Erin Andrews‘ contract with ESPN officially expires at the end of the week. Monday evening John Ourand of SPORTSBUSINESS JOURNAL reported on Twitter:
Erin Andrews will be staying at ESPN, according to Jim Miller, who is teaming with Tom Shales to write the definitive book on the network.
Here’s Miller’s bio. After Ourand’s note tonight, I emailed and spoke with multiple sources familiar with the situation and was told that no contract has been signed.
ESPN’s only public statement on the matter came late last week after media reports ramped up speculation that Andrews could depart the network: “We are hopeful that Erin will remain at ESPN.“
Thanks to her recent tabloid and reality show-fueled celebrity, there’s no disputing Andrews can now demand a higher base salary covering entertainment news or working in show business than her present duties at ESPN.
From what I’ve been told, Andrews is considering staying at ESPN if she can make up that disparity with high-profile endorsements directly or indirectly facilitated by the network. (Think Golic’s “POT ROAST!!!”)
Her deal would be somewhat similar to how college football and basketball coaches are paid at many high profile schools. The coach gets a small base salary from the university and then large annual payouts from endorsement and media deals that are largely arranged by the school.
Andrews’ obvious dilemma in choosing her career path is that her celebrity will never be greater than it is right now. If she’s ever going to make the jump to entertainment news or show business, this will probably be her best (and only?) time to do it.
If I were her agent, I would tell her to move on from ESPN and give showbiz a shot.
Because of her on-air ability, work ethic and personality, ESPN and other sports opportunities will always be there. But working in, or covering show business may not be if she does another five years of N.C. State sidelines - thereby removing herself from the tabloid radar.