ESPN Releases 2014 NFL Draft Broadcast Schedule

Courtesy:  ESPN

Courtesy: ESPN

Officials with ESPN have announced the full schedule for its networks’ coverage of this year’s NFL Draft.

Coverage of the 2014 NFL Draft begins next Thursday, May 8th on ESPN at 8pm ET. The broadcast will come live from New York’s Radio City Music Hall and will be simulcast on ESPN Radio beginning at 7pm ET. ESPN Radio’s broadcast of the NFL Draft will be anchored by Dari Nowkhah. Nowkhah will be joined by ESPN analysts Louis Riddick, Mark Schlereth, and ESPN.com senior NFL writer John Clayton. Freddie Coleman will host a post-first round broadcast beginning at 11:30pm ET. He will be joined by ESPN Insider Adam Caplan. Nowkhah and company will be back on the air the next morning, May 9th. The post-show broadcast that evening will come live at 11pm. It will be hosted by Kevin Winter. Winter will be joined by Adam Caplan for the broadcast. ESPN Radio’s draft coverage will also be available online at ESPNRadio.com.

ESPN will carry coverage of Round 1 live with limited commercial interruption in the broadcast’s first hour for the third straight year this year. Baltimore Ravens great and NFL veteran Ray Lewis will join NFL Draft host Chris Berman as part of ESPN’s NFL Draft commentator team for the first round of the draft. Berman, who is now in his thirty-fourth year of covering the NFL Draft, will also be joined by ESPN NFL analysts Jon Gruden and Mel Kiper, Jr. Kiper is himself in his thirty-first year of covering the draft’s first round. Suzy Kolber will be on the floor, bringing viewers live interviews with draftees throughout Round 1 while NFL Insiders Chris Mortensen and Adam Schefter will have reports from an additional set.

Trey Wingo will anchor the second through seventh round of the 2014 NFL Draft. Rounds two through seven will be carried on television on ESPN, ESPN2, and ESPNU. He will be joined by ESPN NFL analysts Trent Dilfer, Mel Kiper, Jr., and Todd McShay as well as NFL Insiders Chris Mortensen, and Adam Schefter and ESPN Front Office Insider Bill Polian.

As an added bonus for viewers, ESPN will have a number of reporters imbedded with various teams throughout the networks’ coverage of the draft. Ed Werder will have live reports from the Houston Texans’ camp while Josina Anderson and Britt McHenry will have reports from the Rams and Jaguars respectively. Sal Paolantonio will be embedded with the Browns and Michele Steele with the Buccaneers. Bob Holtzman will have all the latest from the Minnesota Vikings camp.

The complete broadcast schedule for the ESPN family of networks’ draft coverage is available below.

ESPN NFL Draft TV schedule (May 8-11):

Date Time (ET) Show Network
Thurs., May 8 2-3 p.m. SportsCenter Special: On the Clock ESPN
3-4 p.m. NFL Insiders (from Radio City Music Hall) ESPN
4-5 p.m. NFL Live presented by Experian ESPN
6-7:30 p.m. SportsCenter Special: On the Clock ESPN
7:30-8 p.m. SportsCenter Special: Draft Countdown presented by Oberto ESPN
8-11:30 p.m. NFL Draftpresented by Bud Light (Round 1) ESPN
11:30 p.m.-12:30 a.m. ESPNU Draft Recap: Day 1 ESPNU
Fri., May 9 2-3 p.m. SportsCenter Special: On the Clock ESPN
3-4 p.m. NFL Insiders (from Radio City Music Hall) ESPN
4-5 p.m. NFL Live presented by Experian ESPN
6-7 p.m. SportsCenter Special: Draft Countdown presented by Oberto ESPN
7-11:30 p.m. NFL Draftpresented by Bud Light (Rounds 2-3) ESPN/

ESPN2

11 p.m.-12 a.m. ESPNU Draft Recap: Day 2 ESPNU
Sat., May 10 10-11:30 a.m. SportsCenter Special: On the Clock ESPN
11:30 a.m.-12 p.m. SportsCenter Special: Draft Countdown presented by Oberto ESPN
12-8 p.m. NFL Draftpresented by Bud Light (Rounds 4-7) ESPN
Sun., May 11 12-1 a.m. SportsCenterU ESPNU
1-3 p.m. SportsCenter Special: NFL Draft Grades presented by Snickers ESPN

*Schedule subject to change.

More information on the NFL Draft and the ESPN family of networks’ NFL coverage overall is available online at http://www.facebook.com/NFLonESPN. To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

ESPN To Debut New NFL Mini-Series April 22nd

Courtesy:  ESPN

Courtesy: ESPN

It’s only March.  But as any sports fan knows, it’s always football season.  In keeping with that understanding, ESPN announced this week, that it will debut a new four-week series focused on the top prospects for the 2014 NFL Draft this Spring in anticipation of the upcoming NFL season.

ESPN Draft Academy will debut Tuesday, April 22nd at 10pm ET on ESPN.  The four-week series follows this year’s crop of NFL hopefuls as they prepare for the annual NFL Scouting Combine, their individual Pro Days, and the upcoming NFL Draft.  The mini-series will focus on Blake Bortles (Central Florida), Jadeveon Clowney (South Carolina), Marqise Lee (USC), Pierre Desir (Lindenwood (Mo.) University) and Bishop Sankey (University of Washington).  Each episode runs one hour and will follow Jon Grudens QB Camp.

Matthew Volk, ESPN Director of Programming and Acquisitions, explained the premise of the mini-series in speaking with the media.  “Draft Academy follows some of the most talented, talked-about prospects as they train in pursuit of a top spot in the 2014 NFL Draft,” he said.  “The show will give fans an intimate look at these players as they pursue their goals of making it to the NFL.”

More information on ESPN’s Draft Academy is available online at http://www.facebook.com/ESPN and http://espn.go.com.  To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Jon Gruden’s Quarterback Camp Returns This Spring

Courtesy:  ESPN

Courtesy: ESPN

Jon Gruden’s “Quarterback Camp” will return this Spring.

Gruden’s series of SportsCenter specials will return this spring for its fifth season.  Gruden mentors a handful of college football’s top quarterbacks in the series, as they prepare to take the next step in their careers.  This year’s installment of Gruden’s “Quarterback Camp” will see nine of college football’s top quarterback prospects.  Those names include the likes of 2012 Heisman Trophy winner Johnny Manziel of Texas A&M, two-time BCS National Champion A.J. McCarron of Alabama, and Teddy Bridgewater of Louisville.  The complete list of this year’s “QB Camp” participants is noted below.

2014 Gruden’s QB Camp participants:

Quarterback

School

Blake Bortles

Central Florida

Tajh Boyd

Clemson

Teddy Bridgewater

Louisville

Derek Carr

Fresno

Jimmy Garoppolo

Eastern Illinois

Jordan Lynch

Northern Illinois

A.J. McCarron

Alabama

Johnny Manziel

Texas A&M

Aaron Murray

Georgia

 

Gruden prepares a specialized lesson plan of sorts for each of the participants in his “QB Camp.”  Through his specialized plan, he points out to each prospect, a balanced look at both their strengths and weaknesses, allowing them to see where they need to improve in order to be successful NFL talent.  Over the past four seasons of his “QB Camp” Gruden has mentored no fewer than twenty-nine quarterbacks from twenty-seven schools.  Fourteen of those QBs went on to be NFL regular season starters.  Among the names that Gruden has mentored through his series are: Andrew Luck, Robert Griffin III, Cam Newton and current NFL Super Bowl champion Russell Wilson, of the Seattle Seahawks.

Gruden’s “QB Camp” moves this year to the ESPN Wide World of Sports Arena at Walt Disney World Resort outside Orlando.  It replaces Gruden’s Tampa office, where the “QB Camp” was previously held.  The new set will replicate his Tampa office, playfully dubbed the “Fired Football Coaches Association.”  The 220-acre facility also includes athletic fields, which will be used for quarterback workouts.

More information on Jon Gruden’s “Quarterback Camp” and all things NFL is available online now at http://espn.go.com/nfl and http://www.facebook.com/NFLonESPN.  To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at https://philspicks.wordpress.com.