ESPN to Debut New Format for “First Take” with “Michael Irvin Mondays”

ESPN’s signature morning debate show, First Take will unveil its exciting new format beginning Sept. 6. The new format will continue to star Stephen A. Smith – who has been the show’s featured commentator on a permanent basis for almost a decade – and host Molly Qerim Rose – who has commanded the First Take desk since 2015 – alongside a team of marquee guests.

  • Pro Football Hall of Famer and NFL Network analyst Michael Irvin – who has gone head-to-head with Smith in countless unforgettable moments – will start each week of First Take, beginning September 6 and after every NFL Sunday, joining Smith and Qerim Rose for the full two-hour show on Mondays.
  • He and Smith will debate the week’s key on-the-field moments and under-the-radar stories, while also providing fans with insider news and can’t-miss analysis heading into that week’s Monday Night Football matchup and week ahead.
  • The rest of the week, Smith and Qerim Rose will be joined by ESPN’s industry-leading roster of analysts and insiders across sports, including:
    • Paul Finebaum
    • Keyshawn Johnson
    • Mina Kimes
    • Kimberley A. Martin
    • Monica McNutt
    • Jessica Mendoza
    • Chiney Ogwumike
    • Dan Orlovsky
    • Kendrick Perkins
    • Marcus Spears
    • Brian Windhorst
    • Damien Woody
    • And many more
  • Each week will culminate on Friday with Heisman Trophy Winner and SEC Network analyst Tim Tebow and Smith debating all things college football heading into Saturdays throughout the season.
  • In addition, First Take will also continue to regularly welcome signature celebrity guests from across sports and entertainment to the show.
  • Max Kellerman’s last episode of First Take was on September 1, as he will be joining ESPN Radio’s morning show alongside Keyshawn Johnson and Jay Williams on September 7 and debuting a new television series with details to be announced soon.

Upcoming First Take Highlights:

  • First Take is heading back to school with the return of HBCU Wednesdays throughout the month of September.
  • Smith – a Winston-Salem State alumnus and HBCU Week ambassador – and Qerim Rose will virtually spotlight and celebrate HBCUs by featuring one university every week, with debate questions from students, live shots from campus, special guests and much more.
  • The series started Wednesday, September 1 with Alabama State. Upcoming Wednesday’s will feature:
    • September 8: Florida A&M
    • September 15: Texas Southern
    • September 22: Hampton

What they’re saying:

  • Antoine Lewis, senior coordinating producer, First Take: “This new format will pair Smith with new voices and perspectives every day of the week who will challenge him on their specific area of expertise in a completely new way. Stephen A., Molly and a lineup of A-list guests will definitely continue to provide fans with all they’ve come to expect from First Take and much more. We’re excited to get going!”