Dan Le Batard is officially moving his talk show to 10 a.m. eastern on ESPN Radio, the slot formerly occupied by Colin Cowherd. And while Le Batard was one of Colin’s most vocal supporters, the move actually pits the 46-year-old in direct competition with the former ESPN host.
As reported by Inquisitr, Le Batard’s show will air in Cowherd’s former time slot from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Colin meanwhile, will begin his new version of The Herd on FOX Sports 1 from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m., pitting the former colleagues against each other from 12 p.m. to 1 p.m.
And as Awful Announcing points out, that’s probably not a good thing for Dan and his sidekick Stugotz.
“Despite his oft-criticized socioeconomic takes, which eventually landed him in some hot water and sped up his departure for Fox, Cowherd had substantial value to ESPN, especially on radio. It’s why many figured Bristol would spend big to keep him, even in an era of budget cuts. Le Batard did quite well on radio in the 4-7 p.m. slot, but he’s under a bigger microscope now; his show won’t be preempted for local shows as frequently now, and he now has the West Coast morning drive.”
In fact, Cowherd was recently named to The Hollywood Reporter‘s Top 10 Most Powerful Voices in Sports Media list adding extra pressure on Le Batard to compete.
“Cowherd, 53, has charmed fans with his smarts and impatience for sports figures who cough up platitudes…His radio show averaged more than 2.5 million listeners, a big number for a non-drive-time slot.”
One factor in Le Batard’s corner however is how Colin departed from ESPN back in July. Cowherd was dismissed after he made comments that inadvertently disparaged Domincans when comparing the complexities of baseball versus football.
“It’s too complex? I’ve never bought into that ‘baseball is too complex.’ Really? A third of the sport is from the Dominican Republic. Baseball is like any sport. It’s mostly instincts. A sportswriter who covers baseball could go up to Tony La Russa and make an argument and Tony would listen and it would seem reasonable. There’s not a single NFL writer in the country who could diagram a play for Bill Belichick.”
Cowherd did go on air to apologize for his remarks saying that he “could’ve made the point without using one country, and there’s all sorts of smart people from the Dominican Republic,” but at that point the damage was done. That he was already scheduled to depart to FOX Sports made the decision to cut ties from The Herd an easy decision for ESPN at the time.
[Colin Cowherd photo credit: Al Messerschmidt / Getty Images, Dan Le Batard image via USA Today]