Tony Reali has a new multiyear contract at ESPN, the network announced this morning. Included in the release was the following information, every component of which boggles the mind.
Reali is entering his 20th year on-air, having started as Stat Boy on Pardon The Interruption back in 2001 at the wise old age of 22. He was named full-time host of Around the Horn in February 2004 and since then has presided over more than 3,800 shows in which the points don't matter.
One need not be an expert to know that's a lot of television.
Although the figures are a closely guarded secret, one can do some quick back-of-the-envelope math to discover Reali is somewhere around 5,000 late-afternoon/early-evening shows deep into his tenure at ESPN. ATH remains a reliable staple and it would not surprise me one bit if it continued for another 17 or 20 years.
All of this to say, we could be looking at some historic numbers whenever Reali decides to hang up his mute button. There's a decent argument to be made that he has a fringe case already for enshrinement in the network Hall of Fame, or at the very least, have his sport coat retired and raised to the rafters.
Slight diversion here: would you go to an actual ESPN Hall of Fame? Big-time nerd but not only would I go, I would like to be a voter if such a thing ever comes to pass.
If Reali keeps on chugging, it's within reason he'll reach 10,000 shows. Ten thousand!
It's just an absurd number but it also seems like something I could be blogging about in 2042 telepathically or however the CMS operates then. Kinda looking forward to it.