Behind the Mic: ESPN Snaps Up Shane Battier; Kathryn Tappen Heads to NBC

ESPN has signed the recently retired Shane Battier as it latest men’s college basketball analyst. As part of the multi-year agreement, he will provide insights and analysis across ESPN’s studio programming and on select games from various top conferences (specific assignments are to be determined). As a member of the Duke Blue Devils, Battier won the 2001 NCAA National Championship and won the National Player of the Year and NCAA Final Four Most Outstanding Player awards. During a 13-year NBA career he won two NBA Championships with the Miami Heat in 2012 and 2013. During the 2013 NBA Draft, Battier joined ESPN’s coverage interviewing top Draft picks after they had been selected. In the 2006-07 NBA season, Battier appeared in the NBA Fundamentals series, in which players showcase several aspects of the game…

…Kathryn Tappen is joining NBC Sports Group to work on NHL Live, Football Night in America, Notre Dame Football, and to host additional studio programming. She will also be part of NBC Sports’ coverage from Super Bowl XLIX in 2015, and NBC Olympics’ coverage of the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics and 2018 Pyeongchang Olympics. Additionally, Tappen will continue to appear as a personality on NHL Network, where she has been the lead host of NHL Network’s flagship studio show NHL Tonight since 2011. As a hockey studio host with seven years of experience at NHL Network and NESN, as well as for NBC Olympics in Sochi earlier this year, Tappen will serve as a host for NHL Live and NHL Overtime, NBC Sports Group’s pre-game, intermission, and post-game NHL studio programs. Liam McHugh is NBC Sports Group’s lead NHL studio host. Tappen is also expected to fill in as host for additional NBC Sports studio programs. For Football Night in America, Tappen will serve as the on-site reporter covering the high-profile afternoon game. She will share these duties throughout the season with Alex Flanagan and Carolyn Manno. At Notre Dame, Tappen will report from the sidelines for all Fighting Irish games that air on NBC. Her first assignment comes August 30 when Notre Dame hosts Rice in the Irish’s first game of the 2014 season…

…ESPN reached a multi-year deal with Dari Nowkhah to host the soon-to-launch SEC Network and its weeknight news and information show, SEC Now. The deal comes on the heels of Nowkhah’s 10-year anniversary with ESPN. Nowkhah began his career at ESPN on SportsCenter and has been the main anchor for ESPNU since 2011. He was the primary SEC Studio host for the syndicated college sports package (produced by ESPN Regional Television) for the last four years. He also hosts CFB Daily on ESPNU and the Dari & Mel radio show co-hosted by NFL Draft expert Mel Kiper. In addition to his leading role on SEC Now, Nowkhah will continue to contribute his college sports knowledge and expertise on the Dari & Mel show and other ESPN Radio opportunities throughout the year…

…SiriusXM today has added Greg McElroy, who quarterbacked the Alabama Crimson Tide to a BCS National Championship title in 2010 and went on to play three NFL seasons, to its roster of hosts on SiriusXM College Sports Nation (channel 91). McElroy and SiriusXM’s Taylor Zarzour will host The First Team, a new morning show on SiriusXM College Sports Nation which will debut Monday, July 14, and air live every weekday from 7:00-10:00 am ET. McElroy and Zarzour will kick off the show live from SEC Media Days in Hoover, AL, where they will broadcast from July 14 through July 17. Zarzour joined SiriusXM in 2013 after hosting sports radio shows in a number of different markets in the south and can be heard regularly on the SiriusXM College Sports Nation and SiriusXM PGA TOUR Radio channels…

…Illusionist and magician Penn Jillette will serve as host for Sportsman Channel’s newest original program Camp Stew (premiering July 17), which will comprise a variety of clips from all facets of the outdoor lifestyle. The 10-episode, 30-minute program will feature host commentary from Penn Jillette in front of clips, including “Girls and Guns,” “Backyard Rambos,” “Wild Hunts and Cold Outdoors,” “Outdoor Pranks,” and “Unreal Shots.”…

…Veteran sportswriter Knox Bardeen has joined FOX Sports South as a writer for FOXSportsSouth.com. Bardeen will contribute to the Atlanta Braves, Atlanta Hawks, Atlanta Dream, Atlanta Falcons and college sports coverage on the region’s official website. Bardeen comes to FOX Sports South after working for Comcast Sports Southeast as a College Sports Analyst. He also was serving as the NFC South Lead Writer for Bleacher Report. Bardeen has also worked as a Falcons Rapid Reports Correspondent for CBS Interactive, a sports writer for the Macon Telegraph and a Sports Blogger for AOL FanHouse. Bardeen is the author of 100 Things Falcons Should Know & Do Before They Die.