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Joe Tessitore is an American national sports TV broadcaster.
Biography[edit | edit source]
Recent work[edit | edit source]
Joe Tessitore is best known for his television work in football, basketball, horse racing and boxing. He is currently the play by play broadcaster for Saturday Night prime time college football games paired with veteran commentator Matt Millen. Joe was the broadcaster of the 2013 Orange Bowl. Joe is also the primary studio host for ESPN's daily College Football Live.
In addition to his primary assignments as a College Football play-by-play commentator on ESPN and ABC he also is teamed with Sean Farnham on ESPNs College Basketball. Tessitore also produces documentaries for ESPN's award winning 30 for 30 series. In 2011 Tessitore executive produced the ESPN Film Roll Tide, War Eagle which premiered in November. In 2012 he was the consulting producer on ESPN's 30 for 30 featuring Bo Jackson. Tessitore is also ESPN's Heisman Trophy expert appearing on various shows and platforms throughout the season with poll results and historical analysis. Joe spent many years anchoring ABC/ESPN Horse Racing presentations including The Belmont Stakes and The Breeders’ Cup World Championships. Joe is also a popular longtime blow-by-blow boxing broadcaster on ESPN’s Friday Night Fights.
In August 2012 Joe was the subject of an extensive feature story titled, 'Tessitore becoming major voice of college football, one upset at a time," written by Stewart Mandel. http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2012/writers/stewart_mandel/08/06/joe-tessitore/index.html
For five years he had been the host of ESPN’s live New Year's Eve specials including RedBull New Year, No Limits and the debut of ESPN's Year of the Quarterback.
Among his most notable recent assignments Joe broadcast two of the most thrilling upsets of the 2011 college football season. He had the dramatic call of Iowa State's double-overtime win of #2 Oklahoma State, as well as Baylor's stunning last second victory over #5 Oklahoma. In 2010 Joe also was the play by play host for two of the biggest upsets of the year. On November 26, 2010 he was ESPN's play-by-play broadcaster for #19 Nevada's overtime upset of #4 Boise State. The loss broke the Broncos' twenty-four game win streak. Joe also was ESPN's host/anchor when Zenyatta's unbeaten streak was stopped. The champion race horse was defeated in the Breeders' Cup Classic by Blame. Zenyatta was 19-0 prior to that race.
In addition to his regular duties of football, horse racing and fights Joe has covered a wide array of sporting events for ESPN and is also a featured contributor for ESPN.com.
Tessitore has been honored for his on air work. Sports Illustrated's Richard Deitsch has twice named him a finalist for Sports Media Person of the Year. On January 18, 2010 he accepted an Eclipse Award on behalf of his ESPN production team for their Belmont Stakes broadcast on ABC. On June 4, 2010 the Boxing Writers of America presented Tessitore with the prestigious Sam Taub award for Broadcast Excellence. The Connecticut Boxing Hall of Fame has included Tessitore in their 2010 class of inductees.
Since 2004, Tessitore has been the voice for the top selling Fight Night video game series produced by EA Sports. Joe is considered an expert in many of the fields he covers. He is part of Ring Magazine’s rankings panel as well as a voter for the Heisman Trophy.
Through the years Joe has also worked play-by-play or host duties on The Contender, HBO pay-per-view, international pay-per-view, Showtime pay-per-view and many ESPN properties, including NCAA college basketball, Arena Football, High Stakes Golf, the PBA Tour, and the World Arm Wrestling Championships. Tessitore also has hosted numerous ESPN Classic Boxing shows and has reported for ABC’s Good Morning America.
In 2008, he was the host anchor of Big Brown's failed Triple Crown attempt in the Belmont Stakes. On December 31, 2007, he called motorcyclist Robbie Maddison’s World Record 300+ foot jump. On December 31, 2008, he presented Maddison’s jump up/down from the Arc de Triomphe at the Paris Resort on the Vegas strip. On December 31, 2009 Joe broadcast Travis Pastrana's world record rally car jump over Rainbow Harbor in Long Beach, California. On November 7, 2009 he was the host of Zenyatta's history making victory on the Breeders' Cup Classic, a broadcast which earned ESPN an Emmy nomination. On December 26, 2009 he was the broadcaster of USC's bowl victory over Boston College. It was the last game in the USC career of head coach Pete Carroll. On April 3, 2010, Joe was the lead host and ringside broadcaster for Bernard Hopkins victory over longtime rival Roy Jones Jr on pay-per-view. In October 2010 Joe had the call of LSU's dramatic last second win over Florida.
Joe has worked with numerous broadcast partners in his career. In the ABC/ESPN College Football booth he was long joined by Rod Gilmore. For boxing he is teamed ringside with Teddy Atlas. On ESPN horse racing he’s on the set along with Randy Moss and Hall of Fame jockey Jerry Bailey. He has also been teamed with Matt Millen, Todd Blackledge, Bill Curry, Mike Tomczak, Ray Bentley, Marcellus Wiley, Shaun King, Scott LeDoux, Sugar Ray Leonard, Roy Jones Jr, Bernard Hopkins, Nate Campbell and Shannon Briggs.
Tessitore’s distinct voice-over work has been used in several feature films, including Annapolis and The Breakup, plus numerous TV programs. He has also appeared in the TV drama The Dead Zone acting as himself in an episode.
Education[edit | edit source]
Tessitore graduated from the Carroll School of Management at Boston College with a degree in Marketing. For his college preparatory studies, Tessitore graduated from Christian Brothers Academy in Albany, NY.
Early career[edit | edit source]
His earlier work was in local television, with over eight-years as the lead sports anchor at WFSB Channel 3 in Hartford. Prior to joining WFSB, he was a sports anchor at WRGB channel 6, Albany-Schenectady-Troy, New York. He also spent time in the sports department at KXAS channel 5 in Fort Worth, Texas.
Personal life[edit | edit source]
Tessitore is a member of the National Italian-American Foundation. He is on the board of Directors for the Connecticut Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. Tessitore founded the annual Sportscasters' SuperBall for CF Research.