Personalities Pull Up for ESPN’s College GameDay Built by The Home Depot and ABC’s NFL Draft Shows in the “Paris of the Plains”

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Personalities Pull Up for ESPN’s College GameDay Built by The Home Depot and ABC’s NFL Draft Shows in the “Paris of the Plains”

  • College GameDay returns to the NFL Draft live at 5 p.m. ET on Thursday and Friday, 11 a.m. on Saturday on ESPN
  • A bounty of coaches join the pregame show on Day 1 including Nick Saban, Ryan Day and Kirby Smart
  • The Jonas Brothers and Marvel stars lead the celebrity guest list on ABC’s coverage

ESPN’s College GameDay Built by The Home Depot returns to the site of the NFL Draft for the sixth time, live from Kansas City, Mo., on Thursday, April 27, at 5 p.m. ET (ESPN). The special two-hour kick-off show and ABC’s NFL Draft presentation at 8 p.m., with the GameDay cast will focus on the stories behind the draftees and offer exclusive interviews with coaches from across the college football world, as well as a lineup of special celebrity guests.

Friday’s one-hour GameDay begins at 5 p.m., again ahead of the 7 p.m. ABC telecast, and wraps up the 2023 Draft coverage on Saturday with an 11 a.m.-noon show. Saturday’s Day 3 Draft presentation will simulcast on ESPN and ABC at noon.

Host Rece Davis will lead both the ESPN pregame show and ABC’s Draft presentation on Thursday and Friday joined by GameDay analysts and former Ohio State quarterback Kirk Herbstreit and Michigan Heisman Trophy winner Desmond Howard along with Draft analyst Todd McShay. GameDay analyst and Georgia great David Pollack joins the kickoff show with college football insider Pete Thamel. Laura Rutledge, Sam Ponder and Baylor’s Heisman winner Robert Griffin III will also join both shows. Rutledge will be live from the red carpet interviewing draftees as they arrive and will anchor Saturday’s edition of GameDay.

Coaches’ Corner

The week’s GameDay coverage will offer exclusive interviews with numerous head coaches from across the college football landscape. Thamel will catch up with Florida’s Billy Napier during the Thursday telecast, while Alabama’s Nick Saban, Ohio State’s Ryan Day and 2023 College Football Playoff National Championship head coach Kirby Smart of Georgia will join the GameDay desk.

Kansas head coach Lance Leipold is set to join the pregame show during Friday’s telecast and Illinois head coach Bret Bielema, Texas head coach Steve Sarkisian, Boston College’s Jeff Hafley and Dan Lanning of Oregon will all also join GameDay over the course of the three days.

Celebrity Sightings

The 8 p.m. show will be highlighted by a special appearance from the Jonas Brothers. The Grammy-winning group and Giants fans will join Davis, Herbstreit and Howard during picks 13-15 to share their unreleased song ‘Celebrate’ and to talk college football.

The Draft shows will include drop-in from Marvel universe stars during the ABC telecasts. Additionally, actor and Kansas City Chiefs superfan Eric Stonestreet will join the show on Friday.

Other guests will join Friday’s GameDay and ABC shows and Saturday’s Draft finale. Guest updates and additional announcements will be available via @ESPNPR.


Julie McKay

I joined ESPN in 2022 as a member of the communications department working on college sports. My passion for college sports came at an early age in a divided household (Big Ten Conference-divided, that is) and followed that to the University of Wisconsin-Madison (sorry, Dad). Four years in the Athletic Communications Department, along with internships with the Big Ten Conference, Big Ten Network and NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament, cemented my career path. After spending some time in sports media PR in San Francisco, I’ve spent five-plus years focused in golf, with stints at the American Junior Golf Association, Augusta National and Buffalo Agency, working with the USGA, Youth on Course and Destination Kohler, among others. Despite being a proud Wisconsin native, I’ll forever betray my home state as a lifelong Chicago sports fan. My dog Rizzo knows there’s always next year and wishes his namesake would return home to the North Side.
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