After departing from her most recent position with Yahoo! News, Katie Couric returns to NBC for the first time since 2006, joining Mike Tirico in the booth at PyeongChang Olympic Stadium as co-host of the Opening Ceremony.
Couric, who left NBC in 2006 following a 15 year run as co-anchor of Today, partnered with Bob Costas to host the Olympic Opening Ceremonies in 2000, 2002 and 2004. Tirico, who left ESPN for NBC in 2015 will be hosting his first Opening Ceremony, but did host the 2016 Rio Olympics Closing Ceremony.
“During my years at NBC, I loved covering the Olympics and showcasing the hard work, dedication and perseverance of athletes from around the world. The Opening Ceremony will be a chance for South Korea to share its culture and customs and for the international community to celebrate this unparalleled display of athletic achievement and sportsmanship. There’s nothing quite like it,” said Couric.
During yesterday’s conference call introducing the Opening Ceremony hosts, a question was posed regarding potential political protests. Both Tirico and Couric agreed it’s something that will be important to cover if the opportunity presents itself. Tirico added he believes one of the issues with the NFL anthem protests is not asking the reason for the political statement.
“I think one of the things that was missed a bit with the NFL players that were kneeling, which I assume is the genesis of the question here and got a lot of coverage around the country, we need to know why, as well. It’s one thing to say somebody was kneeling, somebody was protesting. Sometimes we didn’t do as good a job as an entire group in the media identifying what that player was protesting,” Tirico said.
As usual, the Opening Ceremony television broadcast will air on tape delay during primetime, Friday, Feb. 9 at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT on NBC. However, NBC will for the first time live stream the Opening Ceremony with coverage from PyeongChang on Friday, Feb. 9 at 6 a.m. ET on NBCOlympics.com and the NBC Sports app. Though it’s the first time the Opening Ceremony will be live streamed, Olympic events have been available via streaming since the 2012 London Olympics.