ESPYS Red Carpet Host Cari Champion on Caitlyn Jenner’s Courage Award, Hollywood’s Sports Obsession (Video)

“Everyone wanted to be here, they wanted to see the who’s who of the sports world,”
new “SportsCenter” anchor tells TheWrap

Last Updated: July 16, 2015 @ 5:17 PM

Caitlyn Jenner will be at hand at the ESPYS to accept the Arthur Ashe Courage Award on Wednesday night, but don’t expect the former Olympian — who recently has made headlines with her transition from man to woman — to steal too much of the spotlight.

TheWrap spoke to Cari Champion, new anchor of ESPN’s “SportsCenter,” about Jenner’s appearance at the event on the red carpet before the stars arrived. As Champion told it, Jenner planned an “in and out” showing.

“From my understanding, she’s not doing any interviews. In and out, a quick message thanking people and fans for this opportunity, and then she’s leaving,” Champion revealed.

Champion continued, “I think there’s a lot of fanfare around her right now, and so she wants the opportunity to just accept the award, say what she has to say, deliver a message and then leave. She doesn’t want to take away from the event of the ESPYS.”

Jenner was by no means the only star power on the biggest night in sports, and Champion said this year’s ESPYS line up was even more impressive than ever.

“There are a lot of special things happening right now, it’s a time when there’s a lot of movement and transition in sports and everyone is really excited about it,” she told TheWrap.

With notable names in entertainment such as Britney Spears, Halle Berry, Ben Affleck, Rachel McAdams, Kiefer Sutherland and Vince Vaughn presenting awards, it’s clear that the ESPYS are the hottest ticket in town.

“Everyone wanted to be here, they wanted to see the who’s who of the sports world,” Champion said. “I think [Hollywood] celebrities are enamored by athletes, and vice versa.

“We had to turn people away, in terms of celebrities who want to present. We had too many celebrities, we had too many top athletes.

“LeBron James is here, Stephen Curry is here. We’ve got the Women’s U.S. soccer team. We’re celebrating the ladies tonight,” she added.

Watch TheWrap’s red carpet interview with Champion in the video.

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