New TV Schedule Focused on Hourlong Saturday Show, Prime Time Specials and More
ESPN’s Outside the Lines, which will celebrate its 30th anniversary in 2020, will have a new, hourlong Saturday morning television edition and new daily segments on SportsCenter and other platforms as part of a revamping of the award-winning, issue-oriented investigative journalism brand that begins later this year.
OTL launched as a periodic prime time news program in May of 1990 and 10 years later added a Sunday show before going daily in 2003. As OTL continues to evolve to meet the changing habits of consumers, daily OTL segments will begin appearing on SportsCenter and other platforms on January 20, advancing the brand’s role as a pillar of ESPN’s journalistic endeavors along with the Saturday morning show in place of the weekday television program, which will stop production on December 20.
OTL will celebrate its 30th anniversary with a one-hour, prime time special in May.
Jeremy Schaap, who has won 12 Emmy Awards as well as numerous other honors for his journalism and reporting, will host the new Saturday morning edition of OTL starting January 18 at 9 a.m. ET on ESPN. Schaap also will continue to co-host ESPN’s monthly prime time E:60 program with Lisa Salters. Ryan Smith will remain in a prominent role with OTL.
The daily OTL segments, emanating from Studio Z on ESPN’s Bristol, Conn. campus, will appear Monday through Friday. The OTL-branded segments on SportsCenter will include a multi-part series in January after the debut of the Saturday morning program.
ESPN will air periodic, sports issues-based OTL specials in prime time, and OTL content will continue to appear on ESPN.com and E:60.
“Outside the Lines remains the quintessential journalism brand of ESPN and this approach better positions it for deeper dives into important topics during the Saturday edition; daily, in-the-moment perspective of breaking news; and more seamless inclusion into SportsCenter,” said Norby Williamson, ESPN executive vice president, event and studio production, and executive editor. “OTL’s team will continue to do what it has always done – create exceptional content, tackle important issues and make a difference in the world of sports. These changes are being made to maximize the impact and resonance of OTL’s journalism with sports fans.”
OTL’s impact journalism includes its investigation that led to the arrest of Conrad Mainwaring, a track coach accused of molesting 41 boys, and an exploration of the difficulty that some youth football leagues are having obtaining insurance and what it could mean for the sport at higher levels. OTL also investigated problems with concession food at sporting events. Most recently, an OTL investigation reported that a Los Angeles Angels employee had told the DEA about the longtime drug abuse by Tyler Skaggs, the Angels’ pitcher who died in a Texas hotel room the night before a game.
OTL has been recognized with 15 Sports Emmy Awards, four Edward R. Murrow Awards, three Peabody Awards and a DuPont Award.
This week, ESPN’s team of journalists and storytellers launched the new ESPN Daily, a weekday podcast hosted by ESPN senior writer and TV/radio commentator Mina Kimes. And last week, ESPN launched its new multi-platform franchise, ESPN Cover Story, the sports fan’s new monthly ticket to the biggest stories on the most captivating athletes – told with inside access, bold reporting and unforgettable visuals. In August, the debut episode of the new investigative docuseries Backstory, hosted by Don Van Natta Jr., aired on ESPN with the second episode due in January.
The noon SportsCenter Coast to Coast on ESPN will expand to 90 minutes (noon – 1:30 p.m.) starting in January.
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