ESPN’s top news gathering official to talk ‘SportsCenter,’ more on campus

A Penn Stater who serves as the ESPN administrator in charge of the all-sports network’s most high-profile program and all of its news gathering efforts will be featured in a free public session at 7 p.m. Tuesday, March 18, at the Nittany Lion Inn on the University Park campus.

“A Conversation with Rob King,” presented by the John Curley Center for Sports Journalism, will be conducted in the Nittany Lion Inn Assembly Room. John Affleck, the Knight Chair in Sports Journalism and Society and director of the Curley Center, will moderate the wide-ranging question-and-answer session, which is free and open to the public.

King was promoted to his current role as senior vice president of “SportsCenter” and news at ESPN earlier this year. He previously served as senior vice president of content for ESPN’s digital and print efforts. In that role, he oversaw more than 200 editors, writers and designers across and its related sites. He worked with all of ESPN’s news, information and programming units to develop cross-platform integration and to develop cross-media franchises.

His duties with “SportsCenter,” the network’s flagship program, and overall news gathering efforts give him even more responsibility.

“We’re very excited to have Rob King returning to campus,” Affleck said. “It’s hard to think think of someone in a more influential role in sports journalism than Rob, given the tremendous reach of ‘SportsCenter’ and its impact on the rest of the industry. Hearing from him will be a great opportunity for our students and the State College community.”

In other roles at ESPN, King was vice president and editor-in-chief of and, before that, a senior coordinating producer in the studio production unit.

King began his sports journalism career in the newspaper business. He previously worked at The Philadelphia Inquirer, the Louisville Courier-Journal, the Courier-Post in Cherry Hill, N.J., and the Commercial-News in Danville, Ill. He graduated from Wesleyan University in 1984 and later attended Penn State, where he was a member of the staff at The Daily Collegian.

The Curley Center, housed in the College of Communications, explores issues and trends in sports journalism through instruction, outreach, programming and research. The first-of-its-kind center was established in 2003 with Distinguished Professional in Residence and Professor John Curley and Dean Doug Anderson serving as founding co-directors.

It was named the John Curley Center for Sports Journalism in September 2006, honoring Curley, whose more than five decades of newspaper experience includes work as a reporter, editor, publisher and, ultimately, president, CEO and chairman of the Gannett Co. He was the first editor of USA Today.

Last Updated January 09, 2015