June 7, 2023


Your Partner in The Digital Era

Michael Thompson Jr. Named ESPN Vice President, Programming & Acquisitions

ESPN has named longtime collegiate administrator Michael Thompson Jr. to the position of vice president, programming & acquisitions, doing work generally on ESPN’s university networks houses. In his new position, Thompson will provide as the stage of make contact with for ESPN’s small business with the Southeastern Convention, which include duty for SEC Network’s programming tactic, written content acquisitions, are living event scheduling and P&L, as very well as placing the very long-expression method for SEC Community and SEC Community+, and overseeing content and publication for SECSports.com, the conference’s web site. He will also oversee programming technique and scheduling for Longhorn Community, ESPN’s 24-hour network devoted to the University of Texas.

“College athletics, and specifically the Southeastern Conference, have been a frequent thread all through my and my family’s life for many years, and I’m thrilled for this new opportunity at ESPN,” Thompson stated. “It’s really the finest of equally worlds – the option to do the job with the proficient staff at ESPN on persuasive programming, effective storytelling and modern ways to achieve our viewers, mixed with continuing to get the job done with Commissioner Sankey, Charlie Hussey and the amazing staff at the SEC office, as nicely as my colleagues on campuses throughout the place.”

Thompson brings a prosperity of expertise from throughout the higher education sports activities landscape, combining for much more than a ten years in the executive ranks at both Ole Pass up and Texas A&M. He was most not too long ago the Deputy Athletics Director for External Relations and Business Advancement at Texas A&M, spending virtually 3 many years in his job along with Director of Athletics Ross Bjork. Thompson served in a comparable position at Ole Pass up with Bjork, and notched a nine-year tenure in Oxford.

“We’re so enthusiastic to welcome Michael to ESPN,” said Ilan Ben-Hanan, ESPN senior vice president, programming & acquisitions. “His deep connections and robust associations through the faculty sports activities community will serve us well as we carry on to improve and evolve our higher education networks enterprise.”

Thompson carries a powerful standing as an progressive and collaborative chief, possessing not too long ago served as the President of NACMA (Countrywide Association of Collegiate Marketing Administrators) and boasting an expansive resume in branding, advertising and sponsorship in the non-public sector before transitioning to intercollegiate athletics in 2010. He’s an award-successful executive, managing a team that was honored with the 2019 Technology Innovation Award by the National Affiliation of Collegiate Directors of Athletics (NACDA).

At A&M, he led unified initiatives developed to improve revenue opportunity, extend the Aggie model both nationally and globally, and even more improved opportunities for engagement. Furthermore, Thompson spearheaded cross-departmental initiatives with numerous entities pertaining to external communications and promoting, ticketing, licensing and merchandising, information and facts technology and multimedia legal rights.

Whilst in Oxford, Thompson was the SEC Network point of make contact with and served as the university’s representative on the SEC Enthusiast Working experience functioning group, main the team’s investigate attempts. For 7 decades, he was also an adjunct professor in integrated promoting communications at Ole Pass up, his alma mater.

“I’m extremely grateful for the assist of my loved ones, Ross’s leadership and have confidence in more than the previous 12 decades, and ESPN’s confidence in me for this position,” Thompson shared. “I cannot wait to get started off.”

Thompson will be based at SEC Network’s headquarters in Charlotte, N.C.