Joel McHale to Host 2015 ESPYS

ESPN’s best-in-sports awards show will air on fellow Walt Disney station ABC for the first time ever

Joel McHale

Joel McHale is set to host the 2015 ESPYS, which will air this year for the first time on ABC.

The “Community” star is a seasoned host of “The Soup” on E!, and also emceed last year’s White House Correspondents’ Dinner. Plus, McHale is an athlete: The comedian was on the University of Washington’s football team for more than a year-and-a-half after originally being recruited for the school’s rowing program.

“Joel is an extremely talented performer, a unique voice and a huge sports fan,” said Connor Schell, senior vice president, ESPN Films and Original Content, who oversees “The ESPYS.” “His experience as a comedian and love of sports make Joel the perfect host for ‘The ESPYS’ inaugural broadcast on ABC.”

“The ESPYS” will be broadcast live on ABC Wednesday, July 15, at 8 p.m. ET from Nokia Theatre L.A. Live in Los Angeles.

The celebration kicks off with “SportsCenter at The ESPYS” and “The ESPYS Countdown Show Presented by Capital One” airing from 6-7 p.m. ET and 7-8 p.m. ET, respectively, on ESPN prior to the start of the awards. “The ESPYS” are executive produced by Mandt and MaggieVision Productions.

The best-in-sports awards raise more than $1 million annually for The V Foundation, the charity founded by ESPN and the late basketball coach Jim Valvano to promote cancer research.

“I’m thrilled to be hosting ‘The ESPYS.’ Just ecstatic,” said McHale. “After my stunning victory in the Iditarod this year by only using six Bichon Frises and a lamb, I think the sports world saw me as the logical host.”

Executive producer Maura Mandt added: “I’ve had the opportunity to work with Joel on previous projects, including when he presented at ‘The ESPYS,’ and he’s an enthusiastic fan whose talents will bring a new spin to the night’s celebration.”