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Top 10 Popular Personalities Expected To Make Waves On ESPN BET’s Launch

Mark Strotman for Bookies.com

Mark Strotman  | 6 mins

Top 10 Popular Personalities Expected To Make Waves On ESPN BET’s Launch

ESPN BET will launch sometime in late November, providing prospective sports bettors in 17+ states the opportunity to start winning and earning with the worldwide leader in sports. Several factors will determine whether ESPN BET is successful—we think it will be for a handful of reasons—and marketing will be among them.

ESPN BET specifically relies on some of its most popular personalities in TV, radio, podcasts, broadcasts, and news. There are nearly 4,000 employees, and we believe these 10 will make the biggest impact when ESPN BET eventually goes live.

📅 Launch DateNovember 2023
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Who Will Be Promoting ESPN BET?

Pat McAfee

Is there any other choice at No. 1? The newly minted ESPN personality has arguably the biggest and best podcast in the sports world, with a three-hour runtime each day featuring guests that are some of the biggest names in sports (Aaron Rodgers, Nick Saban…the list goes on and on). 

McAfee is highly personable, appears on many different ESPN programs like "College Gameday", and has an active Twitter account with nearly 3 million followers. He’s a guy you’d love to grab a beer and watch a game with, meaning he’ll fit right in with online sports betting. Since his previously lucrative deal with FanDuel, you know he’s invested in this space. Pat will do just that for ESPN BET.

Scott Van Pelt

We’re putting SVP high on this list because he’s been a sports bettor, like us, for a long time. His "Bad Beats" segment on SVP SportsCenter is incredibly popular (and hard to stomach for bettors who have taken tough losses), and he’s constantly talking spreads, totals, moneylines, and odds on his nightly show. 

We also love that he appears towards the end of the night—whether you need a cleanse from a bad day, want to relive your best bets, or you’re looking for some Pac-12 After Dark action, SVP will be an awesome source of ESPN BET-centric offerings.

Stephen A. Smith

You knew you weren’t going to have to scroll too far to find this one. The man, the myth, the legend. Whether he’s spouting off about his Knicks, giving hot takes on the NFL, or anything else in between, ESPN will ride heavily on their highest-paid employee to push ESPN BET and everything else that comes along with it. We can’t wait to see which odds he’s disgusted by, tune in to where bettors can get great value on preposterous futures, or whether he’s willing to give the Knicks to cover a spread every once in a while.

Shannon Sharpe

We’re going to tentatively put Sharpe on this list, though he does have a current contract with "The Volume", which has a deal with DraftKings. Sharpe has been putting together parlays for bettors to use there, but it wouldn’t surprise us to see the frequent "First Take" guest eventually be brought over full-time by the worldwide leader in sports and used in some capacity by ESPN BET. We all know the incredible TV following he’s generated, and his Twitter account has 2 million followers.

Adam Schefter

Synonymous with NFL insiders, Schefter is the go-to source at ESPN for the latest and greatest scoops on the gridiron. He’ll need to tread carefully between providing information and supporting the ESPN BET brand, but we have confidence that he’ll do just that. We know ESPN BET will want to use his Twitter platform, which boasts 10.5 million followers.

Mike Greenberg

It’s too bad ESPN BET won’t initially launch in New York—it’s certainly on Penn Entertainment’s mind and could eventually happen—because Mike Greenberg will be delivering plenty of takes on those teams’ odds and futures. He’s the host of "Get Up!", meaning you won’t have to wait long each morning to hear about line movement, bad beats, and more. With a great lineup of sport-specific guests each morning, you’ll get the best analysis to kick off your day as you get ready for the evening’s games (and bets).

JJ Redick

Here’s a bit of a wild card, but one we think is going to resonate. JJ Redick has transformed from an NBA sharpshooter to an incredible NBA media personality. Between his color commentary on ESPN broadcasts and his highly successful podcast "The Old Man and the Three", Redick reveals himself as a level-headed, down-to-earth, cool talking head. That’ll play with the younger crowd, which will go a long way toward ESPN BET finding success in a highly competitive landscape.

Chris Russo

You know those group chats where you’re arguing with a friend about either side of a bet? You’ll certainly have a new friend with Chris “Mad Dog” Russo, who joined ESPN earlier this year as a "First Take" personality. He’s got some of the strongest (and loudest) opinions in sports media, so you know the hot takes will be coming in fast and furious around certain futures odds and spreads/lines of individual games. If nothing else, he’ll be incredibly entertaining when it comes to online sports betting.

Adrian Wojnarowski

Like Schefter, Wojnarowski will need to toe the line between being an insider and promoting ESPN BET. He’s on this list because of his massive following—6.1 million followers as of this writing—and his daily appearances on ESPN programs during the NBA offseason, regular season, and postseason. When Woj talks, people listen. Known for his Woj Bombs during free agency, the trade deadline, and draft night—he should also be in line for a few bombs surrounding ESPN BET.

Mike Wilbon and Tony Kornheiser

We’re grouping these two "Pardon the interruption" hosts because, quite simply, they’re like PB&J. Good on their own, and great when they’re together, Wilbon is a staple in the NBA media landscape, while Kornheiser steers the ship with the show, which airs daily on ESPN right before the start of most games. With spirited debates, great guests, and discussions on hot topics, we expect that those topics will soon include lines and odds rolled out by ESPN BET.

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About the Author

Mark Strotman for Bookies.com
Mark Strotman
Mark is a veteran sports betting journalist who has covered the Bulls and the NBA since 2012. His work has appeared on ESPN.com, FoxSports.com, The Chicago Tribune and Yahoo Sports. He regularly provides NBA betting picks, as well as in-depth sportsbook reviews and the latest promo codes for all the major sports gambling operators, including Caesars Sportsbook, BetMGM, DraftKings, FanDuel and more.