NBC taps Mayock to replace Haden in broadcast booth

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With Pat Haden turning in his headset for a corner office at Heritage Hall, NBC has turned to NFL Network analyst Mike Mayock to provide color commentary during Notre Dame broadcasts. Mayock will be in the booth along side Tom Hammond on September 4 when the Irish host Purdue to kick off the Brian Kelly era at Notre Dame, NBC Sports’ 20th season broadcasting Notre Dame football.

“Mike’s knowledge of and passion for college football has resulted in him becoming one of the most respected voices in the game,” said NBC Sports executive producer Sam Flood. “He possesses a relentless work ethic and perfect pedigree as a former player and son of a coach. We are excited to add him to our team.”

Mayock’s done some incredible work at the NFL Network, contributing on shows like Playbook and NFL Total Access, but it’s his work as an NFL Draft analyst and on-location at the NFL Scouting Combine in Mobile that has me excited.

If you’ve seen Mayock on TV at all, you’ll know that he does his homework. Whether its the knowledge base he has as a former defensive back in the NFL or being the son of a college football coach, Mayock’s got a firm grasp on the Xs and Os of the game, and every time I watch a game he’s covering I find myself learning something new, one of the best compliments I can pay to a color analyst.

“As the son of a coach and someone who has been around football my entire life, my favorite part of sports television has always been broadcasting games,” Mayock said. “The fact that I will now provide commentary on one of the most historically important teams in the history of college football on NBC Sports makes me about as happy as I can be as a sports broadcaster.”

I realize complimenting the broadcasting choice of your employer is hardly a shock, but I’m legitimately happy with the naming of Mayock to the broadcasting team, and the trio of Tom Hammond, Mayock, and Alex Flanagan make one of the best in college football. There had been plenty of names bandied about since Haden announced his decision to take the athletic director job at USC, and Mayock’s name was never seemed to be on the short list. That said, you’ll be hard pressed to find a guy with a better grasp of football than Mayock, and I look forward to hearing him this fall.

(Added bonus: Mayock’s a member of the Boston College Hall of Fame for his exploits as a football and baseball player so we’ll still be able to field complaints that our announcers hate Notre Dame…)

I look forward to catching up with Mayock in the future and getting his opinion on the Irish — including some draft projections for preseason All-Americans Kyle Rudolph and Michael Floyd.