This week in the sports media and marketing ecosystem, ESPN hires Jeff Passan away from Yahoo to be the Schefter of baseball, Disney appoints a new CTO of its Streaming and International Division, and the World Surf League hires a President of Content and Media for WSL Studios.
For job openings and more on who’s moving where, check out the Hashtag Sports Weekly roundup.
ESPN has announced the hiring of Jeff Passan who’s spent the past decade-plus with Yahoo. The company plans for him to be its top breaking-news insider on MLB. He is set to begin after the new year and will be asked to be as prolific as Schefter and Wojnarowski, ESPN’s top insiders in their respective sports. Passan is expected to make appearances on TV, but will not be featured on game broadcasts right away.
Disney’s tapping into its subsidiary, ESPN, to hire Aaron LaBerge as the first CTO of its newly formed Direct-To-Consumer and International segment, reporting to chairman Kevin Mayer. LaBerge previously served as ESPN’s EVP and chief technology officer, where he lead the design and development of the sports programmer’s next-generation data, video and audio platforms. The DTCI businesses include all Disney networks outside of the U.S.; ESPN+; the Disney-branded direct-to-consumer streaming service; and Hulu.
The World Surf League has announced the hiring of Erik Logan, who will join the team as president of content, media, and WSL Studios. In this role, Logan will lead the growth of their content offering, which includes the creation of WSL Studios and all live and non-live content and media, in addition to global distribution across all of the WSL’s owned and operated channels. WSL is also developing a DTC membership offering, a key part of their portfolio that he will also be responsible for. Logan is currently serving as the president of the Oprah Winfrey Network, which he’s been instrumental in transforming into one of the top cable networks. He will begin his new role at the WSL in January 2019.
After 29 years as NBC’s highest-profile golf commentator, Johnny Miller is set to retire. Miller, who’s been their lead analyst since 1990, will be replaced by Paul Azinger. Azinger’s situation is interesting because he will remain in his current role on Fox Sports’ broadcasts of the U.S. Open and U.S. Women’s Open, while also filling the seat vacated by Miller at NBC. The announcement has drawn comparisons to Alex Rodriguez’s current setup as a baseball analyst for both ESPN and Fox.
Know someone with a new gig who should be featured? Submit a tip.
Get Hashtag Sports in Your Inbox
Learn how to connect with the next generation of sports fans
Leave this field empty if you’re human:
See all stories from Talent Shifts
Barstool Sports CEO, Erika Nardini hired and focused on creators and content with women as the driving force.
Grabyo’s President, Americas, Mike Kelley, believes live and on-demand sports video content will change the face of fan engagement in...
Chris Martin shares what he loves about creativity, the emotional connection to basketball, and how a group of diverse minds...
Data Skrive's Eric Ames talks about Sports betting in a world that has been changed due to the pandemic.
In his role as Founder & Chairman, Donn Davis has helped PFL to become the fastest growing league in sports and has secured the valuable market position as the #2...
Hear from professionals in college content creation and Instagram's Will Yoder about how in-house college sports content can improve program branding.
With Gen Z increasingly favoring short-form, positive content, sports marketers can connect with a new audience by producing content on TikTok.
Engaging the modern fan requires understanding modern platforms.