Tom Rinaldi, ESPN Essayist, Jumps to Fox Sports

Tom Rinaldi, the ESPN correspondent known for his enterprise features and video essays, has jumped to Fox Sports, a place that has in the past not been known for delivering such things.

He is expected to take up duties for Fox in 2021, “contributing across the network’s world-class portfolio of live events.”

“Tom is one of the all-time great people in this business and a generational storyteller,” said  Eric Shanks. Fox Sports’ CEO and executive producer\ in a statement. “The biggest events on Fox just got bigger because of Tom, and we are honored to have him as our newest teammate.”

While he has served as a sideline reporter for ESPN’s golf coverage and college-football events, Rinaldi is better known for his enterprise features and interview. It is Rinaldi who secured the first interview with Tiger Woods in 2010 after the famous golfer went through a period of personal turmoil.  In 2018, he snared the first in-depth interview with Urban Meyer, during a suspension from Ohio State for the way he handled domestic abuse allegations against one of his assistant coaches. His feature stories have appeared on ESPN programs such as “College GameDay,” “E:60,” SC  “Outside the Lines,” and “SportsCenter.” Rinaldi has been nominated in five separate Emmy categories, including writing, reporting, and feature storytelling, a total of more than 40 times.

His departure from ESPN comes amid an exodus of top content executives at the Walt Disney-backed sports-media giant. Connor Schell, the top executive overseeing programming at the network, is set to leave at the end of the year, as is Libby Geist, one of ESPN’s senior content executives,

“I’m beyond excited to join the great team at Fox Sports,” Rinaldi said, in a statement. “To contribute to the network’s incredible collection of live events, and to continue to tell the stories across those sports and in those venues, is such a fantastic opportunity. I can’t wait to get started.”

He is the author of  “The Red Bandanna: A Life, A Choice, A Legacy,” which chronicles the  tragic death of Welles Crowther, a former Boston College lacrosse player, volunteer firefighter and equities trader who lost his life while saving others in the 9/11 terrorist attacks. Rinaldi graduated from the University of Pennsylvania and earned a master’s degree from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism.


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