Matt Lauer has exited NBC's "Today" show after allegations of sexual misconduct, which Savannah Guthrie and Hoda Kotb announced on the show Wednesday morning. His departure leaves a big hole in the "Today" team. Here are some potential replacements.
Fans are already lobbying online for the return of Ann Curry, who left "Today" in 2012. Since she's a veteran, she'd no doubt easily slide back in to the role, but since there was reportedly conflicts with NBC higher-ups, we're not sure how likely her return might be (or if she'd want the job).
The host of "The Voice" is already a familiar face on "Today," has plenty of experience with interviews and lots of charisma. Why not give him room to expand his journalistic chops with a higher profile role on the morning show?
The "Good Morning America" weatherman has 25 years under his belt anchoring a major broadcast, so he has the experience needed for the role. He tweeted Wednesday morning after the Lauer news broke that "Network TV needs a good scrubbing!"
Couric is a beloved figure in American journalism and would certainly be a welcome face for viewers. She worked with Lauer for nine years on the "Today" show before she moved on.
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Another "Today" alum, Vieira definitely has the experience needed to succeed in the role. The "Who Wants to Be A Millionaire" host is deft in balancing small talk with the million-dollar questions.
The former "Today" anchor comes across as a class act, which is something the NBC News morning show could sure use a touch of right now. With no "Real Sports" going on right now, the guy who recently appeared on "Finding Your Roots" should return back to his roots. Should Gumbel come back to "Today," we'd insist on Jerry Seinfeld granting him an interview while donning a puffy shirt.
The "Morning Joe" co-anchor also anchor's "Sunday Today," and has filled in for Lauer in the past. He's got the experience and seems like a logical pick.
Roker's lovable personality already delights viewers of "Today." If Roker wanted to forgo his weatherman duties, we could see him moving into Lauer's role.
Kotb co-hosts "Today" show's fourth hour with Kathie Lee Gifford, but she's also done other segments for the NBC morning show, and we could definitely see her taking on longer interviews and expanding her hosting chops.
Morales has defined her anchor abilities on "Today," "Dateline" and "NBC Nightly News." Her interviewing and hosting skills make her a great candidate to fill Lauer's shoes.
By many accounts, Elliott was actually brought in to NBC a few years back to eventually replace Matt Lauer on "Today." That obviously didn't work out, nor did his recent year at CBS News. But the "GMA" alum knows how to do these morning shows, so how about a little Lauer 2.0 Take 2?
The current Investigation Discovery host has done almost every job NBC News has to offer -- including hosting on the "Today" show. The former third-hour anchor could return for the first two, and maybe rub off in a positive way on her ultimate 9 a.m. successor, Megyn Kelly.
Alright, so Robin Meade is gainfully employed with her own morning show at HLN. But maybe it's time to step up to the big (broadcast) leagues. The country music singer and former beauty queen knows her way around a TV studio, and nothing topples the patriarchy like a little girl power.