ESPN GameDay to Air Live from Atlanta

by Bill Martin (@LSUBillMartin)
ESPN GameDay to Air Live from Atlanta

ATLANTA — ESPN College GameDay, the network’s popular college football kickoff show, will air live from Atlanta’s Centennial Olympic Park beginning at 8 a.m. CDT Saturday on ESPNU.

The expanded three-hour show continues at 9 a.m. CT on ESPN and features host Chris Fowler with analysts Lee Corso, Kirk Herbstreit and Desmond Howard.

Erin Andrews will join the College GameDay lineup, anchoring several segments during the first hour on ESPNU, and contributing reports, interviews and features during the ESPN portion of the show.

The show will preview the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game between LSU and North Carolina, which kicks off at 7 p.m. CDT in the Georgia Dome.

ESPN conducted interviews with quarterback Jordan Jefferson, linebacker Kelvin Sheppard and cornerback Patrick Peterson leading up to the contest. GameDay will feature head coach Les Miles miked up during the Tigers’ “big cat drill” from a practice during preseason camp.

This is the 13th time LSU has been involved in a game with ESPN College GameDay on location. The Tigers have made at least one appearance on the popular show in each of the past eight seasons. LSU is 8-4 all-time in games in which College GameDay is on hand.

College GameDay, entering its 24th season and 18th season of originating from a game, won the Sports Emmy Award in 2009 and 2007 for best weekly studio show and was the recipient in 2006 of the Outstanding Contribution to Amateur Football Award, given by The National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame Awards Committee.

This year, Fowler will begin his 21st season as host of the show. Corso has been affiliated with the show since its first year while Herbstreit – who won a Sports Emmy as best studio show analyst in 2009 — will begin his 15th year and Howard his fifth.

The 2009 College GameDay season was the most-viewed season for the program, averaging 1,711,000 households, 2,034,000 viewers and a 1.7 rating for increases of 14 percent (vs. 1,504,000), 12 percent (vs. 1,815,000) and 13 percent (vs. 1.5) over 2008. The previous high was set in 2007.

LSU Games with ESPN College GameDay on location:

Year, Matchup, Location, Result
1996, #11 LSU vs. #10 Alabama, Baton Rouge – PMAC ramps, L, 26-0
1997, #14 LSU vs. #1 Florida, Baton Rouge – PMAC ramps, W, 28-21
2003, #11 LSU vs. #7 Georgia, Baton Rouge – PMAC ramps, W, 17-10
2004, #4 LSU vs. Oregon State, Baton Rouge – Parade Grounds, W, 22-21 OT
2005, #5 LSU at #4 Alabama, Tuscaloosa, Ala., W, 16-13 OT
2006, #9 LSU at #5 Florida, Gainesville, Fla., L, 23-10
2007, #2 LSU vs. #9 Virginia Tech, Baton Rouge – Parade Grounds, W, 48-7
2007, #1 LSU vs. #9 Florida, Baton Rouge – Parade Grounds, W, 28-24
2007, #2 LSU vs. #1 Ohio State, New Orleans, La., W, 38-24
2008, #6 LSU at #9 Auburn, Auburn, Ala., W, 26-21
2008, #15 LSU vs. #1 Alabama, Baton Rouge – Old Front Nine, L, 27-21 OT
2009, #4 LSU vs. #1 Florida, Baton Rouge – Parade Grounds, L, 13-3
2010, #21/16 LSU vs. #18 North Carolina, Atlanta, Ga., ?