Bob Costas won’t be at the Super Bowl, but he won’t be missing it.
Super Bowl LII was planned to be Costas’ last, but NBC announced this week that the longtime commentator would not be hosting the pregame show on Feb. 4. It was thought NBC might have yanked Costas for his comment in November that “the reality is that this game destroys people’s brains.”
But Costas dismissed that notion in an email to Sports Business Daily.
“The decision was mutually agreeable, and not only do I not have a problem with it, I am actually happy about it,” Costas told the website. “I have long had ambivalent feelings about football, so at this point, it’s better to leave the hosting to those who are more enthusiastic about it.”
Those duties — prior to the Eagles and Patriots showdown — now will be handled by Dan Patrick and Liam McHugh. Costas dismissed the notion that his comments in November were anything new.
“I have been making the same points for several years, often on NBC,” Costas said. “In halftime commentaries, interviews with Roger Goodell and other prominent NFL figures, appearances on CNN and elsewhere, I have addressed the issue of football and its undeniable connection to brain trauma many times. Why? Because the evidence is overwhelming and the effects are often devastating.
“It’s the elephant in the stadium at every game whether others choose to acknowledge it or not. And it’s not going away. So the idea that I am only now finding my voice on this, or that NBC was taken aback by what I said at Maryland is just wrong. It’s all simple and straightforward.”