Michael Todd "Mike" Tirico (/tᵻˈriːkoʊ/; born December 13, 1966) is a play-by-play announcer for ESPN's presentation of Monday Night Football. In addition, Tirico calls a multitude of programming for ESPN/ABC, including the NBA, golf, and tennis. He is also one of the anchors of the FIFA World Cup along with Bob Ley.
Tirico joined ESPN in 1991 as a SportsCenter anchor, after four years as Sports Director at CBS affiliate WTVH-TV in Syracuse, New York, during his undergraduate years at Syracuse University. Tirico is noted for his versatile nature and the variety of assignments he has handled for SportsCenter; Tirico has handled the play-by-play for ESPN's Thursday night college football package (1997 to 2005), college basketball coverage (1997 to 2002), NBA coverage (2002 to present), and golf coverage for ESPN/ABC (1997 to 2015). Tirico has also hosted studio coverage of various ESPN and ABC covered events, including a stint on ESPN's Monday Night Countdown (previously known as NFL Prime Monday) from 1993 to 2001 and ABC's NBA studio shows. He also broadcasts NBA games on ESPN/ABC, and usually does the NBA Finals coverage for ESPN Radio. He anchored the 2009 U.S. Open (tennis) and co-anchored the 2014 World Cup.
Tirico hosted his first show from WAER radio in Syracuse, N.Y., the station where he started his sports broadcasting career, on the campus of Syracuse University. Fellow Orange alum Bob Costas was his first guest. On September 20, 2007, Tirico began hosting the short-lived Mike Tirico Show on ESPN Radio from 1:00–3:00 pm weekdays (Eastern time). The show filled the empty seat left by Dan Patrick. During the spring of 2008, the title of The Mike Tirico Show, which featured Scott Van Pelt as a co-host, was changed to Tirico and Van Pelt. On May 19, 2009, Tirico announced he would be leaving the show to focus more on his television play-by-play duties, and the name of the show became The Scott Van Pelt Show.
Tirico's period at ESPN has not been without controversy. Two books about the network, ESPN: The Uncensored History (2000) by former New York Times sportswriter Michael Freeman and 2011's These Guys Have All the Fun (by Washington Post writers James Andrew Miller and Tom Shales), recount allegations of sexual harassment. Tirico, for example, was suspended by the network for three months in 1992 for multiple incidents involving attempted groping, sexual solicitation, and stalking of female co-workers.
Tirico is unsure of his heritage, as he is not certain who his biological parents are. He has stated, "Yeah. I’d like to find out the truth at some point, so I can answer questions for my kids" regarding his heritage and biological parents.