Pardon the Interruption
Tony Kornheiser and Michael Wilbon face off in the nation's capital on the day's hottest topics.
About the Host
Tony Kornheiser & Michael Wilbon
Tony Kornheiser, the longtime Washington Post sportswriter and columnist, is one of ESPN’s most popular on-air personalities as a co-host of Pardon the Interruption (PTI). Kornheiser and fellow Post sports columnist Michael Wilbon have co-hosted PTI (M-F, 5:30-6 p.m. ET) since the show’s debut on October 17, 2001. Highlighted by the type of contentious but good-natured verbal sparring that the two engaged in for years at the Post, the program has increased ratings and viewership numbers each year since its inception with its unique, fast-paced, wide-ranging and humorous discussion of the day’s most important and interesting sports news and more. In addition to the 30-minute PTI show, Kornheiser and Wilbon’s “Big Finish” segment appears in the opening 15 minutes of the 6 p.m. edition of SportsCenter. Also, daily editions of PTI are available for download — and among the most popular offerings — on both the ESPN PodCenter platform and Apple iTunes stores. From 2006-08, Kornheiser was a booth commentator on ESPN’s Monday Night Football, demonstrating his unique ability to inform and entertain viewers. Only the third non-former player to serve as a commentator on MNF (joining the legendary Howard Cosell and comedian Dennis Miller), Kornheiser helped MNF become the most-watched series in cable television history in its first three years on ESPN. During Kornheiser’s time on MNF, he and Wilbon also took PTI on the road on Mondays during the NFL season from the site of ESPN’s games where they were joined by analyst Ron Jaworski for Five Good Minutes segments. In addition to his ESPN role and former job at the Washington Post, Kornheiser returned to the radio airwaves in February 2007 as host of the popular “Tony Kornheiser Show” on Washington Post Radio (1500 AM and 107.7 FM, weekday mornings 8:30-10:30 a.m. and rebroadcast 10:30 a.m. -12:30 p.m.) in the nation’s capital. The program also airs on XM Satellite Radio. Kornheiser joined ESPN in November 1997 as host of ESPN Radio’s Tony Kornheiser Show, which premiered January 5, 1998 and continued until March 2004. His radio show previously aired exclusively on WTEM-AM in Washington, D.C. beginning in 1992. He also has appeared frequently on ESPN’s Sunday-morning roundtable program, The Sports Reporters. Kornheiser, who started at the Washington Post in 1979, continues to write for the paper’s website today. In 2007, both he and Wilbon received the prestigious Eugene Meyer Award, which recognizes employees who exemplify the principles embodied by the paper’s former owner and publisher — journalism, business sense and hard work. Kornheiser has been a sports columnist there since 1984 and for many years also wrote for the Style section, attracting a large following for his humorous musings on topics ranging from presidential politics to his teenaged children, his elderly father and the behavior of his dog. These columns have been compiled in three books – Pumping Irony, Bald as I Wanna Be, and Back for More Cash. In 2008, Kornheiser was inducted into the National Jewish Sports Hall of Fame. Kornheiser graduated from Harpur College (now Binghamton University) with a degree in English in 1970. He began his career in journalism right out of college at Newsday before going to the New York Times in 1976. He is married and has two children. Michael Wilbon is one of the nation’s most respected sports journalists and an industry pioneer as one of the first sportswriters to broaden his career beyond newspapers to include television, radio and new media. A co-host of ESPN’s Pardon the Interruption and a NBA studio analyst for KIA NBA Countdown on ABC and ESPN, Wilbon left The Washington Post in December 2010 after 31 years to assume an expanded role as a columnist for ESPN.com and ESPNChicago.com. Wilbon and his former Washington Post colleague Tony Kornheiser have co-hosted PTI since the show’s debut in October of 2001. Highlighted by the type of discussion and verbal sparring the two engaged in for years at The Post, the popular weekday sports news and commentary show features wide-ranging discussion of the day’s news and events. PTI earned the 2009 Sports Emmy Award in the “Daily Studio” category and the show continues to increase its ratings and viewership each year. Named an NBA studio analyst in 2006, Wilbon regularly contributes to NBA news and information programming across ESPN platforms. He also appears weekly on ESPN Radio 1000 in Chicago, with Scott Van Pelt on ESPN Radio and with Kornheiser on ESPN980 in Washington. He joined The Washington Post in 1980 as a sports reporter, after two summer internships at The Post, and was a columnist from 1990-2010, dealing as much with the issues of the day as they related to sports as what transpired on the fields or courts. During his years at The Post Wilbon edited two books with NBA legend and Basketball Hall of Famer Charles Barkley, “I May Be Wrong But I Doubt It” and “Who’s Afraid of a Large Black Man,” both of which made the New York Times best-seller list. For more than a decade Wilbon appeared as a panelist on WRC-TV-4’s “Redskins Report” and “Full Court Press” with host George Michael. In 2009 Wilbon was honored by the National Association of Journalists with the organization’s Lifetime Achievement Award. Two years earlier he and Kornheiser received The Post’s prestigious Eugene Meyer Award which recognizes employees who exemplify the principals embodied by the newspaper’s former owner/publisher. In 2001 he was recognized by Sigma Delta Chi, the Society of Professional Journalists, as the top sports columnist in America. In March of 2011 he was inducted into the D.C. Sports Hall of Fame for his coverage and commentary on sports in and around the Nation’s Capital. Born and raised on the South Side of Chicago, Wilbon graduated in 1980 from Northwestern University, where he is now a member of the Board of Trustees, and where he was inducted into the inaugural class of the Medill School of Journalism’s Hall of Achievement in 1997. In June 2010 Wilbon delivered the commencement address at his alma mater. He is a graduate of St. Ignatius College Prep in Chicago, and resides in Bethesda, Md., and Scottsdale, Arizona, with his wife, Sheryl, and son, Matthew.