ESPYs: Joel McHale to Host

Evan Agostini/Invision/AP
Joel McHale

The 'Community' and 'Soup' star will emcee the sports awards during its first broadcast on ABC.

Community star and The Soup host Joel McHale will host the ESPYs, it was announced Friday on Good Morning America.

McHale previously hosted the White House Correspondents' Dinner in 2014.

"I’m thrilled to be hosting the ESPYs. Just ecstatic,” McHale said in a statement. “After my stunning victory in the Iditarod this year by only using six Bichon Frises and a lamb, I think the sports world saw me as the logical host."

ESPN Films and original content svp Connor Schell called McHale "the perfect host," adding, "Joel is an extremely talented performer, a unique voice and a huge sports fan,” he said in a statement.

The press release announcing McHale as this year's host notes that the Seattle Seahawks fan was on the University of Washington's football team for more than a year and a half after originally being recruited for the school's rowing program.

McHale appeared on GMA Friday morning to talk about his new gig. Although he joked that athletes and politicians, his audience at the Correspondents' Dinner, are very similar, he seemed a bit more serious when he talked about his different game plan for the sports awards show.

"Don't get hurt," he said. "Because they're professional athletes and they're skilled, and they could kill me. I'm worried about being hit by assorted types of balls, hockey sticks, baseball bats...I'm going to wear a helmet most of the show."

The ESPYs — the Excellence in Sports Performance Yearly Award — recognize the best moments from the past year in sports, saluting the leading performers and performances. The ESPYs also raise more than $1 million annually for The V Foundation, the charity founded by ESPN and late basketball coach Jim Valvano to promote cancer research.

The show will air for the first time on ABC this year after previously airing on sister cable network ESPN. The ESPYs will be broadcast live on July 15 at 8 p.m. ET from the Nokia Theatre L.A. Live in Los Angeles.

Watch video of McHale's GMA appearance below, in which he also explains what he thinks is going on in several photos.


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