Joe Valerio, Sports Reporters producer for majority of its 30-year run on ESPN, dies at age 71

Joe Valerio, who oversaw the majority of the production of ESPN's Sports Reporters during the show's 30 years on the air, has died at age 71.

The Sports Reporters aired every Sunday morning from October 1988 through May 2017, and Valerio took charge of producing the show in 1989. The show featured newspaper columnists from around the country debating the most important sports stories each week.

"We started at a time when there was no other show like it on national TV. For so many sports fans, it became appointment viewing, and for all of us working on the show, we couldn't wait to come back the next week," Valerio said in May 2017 as the show ended its run.

Before joining ESPN, Valerio was a columnist for the New York Post when he was in his 20s and also worked as a producer for ABC and CBS Sports.