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#pounditFriday, July 12, 2024

Is Shannon Sharpe going to succeed Stephen A. Smith on ‘First Take’?

Shannon Sharpe smiling

Jan 24, 2016; Denver, CO, USA; Denver Broncos former tight end Shannon Sharpe in attendance against the New England Patriots in the AFC Championship football game at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Shannon Sharpe is joining ESPN and will be one of Stephen A. Smith’s debate partners on “First Take.” Could this just be the first step in something larger? That’s what one reporter speculates.

Sharpe will begin on ESPN’s “First Take” on Sept. 4 and will appear on the show Mondays and Tuesdays. He has also found a new home for his podcast.

Front Office Sports’ Michael McCarthy believes that Sharpe could eventually succeed Smith as the host of the show. He notes that Smith has two years left on his ESPN deal and has made noise about wanting to host late-night TV or potentially go into entertainment, politics or acting.

Having Sharpe in the fold could give ESPN a natural successor to Smith.

Sharpe served as a co-host on “Undisputed” with Skip Bayless for seven years before leaving for ESPN. He was known for being a trash-talker as a player, and he certainly continued his talking as a co-host with Bayless. He has proven through his podcast that he can carry his own show too, which would be a necessary skill if he were to eventually replace Smith.

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