From the Zika virus to doping issues to refugee athletes, the upcoming Olympics in Rio faces no shortage of controversial – and, in some cases, dangerous – issues heading into this summer. Expect coverage on all of them, before and during the Games.
“I think we have to acknowledge these issues, and if they come up and have any effect on the game, we have to cover them,” legendary sports broadcaster Bob Costas said on CBS Sports Radio’s Ferrall on the Bench. “Your preference is that you present the drama and the theater and the excitement and all the appealing stories, but you have to be willing to do a journalistic job and become news people when necessary, and you can’t bury your head in the sand of Copacabana Beach, as appealing as that may be. You just can’t do it. Everybody watching this, even casual observers, knows going in that Rio faces an array of problems unlike previous Olympics, and so we have to address them – and we plan to.”
Costas, 64, has anchored 11 Olympics as a prime-time host – the most of anyone in broadcast television history. He has covered just about every major sporting event in the world and has no plans of stopping anytime soon.
“I like doing it,” he said of covering the Olympics. “I know I could do a few more if I was inclined to and it seems like NBC would allow me to do that if that’s what I wanted to do, but I’m just taking it case by case. I don’t want to quit after people have begun to want me to quit. I don’t want someone to come put their arm around my shoulder and say, ‘You know, Bob, it was a really good run. Wouldn’t it appeal to you to just be sitting under a tree sipping a margarita someplace? We’ve got it from here, pal. Thanks for everything.’ I will leave before there is a groundswell of support for my leaving, let’s put it that way. And I’ll do it on my own terms, I hope.”