Skip to main content

Paul Finebaum Hasn't Signed A New Deal With ESPN, Some Speculate He Could Leave

ESPN radio host Paul Finebaum is arguably the biggest voice in college football, and if the Worldwide Leader doesn't shape up, it could lose him to another network in the near future. Finebaum, who hosts 'The Paul Finebaum Show' every weekday from 3-7 p.m. ET, has reportedly not signed an extension to remain with the network he joined back in 2013.

Finebaum, who is wildly popular in SEC country, signed a five-year deal back in 2013 - meaning it runs up this year. According to Sporting News, Finebaum and the network have not had "meaningful" conversations about keeping him onboard.

In fact, the publication is reporting that ESPN and Finebaum's agents, Creative Artists Agency, are playing a game of "chicken."

As you'd imagine, most big-time personalities are signed to extensions long before their contracts are up. That isn't the case here.

"Finebaum could be a free agent in a month, but there's been radio silence," one source told SN. "Usually with a guy this big, these things are wrapped up in advance."

Finebaum obviously has huge reach at ESPN - and some of that is because of the network itself. But he's also one of the few personalities in sports that might be able to survive on his own - or with another network. Remember, he didn't come up on ESPN. He built his following before he got there.

ESPN has invested a great deal into college football, so this likely isn't a case of the network going in another direction when it comes to coverage. It could come down to money.

One thing is for sure - wherever Finebaum goes, he'll have his followers. But leaving ESPN would decrease his reach to the casual fan. Only time will tell whether they come to a deal.