Kornheiser Leaves MNF, Jon Gruden To Replace Him

Monday, May 18, 2009

What in the world just happened? Tony Kornheiser has been replaced in the Monday Night Football booth by former NFL Coach John Gruden. Seriously. I'm not kidding. The cause appears to be the schedule, and the fact that Tony is afraid of flying, but either way the PTIer has decided to call it quits....

Former Super Bowl-winning head coach Jon Gruden is joining ESPN’s Monday Night Football. The dynamic, outspoken and often fiery Gruden will join commentators Mike Tirico and Ron Jaworski in the booth when sports television’s signature series kicks off its 40th season this fall. Gruden will also contribute analysis throughout the year on ESPN Radio and other platforms, in addition to being a part of ESPN’s 2010 Pro Bowl telecast and Super Bowl and NFL Draft coverage.

Gruden replaces Tony Kornheiser, who has decided to step down after three years in the Monday Night Football booth.

“I would like to thank Tony Kornheiser for his many contributions to Monday Night Football the past three years,” said John Skipper, ESPN executive vice president, content. “He has been a big reason for the show’s success on ESPN. Pardon the Interruption is one of ESPN’s most important franchises and fans will continue to see Tony on the show and involved in other future ESPN projects for many years to come.”

Kornheiser added: “I am totally grateful for the MNF opportunity that I truly enjoyed the last three seasons. I feel we got better each year. My fear of planes is legendary and sadly true. When I looked at the upcoming schedule it was the perfect storm that would've frequently moved me from the bus to the air. I kept looking at the schedule the past month and wanted to find a way to quietly extricate myself. If I could handpick a replacement of a football guy, I would cast a net and drag in Jon Gruden. He is the two things you most want -- smart and funny -- and has the two things I don't -- good hair and a tan. I love PTI and am looking forward to continuing to yammer and yodel with Wilbon until the end of time.”
Man, now that is a complete and utter shocker right there. I obviously think that Kornheiser wasn't the right person for the job, but like he said, each year he got better. Some moments were still unbearable last season, but the three were finally starting to get it right. As far as Gruden goes, I enjoyed him on the NFL Network, and it's definitely a good hire, but I question his dedication. It's no secret that he wants to go back to coaching, and this could quickly become a one or two year fill-in.

Why they wouldn't go with someone proven like Matt Millen is beyond me, but good luck to them. Maybe this is finally the combination they've been looking for.



"Why they wouldn't go with someone proven like Matt Millen is beyond me"

I hope you mean the broadcast booth. And even so he's already going to be doing college football games so why increase his work?

SSReporters said...
May 18, 2009, 12:19:00 PM  

Thank God.

I said three thousand Our Fathers this past Sunday, maybe that's what did it.

Tony was truly awful from beginning to end.

He is a lowlife.

This might be interesting, with Gruden and Jaws there might actually be some chemistry and talk of things like, football, and the football that is being played on the field, and the plays that are taking place on the field.

No more of that gossipy garbage.

Thank God.

hollywood wags said...
May 18, 2009, 12:24:00 PM  

Millen will more than likely be on the second MNF team. They needed to get rid of the three Mikes. Bring back Nessler and Vermeil to go with Millen. That will be a GREAT team!!!

Nathan Brice said...
May 18, 2009, 12:28:00 PM  

How long is Gruden going to be in a booth though and no on a sideline. At the end of the NFL Network Draft coverage Gruden said he cannot wait to get back on the NFL sideline as a head coach. He specifically stated how he would love to coach Tim Tebow. I cannot imagine Gruden in that booth for long because his urge for coaching is so high. Let me be wrong though. Gruden is hilarious and provides great commentary, at least he did in the draft.

Brett said...
May 18, 2009, 12:28:00 PM  

Anyone notice that since Favre retired, his two biggest fawners in Madden and Kornholio left their posts?


SSReporters said...
May 18, 2009, 12:31:00 PM  

Nathan: There's no way ESPN would give up a chance to use the marketing tools of Mike & Mike in favor of Nessler, Vermeil & Millen (or any other combo).

Hmmm. Emmitt, Kornhole. Since these things come in threes (unless I missed someone), what unwatchable member of ESPN's NFL coverage is next to go?

May 18, 2009, 12:42:00 PM  

It's a sad day for fans of football, that's for sure.

Maynard said...
May 18, 2009, 12:45:00 PM  

Man, I'm tired of that whiney bastard. He will not be missed but seriously, Gruden?

Why does MNF always gravitate to douchebags?

Miller, Limbaugh, Thiesman, Kornheiser and now Gruden.

Ted said...
May 18, 2009, 1:00:00 PM  

That no talent ass clown is leaving MNF. YAY! He cites a fear of flying, but I suspect it is a fear that he knows jack shit about football, or sports for that matter. No longer do I have to gaze at his ugly mug when watching the Pack on Monday night. No longer do I have to hear about the Patriots or Colts when watching a key matchup in the NFC North or AFC North, or any other game that has nothing to do with his favorite teams. YAY!
This guy was the worst idiot ever. People talk a lot about Dennis Miller, but at least the substance of what he said had some bearing to the game, and revealed some small scintilla of knowledge about football.
Donuts to dollars says the bit about flying is a canard and a lie. The truth is this guy was an embarassment. Even the best games on MNF suffered from the drawback that I--and millions of others--had to listen t o this idiot. Make no mistake about it--this guy knows nothing about football, or sports for that matter. He also has proven incapable of actually commenting about the game, but ratheer just carried with his feelings or fantasies or preferences. Time and again he would talk about the Patriots when the Colts played, or talked about the ad nauseum about the Colts or Pats when neither of those teams were playing. Hell, he even talked about his favorite teams when the Pack or Bears were playing. Of course, I remember how said the a week two or week three game between Philly and Dallas was a must win game for the Cowboys. Jaws reprimanded him, sayings its still early. "Well the fans thiink so."
Anyway again this is a canard and a iie. He is bailing out because he was embarassingly bad. Am I wrong for wishing he died in a plane crash? Maybe I am, or maybe I am not!

F.W. said...
May 18, 2009, 1:08:00 PM  

AA, how soon do you think TK will be back on the radio now that he's no longer in the MNF contract that prohibited it? He's mentioned that he misses radio and even talked about doing a podcast of his own when he's been on On the DL.

pete said...
May 18, 2009, 1:28:00 PM  

Mike Greenberg is about the worst play-by-play announcer to have ever broadcast an NFL game. Golic is actually not that bad. Ditka is too grumpy to be on TV. Golic is the only guy who deserves to be back from that crew.

Nathan Brice said...
May 18, 2009, 1:30:00 PM  

Great, a commentator who won't criticize anyone because he wants to coach again!!! Why not just MT and Jaws???

GMoney said...
May 18, 2009, 1:34:00 PM  

Mike Tirico is on the clock. This may have been a message to him as well.

Nathan Brice said...
May 18, 2009, 1:42:00 PM  

I think Gruden will pick his spots and rip people.

Like Bill Callahan...or maybe, Dungy.

Safe targets.

Like SImeon Rice...Rod Marinelli.

hollywood wags said...
May 18, 2009, 1:43:00 PM  


mmmm beefy said...
May 18, 2009, 1:49:00 PM  

With Gruden officially in the ESPN stable, a weekly segment with Keyshawn seems imminent. That should be entertaining!

walnuts said...
May 18, 2009, 2:20:00 PM  

The final straw for me with Tony Kornheiser being in the MNF booth was during the '07 Chargers-Broncos game at Qualcomm when he kept insisting that nobody outside of San Diego knew who LaDainian Tomslinson was. It must have taken an incredible amount of restraint on Jaws' part to keep him from calling TK a blithering idiot on the air.

Good riddance!

May 18, 2009, 3:38:00 PM  

He also pulled some lowdown "not me, not me, I didn't say that, THEY said that" crap on Crennel during the Browns game.

Korny is just a lowlife slug.

And that's the best that can be said of him, outside of his annoying voice and stupid hair.

hollywood wags said...
May 18, 2009, 3:59:00 PM  

Maynard, you forgot the /sarcasm tag.

Even money says Mike Patrick and Joe Theismann reunite to join Gruden next season, unless Theismann takes Collinsworth's spot on NFL Network.

JamesCraven said...
May 18, 2009, 4:38:00 PM  

Blowhard Berman can now slobber all the Genius in person.

At least I can watch NFLN in relative peace with the Genius gone. Just need to get rid of Eisen, Sapp, Sanders and NFLN will be better.

At least until the NFL and Comcast resume their pissing match.

Anonymous said...
May 18, 2009, 9:18:00 PM  
Anonymous said...
Sep 26, 2009, 7:58:00 AM  

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