Dan Rather to voice a JFK Assassination anniversary report for ESPN

(Photo courtesy of ESPN Outside the Lines)

As we approach the 50th anniversary of the JFK Assassination, various networks have been rolling specials to remember the day. ESPN is no different. On Sunday, it will offer a report on Outside the Lines looking back on the NFL's decision to play games just two days after President John F. Kenedy was killed. It was a difficult weekend for the nation as anyone who was alive then can attest. 

Based on a conversation with Kennedy press secretary Pierre Salinger, then-NFL Commissioner Pete Rozelle ruled that the league would play games as scheduled, a decision he would later regret. Giving ESPN an added boost for its piece on the issue is former CBS newsman and Evening News anchor Dan Rather who was in Dallas on November 22, 1963. 


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He will voice the piece and give some perspective on the weekend of the Assassination. If you haven't seen Rather since he unceremoniously left CBS in 2006, he's been hosting "Dan Rather Reports" on AXS-TV and has made various appearances on other networks as an analyst on politics and also providing his thoughts on the Kennedy Assassination.

For a look on what Rather did in Dallas for CBS 50 years ago, here's his description of watching the Zapruder film of the assassination. He was the only network correspondent to have seen the film and due to legal reasons at the time, CBS could not air it so Rather had to describe what he had watched.


The Outside the Lines piece on "Rozelle's Decision to Play" will air Sunday on Outside the Lines on ESPN2 at 8 a.m. ET and again on ESPNews at 9 a.m. ET. 

Rather has produced his own special on the Kennedy Assassination for AXS-TV and that will air on Monday at 8 p.m. ET. 


Ken Fang

About Ken Fang

Ken has been covering the sports media in earnest at his own site, Fang's Bites since May 2007 and at Awful Announcing since March 2013. He provides a unique perspective having been an award-winning radio news reporter in Providence and having worked in local television. Fang celebrates the three Boston Red Sox World Championships in the 21st Century, but continues to be a long-suffering Cleveland Browns fan.