Seth Meyers to host live airing of ESPY Awards
Seth Meyers has been tapped to host the 18th annual ESPYs -- the sports-oriented awards on ESPN -- on July 14. This year marks the first time that the kudos will air live on the cable net since 2003 when Jamie Foxx hosted. Meyers is the third "Saturday Night Live" regular to take on this gig, with Dennis Miller emceeing the first and second years beginning in 1993 and Norm McDonald overseeing the sixth edition in 1998. Last year, Samuel L. Jackson oversaw the awards for the fourth time, following hosting stints in 1999, 2001 and 2002.
This signature event of the sportscaster will air live from the Nokia Theatre in Los Angeles. This venue, across from Staples Center, is also the new home of the Emmy Awards. Until 2008, the ESPYs originated from the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood, the celebrated site of the Oscars.
In making the announcement, executive producer Maura Mandt said, "In the ‘anything-can-happen’ atmosphere that comes with doing a live program, there is no better host for the 2010 ESPYs then Seth Meyers. Not only is he one of the most brilliant comedians, his enthusiasm for sports is sure to create some of the most memorable moments in ESPYs history."
The ESPY Awards boast a range of categories topped by best male and female athletes. After nominations are announced in the coming weeks, fans will vote for their choices online. Last year's big winners were two 2008 Olympians -- swimming superstar Michael Phelps and all-around gymnast Nastia Liukin -- each of whom was the first to take home the award for their respective sport. The top sports movie was the biopic "The Express: The Ernie Davis Story" about the first African American to win the Heisman Trophy.
Tiger Woods holds the record with five wins -- tying with baseball's Ken Griffey Jr. in 1998 and then taking the top prize on his own from 2000 to 2002 and in 2008. The only other multiple male honoree is Lance Armstrong, who won the award from 2003 to 2006. On the female front, only soccer star Mia Hamm (1998, 2000) and golfer Annika Sorenstam (2006, 2007) have repeated as champs.
Photo: Seth Meyers and Andy Samberg at the 2009 ESPYs. Credit: ESPN