The United States Sports Academy’s 2012 Ronald Reagan Media Award winner is Bob Costas, who has been the primetime television host of a record nine Olympic games.
Costas, who joined NBC Sports in 1980 and has the longest tenure of any of the network’s sports announcers, presided over the most watched TV event ever in the United States with more than 219.4 million American viewers tuning in during the 17-day event. The NBC primetime broadcast of the Olympics averaged 31.1 million viewers.
The Academy’s Ronald Reagan Media Award, named in honor of the 40th President of the United States, is presented annually to an individual for outstanding contributions to sport through broadcasting, print, photography or acting. The individual, like this year’s award winner, should exhibit imagination, excitement and genius in kindling a keen public interest and appreciation for the role of sport in modern society.
During his nearly 40-year career, Costas has handled a wide array of assignments, including play-by-play, studio hosting and reporting. He now hosts NBC’s “Football Night in America” studio show and provides some commentary during NBC’s Sunday night game—the highest rated series on American prime-time television with as many as 20 million viewers a week.
He also serves as co-host of NBC’s coverage of the U.S. Open, Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes. Costas hosts a regular interview show titled MLB Network Studio 42 with Bob Costas as well as special programming, and provides play-by-play for select live Thursday Night Baseball games.
Costas, who won the Academy’s Regan Media Award in 1991, has won a record eight National Sportcaster of the Year awards from the National Sportscasters and Sportswriters Association, and was inducted into that organization’s Hall of Fame in 2012. In addition, Costas has won 23 Emmy awards—more than any sports broadcaster.