Bob Costas '74 hands off Olympic torch to fellow Newhouse alumnus Mike Tirico '88

February 9, 2017

Note: Tirico will speak at the Newhouse School on Thursday, Feb. 23, at 8:30 a.m. in the Joyce Hergenhan Auditorium, Newhouse 3. 

Newhouse alumnus Bob Costas ’74 has hosted every Olympics since 1992. Starting with the 2018 games in PyeongChang, another Newhouse alumnus will carry on Costas’ tradition: Mike Tirico ’88.

The announcement was made this morning by NBC executives.  

“Bob Costas and the Olympics has been one of greatest pairings in sports broadcasting history, and there isn’t anyone better suited to inherit his mantle than Mike Tirico,” said and Jim Bell, president of NBC Olympics production and programming. “Mike’s natural gifts as a broadcaster and passion for storytelling are just two reasons he is the perfect choice to host the biggest, most distinguished sports event in the world.”

In an appearance this morning on the “Today” show, Tirico said he had grown up idolizing Costas. “I went to Syracuse in large part for college because Bob did,” he said. “I received a Bob Costas scholarship 30 years ago.”

Costas served as NBC’s primetime host for a U.S. television record 11 Olympics—every Olympics on NBC since 1992, including the 2012 London Games, which is the most-watched television event in U.S. history. Costas also served as NBC’s late night host at the 1988 Seoul Olympics.

In addition to his critically-acclaimed Olympic work, Costas has won 27 Emmy Awards—more than any sports broadcaster in history. He is the only broadcaster to have won Emmy Awards in sports, news and entertainment. Costas’ versatility has been recognized with Emmy Awards or nominations for play-by-play, hosting, interviewing, writing, feature reporting and commentary. He will continue at NBC, with roles in NBC Sports and NBC News programs.

Tirico joined NBC Sports Group from ESPN in July 2016. He made his Olympics debut last summer as an NBC daytime host and host of the Closing Ceremony in Rio. He has served as host of "Football Night in America," the most-watched studio show in sports, as well as The Open, The Ryder Cup and Breeders’ Cup horse racing. Tirico also handled play-by-play for "Sunday Night Football," "Thursday Night Football" and Notre Dame Football.