Herbstreit in 2009
|Occupation||College football analyst|
|College football career|
|Ohio State Buckeyes|
|High school||Centerville (Centerville, Ohio)|
Kirk Edward Herbstreit (; born August 19, 1969) is an American analyst for ESPN's College GameDay, a television program covering college football and a provider of color commentary on college football games on ESPN and ABC. He appeared annually as a commentator in EA Sports' NCAA Football until the series was put on hiatus following NCAA Football 14. From 1989-1993, Herbstreit was a quarterback for the Ohio State football team; he saw action in several games his junior season and was the starting quarterback throughout his senior season.
Herbstreit graduated from Centerville High School in Centerville, Ohio, a suburb of Dayton. As a quarterback for the Elks, he was the Ohio Gatorade Player of the Year as a senior. He also was a standout basketball and baseball player.
Herbstreit was the first player to commit to the Ohio State Buckeyes after the hiring of John Cooper as head coach in 1988. Herbstreit was a four-year letter winner as a quarterback at Ohio State University from 1989 to 1993. After waiting his turn as a Buckeye starter behind Greg Frey and Kent Graham, Herbstreit finally led the team as a senior in 1992. That year, he was a co-captain (along with linebacker Steve Tovar) and was voted team MVP. Herbstreit passed for 1,904 yards that season, including four 200-plus yard games, before losing to the Georgia Bulldogs in the Florida Citrus Bowl. Herbstreit set the Ohio State record for pass completions (28) in the rivalry game against Michigan, throwing for 271 yards in a 13-13 tie in 1992. The record stood until 2006, when it was broken by Heisman Trophy winner Troy Smith.
Herbstreit's father, Jim Herbstreit, had been a co-captain (along with offensive tackle Jim Tyrer) of the 1960 Ohio State team, and was later an assistant coach at Ohio State under Woody Hayes. When Herbstreit was named co-captain in 1992, the two became only the second father-and-son duo to have each been Ohio State captains. (James and Jeff Davidson were the first in 1989; Pepper and Dionte Johnson became the third in 2007.) Herbstreit graduated from Ohio State in 1993 with a degree in Business Administration. He lives in Franklin, Tennessee, with his wife and four sons. He also is known for a 2009 case in which he sued the IRS for changing an implied policy of allowing deductions for house donations to the fire department for training purposes.
Herbstreit is actively involved in multiple charities including the 2012 Buckeye Cruise for Cancer and The Make A Wish Foundation Ultimate Sports Auction.
He has lent his name to the Kirk Herbstreit National Kickoff Classic in Columbus, Ohio, and Arlington, Texas. According to the website, the Kickoff Classic "pits high school teams from the states of Ohio and Texas against prep football powerhouses from across the nation" over the Labor Day weekend. The games in Ohio are usually held at Ohio Stadium, while the games in Texas are held at AT&T Stadium.
In July 2007, Herbstreit served as a panelist for the series Who's Now alongside Keyshawn Johnson and Michael Wilbon. He was nominated for a 1997 Sports Emmy Award as television's top studio analyst. and wrote a weekly in-season column, "Inside The Game With Kirk Herbstreit," for The Sporting News.
Herbstreit joined ESPN in 1996, and has since gained roles as lead analyst on College GameDay with host Rece Davis, Desmond Howard, David Pollack, Lee Corso, and Maria Taylor. He, along with Taylor, also serve as the analyst and sideline reporter duo for ABC's Saturday college football primetime games alongside former GameDay host and longtime colleague Chris Fowler.
In 2018, Herbstreit was announced to replace Jon Gruden for night one of ESPN's NFL Draft coverage, as Gruden left to return to the then-Oakland, now Las Vegas Raiders. When ABC picked up rights to air the first two nights of the Draft, Herbstreit moved to ABC's coverage with his GameDay colleagues.
In 2020, Herbstreit announced the first game of theMonday Night Football Kickoff Week doubleheader alongside Chris Fowler.A week later, Herbstreit and Rece Davis will work a special Monday Night Football MegaCast on ESPN2 for the Saints-Raiders game, which will be the first ever NFL game to be played in Las Vegas, on a night in which Monday Night Football celebrates it's 50th anniversary.
Herbstreit and family left Ohio in 2011 due to harassment from Ohio State fans and moved to Nashville, Tennessee. His twin sons were athletes at Montgomery Bell Academy and play football at Clemson University.