Berman is no Blitzer: Toned-down version of Boomer to candidates

It’s Election Day, and I asked ESPN senior vice-president Rob King what had in mind.

“We’re getting out of the way and funneling everything in that regard to ABC News,” King said.

That’s just as well, because this is the one day where the final numbers go way behind ESPN’s coverage area.

ESPN, though, did contribute one last blast to the election last night. Chris Berman interviewed Barack Obama and Mitt Romney during halftime of last night’s Monday Night Football game.

It did seem strange that the final interviews I saw with the candidates came during a football game. Then again, maybe not.

Monday Night Football often is the No. 1 or 2 show on that night in prime time, and usually is first in the all-important male demographic. Want to reach the most people on the night before the election? Go to ESPN and its 13-14 million viewers. Certainly beats another sitdown with Wolf Blitzer.

The selection of Berman to conduct the interviews shows that he’s still the main guy at ESPN, despite what the critics say. Clearly, though, the questions were well-scripted. It also was interesting to see the toned-down version of Berman in front of the candidates. Perhaps, he should try to act that way more often.

Anyone expecting any news to come out of the interviews was off base. This was a football game, and Berman asked sports-related questions. Very impressed that the President knew Bears cornerback Charles “Peanut” Tillman had a big game Sunday.

Basically, the interviews served as one last campaign ad for the candidates. ESPN was more than happy to give them the platform.

One final question: Will Berman be conducting the interviews in 2016?




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