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Howard Cosell Monday Night Football

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To produce this pioneering program, Cosell recruited a number of employees from outside the ranks of those that produced games, who he felt might be too invested in the success of the athletes and leagues to look at the hard news. He brought in Michael Marley, then a sportswriter for The Washington Post, Lawrie Mifflin, a writer for The New York Times, and a 20-year old researcher who quickly rose to an associate producer, Alexis Denny. As a sophomore at Yale University, Ms. Denny had been a student in a seminar that Cosell taught on the "Business of Big-Time Sports in America", and was selected by the Director of Monday Night Football to join their production crew. She took her junior year off to join Cosell's staff at ABC Headquarters in New York City, and produced many segments, including in 1983 a half-hour special report previewing the 1984 Olympic Games in Los Angeles. Despite the games being one of ABC's biggest investments, with a record-breaking 225 million dollar rights fee at the time, the 30-minute documentary-style program produced by Denny showed many sides of the questions about the viability of the Games themselves - from concerns about traffic, pollution and terrorism, to a look at how the sponsorship deals were structured.

In 1993, TV Guide named Howard Cosell The All-Time Best Sportscaster in its issue celebrating 40 years of television. [4]


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