Erin Andrews Talks Replacing Pam Oliver at Fox Sports, Hosting Dancing With the Stars: "This Is Not Going to Be Easy For Me"
Call it Erin Andrews' field of dreams. The NFL sideline reporter, who was revealed Monday, July 14, as Pam Oliver's successor in the top spot at Fox Sports, opened up to ABC News about her plum new gig and addressed whether she'll be able to host Dancing With the Stars next season.
Calling her new job "a dream come true," Andrews, 36, added: "It's what I think I've wanted, it's pretty much what every sports fan that loves the NFL would love to do at some point. To work with those guys and to be with that crew, it is a dream come true. It's exactly what I've wanted."
The striking blonde was lured from ESPN by Fox in 2012, and will take Oliver's place alongside the legendary Joe Buck and former football icon Troy Aikman.
Andrews said she's well aware of the "huge, huge shoes" she has to fill.
"There's nobody I've watched more over these past 15, 20 years than Pam Oliver," the DWTS co-host told ABC, "and what she did and the precedent she set. How she worked tirelessly day in and day out and really set the standard for women and sideline reporters and so much more than that. I can't thank her enough for being a wonderful role model. This is not going to be easy for me."
Oliver directly confirmed the transition to Sports Illustrated on Sunday, July 13, admitting that the move was "a little shocking." The longtime sportscaster, approaching her 20th year at Fox, admitted she wanted to remain on the network's top team, but her desire was vetoed by executives.
"I live in the real world and I know that television tends to get younger where women are concerned," Oliver, 53, said. "Just turn on your TV. It's everywhere. And I'm not saying these younger girls don’t deserve a chance. I know I've had my turn."
While Fox's decision has angered some fans, Oliver still expressed her support for Andrews, calling the University of Florida alum, "solid."
For Andrews, the latest development in her career accompanies a string of amazing victories in the last year. "I handed out the world series trophy to Boston Red Sox, a team my dad grew up loving," she recalled. "A playoff game in minus 30 degree in Lambeau Field, I was at the Super Bowl, it's just been a dream come true. Just a month ago, I watched my boyfriend [L.A. Kings center Jarret Stoll] play for the Stanley Cup, it's kind of been an absolute whirlwind."
While her schedule just got significantly more packed as a member of the A-team, Andrews said she still plans to host DWTS. "I am going to have time for Dancing with the Stars," she said. "That was all part of our negotiations with them. In February when they came to us, I kind of hinted when I took the job, I was going to be on the Michael Strahan program, now more so than ever."
Andrews added of the Live! With Kelly and Michael co-host: "He works crazy hours on Sunday, I'll be doing the same thing. I'm literally going to be going from the football field to the ballroom just like 'Sta,' he goes from the studio in New York to his show with Kelly Ripa."