A popular sports commentating team is moving from ESPN to NBC Sports. The Wall Street Journal reports that the duo known as the Men in Blazers, a soccer commentating team, is making the shift.
The move comes as soccer is gaining in popularity in the U.S. The Men in Blazers are television producer Michael Davies and writer Roger Bennett. They will have a weekly Monday night show on NBC Sports, and will also work on radio and will contribute as writers and TV personalities to various NBC Sports platforms.
Their work with NBC will begin soon after the 2014-15 Premier League season starts later in August, the report notes.
“Messrs. Davies and Bennett, who have hosted a podcast about soccer for several years, were already popular among dedicated U.S. soccer fans before they began making television appearances on ESPN during the World Cup in Brazil. They have a shared lingo with fans — whom they call GFOPs, or Great Friends of the Podcast — and have hosted raucous live shows across the U.S.,” the article notes.
During the World Cup, the pair broadcast nightly appearances on ESPN from a tiny closet, which helped them gain additional fans, the story adds.
“These guys are intelligent, hardworking and have a great humor and wit,” NBC Sports Group Vice President of Original Programming Ron Wechsler said. “We saw how they showcased their talent in Rio at a very significant event, and that’s how we plan to showcase their talent. We want to be true to the brand that they’ve established.”
Michael Davies, left, and Roger Bennett — the Men in Blazers