Why isn't Bob Costas hosting the Winter Olympics for NBC?

AOL.com editors
AOL.com

Why isn't Bob Costas hosting the 2018 Winter Olympics?

The longtime broadcast personality has hosted every Olympic Games on NBC -- 11 Olympics, to be exact -- since the Barcelona Summer Olympics in 1992, but he's been noticeably absent in the opening days of the network's first several days of coverage of the PyeongChang games.

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Costas actually announced his departure from Olympics coverage last year -- an off year for the Olympics -- stating that the reason for his decision to step aside was simply that he "felt now was the right time to step away."

"It has been both a privilege and an incredible personal and professional experience to have been part of NBC's Olympic coverage all these years," he said in a statement last February. "I'm especially appreciative of all the talented and dedicated people I worked for and with on those broadcasts. I always felt that, in a certain sense, I was carrying the ball for them."

See photos of Bob Costas:

"It's been a wonderful run," he continued. "But I just felt now was the right time to step away, and I'm grateful that NBC left that decision to me."

The 65-year-old made sure to note that he's not retiring, but rather entering the "Tom Brokaw phase" of his illustrious career. In other words, he'll now have more freedom to do selective special coverage for the network.

Replacing Costas is Mike Tirico, who contributed coverage at the 2016 Rio Olympics before joining NBC full-time last year. He had worked at ESPN for 25 years from 1991 through 2016. He covered Monday Night Football for 10 years and has covered a variety of major sporting events throughout his decades-long career.

In fact, as People notes, Tirico being chosen to replace Costas as the host of the Olympics has a special meaning: Tirico was the first recipient of the University of Syracuse's Bob Costas Scholarship back in 1987.

See photos of Mike Tirico:

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