“The announcement certainly raised my eyebrow,” Mediaite columnist Joseph A. Wulfsohn told Fox News. “I think it’s ideal for any network to rely on in-house talent, but NBC has faced lots of inner turmoil in recent months.”
Couric will work alongside Mike Tirico, who is replacing Bob Costas as prime-time host of the games, for the opening ceremony on Feb. 9. She has hosted three previous opening ceremonies with Costas, with the most recent dating back to 2004.
NBC passing over Kelly has not gone unnoticed in the halls of Rockefeller Center. An industry insider who did not want to be named because of a relationship with NBC said the move is “definitely a slap in the face to Megyn.”
NBC traditionally sends its entire panoply of news stars to the games, and true to form, both the “Today” show and “Nightly News” will broadcast live from Pyeongchang for the duration of the competition, focusing their news programs almost entirely on Olympics coverage.
NBC News stars heading to South Korea include Guthrie, Kotb, Al Roker, Natalie Morales, Willie Geist, Craig Melvin, Lester Holt and Dylan Dreyer. NBC News is also sending at least eight on-air correspondents including legendary foreign correspondent Richard Engel, and even NBCNews.com is sending a correspondent, Eric Ortiz, to report for an exclusive SnapChat show.
During the Olympics, “Today” will broadcast from South Korea from the legendary “Portable Olympic Pavilion,” which has been used in multiple previous games.