NBC Sports Network takes over full US coverage of the English Premier League next season and its broadcast plans are reportedly coming together. After former ESPNer Rebecca Lowe was named as studio host, our friend Christopher Harris at EPL Talk is reporting Arlo White will be tabbed as the top play by play man for the league and Robbie Mustoe and Robbie Earle will be added as analysts.
The White move to the EPL is a no brainer. The Englishman has been the network's voice for MLS coverage after coming over from the Seattle Sounders and was fantastic at the Olympics last summer. He has a distinctive voice, gets up for the big moments, and can carry a broadcast. (Basically he's an English version of what Fox is hoping Gus Johnson will turn into as a soccer announcer.) I'd put him right alongside Ian Darke as a top play by play man, but he isn't a household name by any stretch.
As far as the analysts go, Mustoe and Earle both get the job done. If you're a fan of the EPL, you've probably heard Earle's voice on the syndicated international feed and he's also done some MLS work with NBCSN. Mustoe is down the ladder a bit at ESPN, but his analysis gets to the point in a way that's very easy to listen to. In fact, I'd say Mustoe is one of the better analysts in sports you've likely never heard unless you're a hardcore European soccer fan.
I could see White and Mustoe being the Darke and McManaman of NBCSN, traveling to the top game every week while the network syndicates the international feed for the rest of the games like Fox Soccer has done. Although they aren't as well known, the pairing of White and Mustoe would be equally as good as their ESPN counterparts. With Lowe and Earle potentially in the studio, NBCSN would be building a very solid EPL broadcast team.
The issue at hand will be what happens to the network's MLS coverage and who would step in for Arlo White. Former ESPNer J.P. Dellacamera would be the natural choice as a long-time MLS announcer as he worked for the network's extensive opening week coverage earlier this season.