Joe Tessitore is an American national sports TV broadcaster.
Joe Tessitore is best known for his television work in college football on ESPN and ABC. In December 2013 he was introduced as the new face of the SEC Network. He will be the host of SEC Nation, paired with former Heisman Trophy winner Tim Tebow. Joe also can be seen working college basketball, horse racing and boxing. He is currently the play-by-play broadcaster for ESPN's Saturday Night prime time college football games. Joe is also the primary studio host for ESPN's daily College Football Live. Joe has been the broadcaster of the 2013 and 2014 Orange Bowl.
Tessitore has also produced documentaries for ESPN's award winning 30 for 30 series. In 2011 Tessitore executive produced the ESPN Film Roll Tide, War Eagle. In 2012 he was the consulting producer on ESPN's 30 for 30 featuring Bo Jackson. Tessitore is also ESPN's Heisman Trophy expert appearing on various shows and platforms throughout the season with poll results and historical analysis. Joe spent many years anchoring ABC/ESPN Horse Racing presentations including The Belmont Stakes and The Breeders’ Cup World Championships. Joe is also a popular longtime blow-by-blow boxing broadcaster on ESPN’s Friday Night Fights.
In August 2012 Joe was the subject of an extensive feature story titled, 'Tessitore becoming major voice of college football, one upset at a time," written by Stewart Mandel. http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2012/writers/stewart_mandel/08/06/joe-tessitore/index.html
For five years Tessitore was the host of ESPN’s live New Year's Eve specials including RedBull New Year, No Limits and the debut of ESPN's Year of the Quarterback.
Joe has broadcast some of the most thrilling games in recent college football. In 2013 he was the broadcaster of Penn State's upset of unbeaten Michigan in four overtimes. He also broadcast the Ole Miss last second upset of #6 LSU, as well as #21 South Carolina's double-overtime upset of previously unbeaten #5 Missouri. He had the dramatic call of Iowa State's double-overtime win of #2 Oklahoma State, as well as RGIII's last second TD pass for Baylor's stunning last second victory over #5 Oklahoma. In 2010 Joe also was the play by play host for two of the biggest upsets of the year. On November 26, 2010 he was ESPN's play-by-play broadcaster for #19 Nevada's overtime upset of #4 Boise State. October 2010 Joe had the call of LSU's dramatic last second win over Florida. Joe also was ESPN's host/anchor when Zenyatta's unbeaten streak was stopped. The champion race horse was defeated in the Breeders' Cup Classic by Blame. In College Basketball he was the ESPN broadcaster for Illinois' last second come from behind victory over #1 Indiana.
In addition to his regular duties of football, horse racing and fights Joe has covered a wide array of sporting events for ESPN and is also a featured contributor for ESPN.com.
Tessitore has been honored for his on air work. Sports Illustrated's Richard Deitsch has twice named him a finalist for Sports Media Person of the Year. On January 18, 2010 he accepted an Eclipse Award on behalf of his ESPN production team for their Belmont Stakes broadcast on ABC. On June 4, 2010 the Boxing Writers of America presented Tessitore with the prestigious Sam Taub award for Broadcast Excellence. The Connecticut Boxing Hall of Fame included Tessitore in their 2010 class of inductees.
Since 2004, Tessitore has been the voice for the top selling Fight Night video game series produced by EA Sports. Joe is considered an expert in many of the fields he covers. He is part of Ring Magazine’s rankings panel as well as a voter for the Heisman Trophy. On April 3, 2010, Joe was the lead host and ringside broadcaster for HBO PPV's Bernard Hopkins victory over longtime rival Roy Jones Jr on pay-per-view.
Through the years Joe has also worked play-by-play or host duties on The Contender, HBO pay-per-view, international pay-per-view, Showtime pay-per-view and many ESPN properties, including NCAA college basketball, Arena Football, Golf, the PBA Tour, and the World Arm Wrestling Championships.
Tessitore’s distinct voice-over work has been used in several feature films, including Annapolis and The Breakup, plus numerous TV programs. He has also appeared in the TV drama The Dead Zone acting as himself in an episode.
Tessitore's broadcasting career began 1991 at KXAS-TV, an NBC affiliate in the Dallas–Fort Worth metroplex. In 1994 he briefly moved to WRGB (CBS) in Albany, New York before joining WFSB-TV (CBS) in Hartford, Connecticut in 1995. Tessitore took over the primary sports anchor role in 1997.
In February 2002 began calling boxing on ESPN as part of "Tuesday Night Fights" and "Friday Night Fights." In 2003 ESPN made Tessitore full-time, replacing Bob Papa on Friday Night Fights, plus college football and college basketball broadcasts. Tessitore had previously done local broadcasts of UConn Huskies football.
Tessitore graduated from the Carroll School of Management at Boston College with a degree in Marketing. For his college preparatory studies, Tessitore graduated from Christian Brothers Academy in Albany, NY.
Tessitore is a member of the National Italian-American Foundation. He is on the board of Directors for the Connecticut Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. Tessitore founded the annual Sportscasters' SuperBall for CF Research.
- Howell, John (May 21, 2003). "Tessitore Going To ESPN". Hartford Courant. Retrieved September 29, 2013.
- Amore, Don (April 25, 1997). "Tessitore Is On Scene 5 More Years". Hartford Courant. Retrieved September 29, 2013.