ESPN’s College GameDay To Kick Off with LSU-UNC in Atlanta

ESPN’s College GameDay, which has been expanded to a three-hour format (9 a.m. to noon ET), will kick off the 2010 season in Atlanta on Sept. 4 with a LSU-North Carolina SEC matchup. The game will be televised as part of the weekly Saturday Night Football series on ABC at 8 p.m. and marks the third consecutive year GameDay has premiered in Atlanta.

ESPNU will televise the new first hour of the show from 9-10 a.m. and it will continue to air on ESPN from 10 a.m. to noon. Each College GameDay location throughout the year will generally be determined on the preceding Monday.

New addition Erin Andrews joins host Chris Fowler (in his 21st season) and analysts Lee Corso (24th  season), Kirk Herbstreit (15th  season) and Desmond Howard (fifth season) on the new three-hour format. Andrews will anchor several segments during the first hour on ESPNU, and contribute reports, interviews, and features during the ESPN portion of the show.

College GameDay, entering its 24th season and 18th season of originating from a game, won the Sports Emmy Award in 2009 and 2007 for best weekly studio show and was the recipient in 2006 of the Outstanding Contribution to Amateur Football Award, given by The National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame Awards Committee. In addition, Herbstreit won a Sports Emmy as best studio show analyst last year.

The program is coming off its most-viewed season ever in 2009, averaging 1,711,000 households (up 14% from 2008), 2,034,000 viewers (Up 12%), and a 1.7 rating (up 13%).