CFP Semifinals MegaCast will be showcased across ESPN2, ESPNEWS, ESPN Goal Line, ESPN Deportes, ESPN3, ESPN Radio, and ESPN Deportes Radio. SEC Network will have a presentation for the Orange Bowl.

  • Command Center(ESPN2 and ESPN App): A split-screen with four simultaneous camera views, which could include the main ESPN camera angle, the SkyCam view and isolated camera feeds of both head coaches at any given time. Enhanced statistics and real-time drive charts supplement the game action.
  • Coaches Film Room (ESPNEWS and ESPN App): Head coaches watch the game in a film room, offering strategic advice in real time. Participating coaches will be announced next week
  • Thinking Out Loud (SEC Network for Orange Bowl Only): Trio of Marcus Spears, Greg McElroy and Alyssa Lang make their MegaCast debut together, bringing hijinks, highlights and hilarity. More on SEC Network’s Orange Bowl plans are here.
  • DataCenter (ESPN Goal Line and ESPN App): A perfect catch-all viewing option, as ESPN’s main telecast will be surrounded by up-to-date real time stats, analytics, social media reaction and player information.
  • SkyCam (ESPN3 and ESPN App): The popular view from above the action — and behind the offense on most plays. This unique angle has been one of ESPN’s alternate viewing options for many years.
  • All-22 (ESPN3 and ESPN App): Watch the game the same way players and coaches study film, with a vantage point high above the field of play. The angle allows for the 22 players on the field to be seen at all times providing the ability to distinguish how plays develop.

  • ESPN Radio (ESPN App): Bill Rosinski, David Norrie, Ian Fitzsimmons (Cotton Bowl) and Steve Levy, Brian Griese, Todd McShay (Orange Bowl) call the games. The broadcast is available throughout the country on more than 400 ESPN Radio stations, the ESPN App, com, SiriusXM, Apple Music, iHeartRadio and TuneIn.
  • ESPN Deportes and ESPN Deportes Radio (ESPN App): Spanish-language call with Lalo Varela and Pablo Viruega (Cotton Bowl), and Kenneth Garay and Sebastian Martinez-Christensen (Orange Bowl) on television. Radio announcers will be announced soon.
  • Hometown Audio Feed (ESPN3 and ESPN App): A partnership with JMI Sports, Learfield, and Notre Dame Global Partnerships pairs the ESPN telecast with the hometown radio call of the four teams. Broadcasters:
    • Alabama: Eli Gold, John Parker Wilson, Rashad Johnson and Chris Stewart
    • Clemson: Don Munson, Rodney Williams and Reggie Merriweather
    • Notre Dame: Paul Burmeister, Ryan Harris and Jack Nolan
    • Oklahoma: Toby Rowland, Teddy Lehman, Merv Johnson, Chris Plank and Gabe Ikard


Expanded Coverage of Rose Bowl and Sugar Bowl Highlights New Year’s Day
ESPN will utilize MegaCast offerings for The Rose Bowl Game featuring No. 9 Washington vs. No. 6 Ohio State and the Sugar Bowl matchup showcasing No. 15 Texas vs. No. 5 Georgia, providing fans more ways to watch any non-CFP Semifinal New Year’s Six game than ever before.

With the traditional telecast on ESPN, the Command Center will be activated on ESPN2, offering the same format as the presentation for the CFP Semifinals. Unique camera angles, such as the All-22, SkyCam, will also be available on ESPN3 for both games. ESPN Deportes will televise the Spanish-language telecast and ESPN Radio will have the broadcast. For the Sugar Bowl, Texas Football Statcast will be available on the Longhorn Network.

Double Duty: Fowler, Herbstreit, Rinaldi, Taylor, McDonough, Blackledge and Rowe Call New Year’s Day Games
Following their CFP Semifinal calls, Fowler, Herbstreit, Rinaldi and Taylor head to Pasadena to call the Rose Bowl Game while McDonough, Blackledge and Rowe will head to New Orleans for the Sugar Bowl.

On ESPN Radio, Dave Pasch, Greg McElroy and Tom Luginbill call the Rose Bowl, with Bill Rosinski, David Norrie and Ian Fitzsimmons on the Sugar Bowl. For ESPN Deportes, Lalo Varela and Pablo Viruega is on the Rose Bowl Game and Roberto Abramowitz and Jerry Olaya on the Sugar Bowl.

Peach Bowl and Fiesta Bowl Available across Multiple Platforms
The Peach Bowl between No. 10 Florida and No. 7 Michigan will lead into the CFP Semifinals and the Fiesta Bowl featuring No. 11 LSU vs. No. 8 UCF will begin ESPN’s game action on New Year’s Day. Both games will be aired on ESPN and ESPN Deportes with SkyCam available on ESPN3 and the radio broadcast on ESPN Radio.

For the Peach Bowl, Bob Wischusen, Brock Huard and Allison Williams will call the game on ESPN, while Roger Valdivieso and Alex Pombo are on ESPN Deportes. Tom Hart, Jordan Rodgers and Cole Cubelic can be heard on ESPN Radio.

For the Fiesta Bowl, Steve Levy, Brian Griese, and Todd McShay will call the game on ESPN, with Roger Valdivieso and Alex Pombo on ESPN Deportes. Jason Benetti, Kelly Stouffer and Olivia Dekker will be on the radio call.


Media contact: Derek Volner at 860-384-9986; [email protected] and @DerekVolner

Derek Volner

I currently lead ESPN’s NFL Communications, including Monday Night Football, NFL Draft and studio programming. Previously, I did the same for ESPN’s vast college football portfolio. I have been with ESPN since 2013.
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