On Thursday, ESPN announced all of the broadcast options for the College Football Playoff National Championship Megacast (which is a mouthful), including the much-derided MNF Film Room feed on ESPNEWS, previously reported earlier in the day.
The traditional game broadcast, featuring Chris Fowler and Kirk Herbstreit on the call and Maria Taylor and Tom Rinaldi on the sidelines, airs on ESPN.
On ESPN2, we have the Field Pass broadcast. This will be hosted by Adam Amin and Steve Levy, who will be taking up residence on either sideline, calling the game from that angle while “simultaneously being joined by a rotation of ESPN analysts, notable personalities and celebrities throughout the game”.
ESPNEWS has the MNF Film Room broadcast, which doesn’t need much more elaboration. It’s going to be great fodder for those who have spent 2018 being critical of the new Monday Night Football broadcast team.
SEC Network has a special edition of Thinking Out Loud with Greg McElroy, Marcus Spears, and Alyssa Lang, who will watch the game and “bring hijinks, highlights and hilarity, while offering astute analysis and reaction throughout the game”. Okay, great.
ESPN Classic has the Sounds of the Game broadcast, which has no commentary.
ESPNU will air the Command Center broadcast, with a bunch of camera angles, ISO cams of Dabo Swinney and Nick Saban, and a variety of statistics and graphics.
ESPN Deportes, to the surprise of no one, airs the Spanish language broadcast.
ESPN3 has the BlimpCast (camera angle from the Goodyear Blimp, game called by Matt Barrie and Elle Duncan…inside the blimp), the TechCast (12 different feeds in a split-screen format), DataCenter (a whole lot of stats), SkyCam (self explanatory), High SkyCam (SkyCam, but higher!), Hometown Radio (the Alabama or Clemson radio feed instead of the ESPN commentators), and the All-22 feed (the elevated camera angle allowing all players to be shown, typically one of the more well-received feeds).
All in all, this is underwhelming. ESPN is rolling out a bunch of different camera angles, a bunch of multi-screen broadcasts, and….not a whole lot else. Analysis from coaches? Gone. Ridiculous party room with a bunch of ESPN personalities? Relegated to the sidelines. It really seemed like ESPN has dialed back the MegaCast this year, which is a damn shame because we used to have a variety of unique ways to watch one of the biggest games of the year.