Press Release

Posted by Gracie Blackburn on January 24, 2013

ESPNU Expands National Signing Day for Eighth Consecutive Year

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10 Continuous Hours to Start the 2013 College Football Season: Reporters Embedded at 13 Schools; 17 On-Air Player Commitments; Guest Studio Analysts Gene Chizik and Derek Dooley

ESPN kicks off the start of the 2013 college football season with the most comprehensive National Signing Day coverage to date on Wednesday, Feb. 6 with the10 hour ESPNU National Signing Day Special at 9 a.m. ET on ESPNU, live look-ins from SportsCenter throughout the day, and accompanying reporting on ESPN’s RecruitingNation.com. The special will also be available on WatchESPN and ESPN3, in addition to being simulcast on ESPN from 3:30-4 p.m.

ESPNU’s eighth annual special will include at least 17 of the nation’s leading recruits revealing their college decision live and reporters coast-to-coast for up-to-the-minute information across ESPN platforms. ESPNU will be embedded at 13 of the nation’s top teams all day interviewing coaches, and providing up-to-the-minute news on each team’s freshman class as the commitments are faxed in. ESPN’s RecruitingNation.com will also have reporters at high school announcements and in-depth analysis on its 14 team dedicated nation sites.

In addition to the extensive lineup of live reports, Rece Davis and Dari Nowkhah will again host the network’s all-day studio coverage from Charlotte, N.C. They will be joined by ESPN’s national recruiting director Tom Luginbill and recruiting analyst Craig Haubert, along with college football analysts Mike Bellotti and Rod Gilmore, plus special guest analysts Gene Chizik, former Auburn head coach, and Derek Dooley, former Tennessee head coach.

2013 ESPNU National Signing Day Highlights:

  • Signing Day Staple – Luginbill: Since National Signing Day began on ESPNU in 2006, the network has expanded its coverage every year with more programming and a greater presence around the country. One constant has remained in Luginbill, ESPN’s national recruiting director, providing recruiting analysis all year long on ESPN Recruiting Nation, in addition to commentating high school and college football games. In recent years he has been joined in the booth and at the desk by recruiting analyst Haubert.
  • Call Me Maybe: National Signing Day marks the first day of the 2013 college football season on the ESPN networks and the incoming freshmen class still includes 25 undecided players in the ESPN 150 and 44 in the ESPN 300. At least 17 of the nation’s leading undecided recruits will make their college announcement live on the network during the telecast. Thirty-three players have announced their decisions on Signing Day on ESPNU since 2006.
  • Lucky #13: ESPNU will be reporting live from 13 of the nation’s top teams with coach interviews and up-to-the-minute news on the team’s recruiting class as the commitments arrive via fax:
  • Be Our Guest: Former SEC head coaches Chizik (Auburn) and Dooley (Tennessee) will join the ESPNU desk as guest analysts with insight into their experiences with the day last year and first-hand knowledge of what it’s like to recruit in a conference that has nine schools ranked in the Top 20 class rankings.
  • We’ll be Right Back, After This: During the telecast, team rankings, ESPN 300 player rankings and breaking news will be featured in a real-time recruiting side panel – similar to the NFL Draft – that will remain on screen throughout the entire 10-hour program, including commercial breaks.
  • Alert!: The ESPN College Football App, released at the beginning of the 2012 season, will alert fans of every signing by a recruit in the ESPN 150 personalized to their team preferences.
  • Gridiron Grades: RecruitingNation.com will have expanded team rankings, grades for each team in a BCS conference and video analysis from its team of scouts and reporters. In addition, RecruitingNation’s network of 14 team sites will be providing comprehensive coverage.
  • Practice Makes Perfect: ESPN The Magazine’s “Perfect” issue hits newsstands Friday, Jan. 25 and includes a look at the surprise seasons of Texas A&M, Notre Dame, and Ohio State from a recruiting standpoint.
  • Tweet, Tweet: Follow the recruiting conversation with #SigningDay and join in on Twitter or via chat on ESPN’s RecruitingNation.com.
  • Pregame Warm Up: In anticipation of Signing Day, ESPNU will air a two-hour preview special, ESPNU National Signing Day Preview Show, on Tuesday, Feb. 5 at 5 p.m.
  • That’s a Wrap: ESPN3 will have expanded coverage and wrap-up shows from Florida State, Georgia Tech, Miami and North Carolina.

 

ESPNU
The 24-hour college sports television network airs more than 650 live events annually and offers over 1,000 original studio shows. ESPNU has seen a steady increase since its inception on March 4, 2005 and is now in over 74 million households. The brand is also available in high definition on ESPNUHD, now in over 20 million homes. The network has long-term carriage agreements with all 10 of the top multichannel TV providers – Cablevision, Charter, Comcast, Cox, DirecTV (Channel 208), DISH Network (Channel 141), Mediacom, Time Warner Cable, Verizon FiOS TV and AT&T U-verse.

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Photos: http://bit.ly/149qOjg

Media contact: gracie.blackburn@espn.com;