NEW YORK (AP) – The biggest change for Americans watching the Winter Olympics on television this month will likely be the first face they see on the screen.
Mike Tirico is replacing Bob Costas as host of NBC’s prime-time Olympics coverage, which starts Thursday from South Korea. Costas was host for 11 Olympic games. NBC has groomed Tirico and he’s studied up on the bobsled and luge. Whether he’s suited for the role and accepted by the audience won’t become clear until he does it.
The job requires someone conversant in sports. But he also must be adept talking about history, pop culture and current events, including relations between North and South Korea. A sense of humor helps, too.