Phoenixville's Kevin Negandhi Rises to SportsCenter Fame
No barrier was too strong to hold the Main Liner back from achieving his broadcast dreams.
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Usha Negandhi’s ambitions for her sons were somewhat stereotypical. She hoped they’d become business owners or maybe lawyers. She signed them up for baseball, basketball, football and any other organized sport, because, as she says, “I wanted to know where they were and what they were doing.”
Now, millions know where her youngest son, Kevin, is every weekday morning: at the anchor desk for ESPN’s SportsCenter, the network’s signature daily sports news program. He sits beside co-anchor Hannah Storm, holding his own with a host of ex-jock analysts.
The Phoenixville native has been in the coveted 9-to-noon weekday slot since stepping up from the weekend broadcast in May 2011, when predecessor Josh Elliott was tapped for Good Morning America. He charges into the day’s sports news with the unbridled passion typical of a Philadelphia sports fan: “Gooood morning. This is SportsCenter.”
It’s a long way from the sandlots and hardwoods of Phoenixville, where his mom would schlep him to older brother Vimal’s youth baseball and basketball games. There, Kevin would get pressed into service as batboy or ball boy. By age 14, he knew where he wanted to be.
“When you think of the great franchise shows in the history of TV, SportsCenter is the upper, upper echelon,” says Storm, who’s also enjoyed stints on CBS, ABC and CNN. “It’s an elite franchise show.”