Charissa Thompson makes her debut at 5 p.m. today as permanent co-host on ESPN's "SportsNation," opposite Colin Cowherd. The pair will continue the off-beat tradition of discussing the day’s hottest and weirdest sports topics weekdays on ESPN2.
Thompson, a familiar face to the "SportsNation" audience thanks to her guest appearances, joined ESPN in September of 2011 and has served as host of ESPN2’s "Numbers Never* Lie." Prior to joining ESPN, Thompson appeared on multiple sports networks, including The Big Ten Network, Versus, NFL Network, Speed Network and Yahoo! Sports.
Playbook had a few minutes with Thompson before she went on the air:
Congratulations! What’s your favorite part of the show and what twists will you bring?
"I love that you can be you on SN. I can make a complete fool out of myself, which isn’t hard to do. Its free-flowing fun format is right up my alley!"
Now that it’s your full-time gig, think you’ll treat co-host Colin Cowherd any differently?
"I won't treat Colin any differently. I have a sarcastic sense of humor, so I'm sure people will think I am being mean to him but, in fact, it’s the opposite!"
In your last gig on “Numbers Never* Lie,” you had to study a lot of stats. What will you be studying for this show?
"I think it's important to continue to study facts and all things sports-related, but this show is also heavy in pop culture and current events. It's not just limited to sports."
Former co-host Michelle Beadle broke her ankle walking on campus. Someone said you broke your ankle in an aerobics class? Really?
"I broke my ankle working out and broke my finger, which required surgery two months ago, playing football."
Have you looked up the definition of Charissa on Urban Dictionary? That’s quite flattering. How did your family come up with that name?
"I haven’t looked up the meaning. My dad saw my name in a Sports Illustrated Swimsuit edition (classic) and he liked the name! I'm sure he did!"