ESPN Premieres BASS Saturday, Featuring BassCenter, on New Year's Day

John Kernan ("RPM2Night") to Anchor and Byron Velvick (ABC's "The Bachelor") to be Analyst on BassCenter

Jay Kumar and Mark Zona to Face-0ff on Loudmouth Bass

Editor's Note: ESPN Outdoors is hosting a media-only teleconference with Christine Godleski (Vice President and General Manager, ESPN Outdoors), Dan Bowen (Coordinating Producer, ESPN Outdoors), John Kernan (Anchor, BassCenter) and Byron Velvick (Analyst, BassCenter) today at 2:00 p.m. ET. To reserve a line, please call BASS Communications at 334-551-2436. The call-in number will be (800) 289-0517.

Bristol, Conn. - Bass anglers everywhere have a chance to start their New Year right by tuning into ESPN2 for BASS Saturday. Beginning on January 1, 2005, BASS Saturday debuts with new programming that should thrill bass fanatics and introduce new participants to the sport.

The centerpiece of BASS Saturday is BassCenter, a weekly news show dedicated to the world of bass fishing. The only derivative of the SportsCenter name ever authorized by ESPN, BassCenter will profile anglers, uncover stories and address issues of interest to bass fishing enthusiasts. The weekly program will cover the news of the sport that week - from tournaments to new technology. The series will feature a wide variety of entertainment and information, including tournament analysis, bass fishing tips, angler profiles and human interest features.

"Quite simply, BassCenter is SportsCenter for bass fishing," said Vice President and General Manager of ESPN Outdoors, Christine Godleski.

The anchor of BassCenter is John Kernan, host of ESPN2's former long-running motor sports news show, "RPM 2Night." Kernan will be joined by BassCenter analyst, Byron Velvick, a professional angler who recently starred on ABC's popular reality show, "The Bachelor," as well as commentators Ken Schultz, the longtime fishing editor of Field & Stream magazine, and Keith Sutton, ESPN.com's award-winning "Out There" columnist. Trey Reid, outdoor writer for the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, provides reports from the field as he covers major events on the BASS and FLW tours.

BassCenter will be telecast every Saturday morning at 7:00 a.m. ET and updated at 11:00 a.m. ET.

Loudmouth Bass

Immediately following BassCenter at 7:30 a.m. ET will be "Loudmouth Bass." It's a weekly program loosely patterned after ESPN's popular "Pardon the Interruption," and each week the hosts will debate industry issues with each other and a guest.

The hosts of "Loudmouth Bass" are two experts who represent the world of bass fishing from very different perspectives. Jay Kumar, the founder of BassFan.com, will provide a journalist's point of view. Mark Zona, an accomplished tournament angler, will give the perspective of a touring pro.

Bassmaster University

For more than 30 years now, Bassmaster University has traveled the country as a seminar series featuring the world's best bass pros. Now ESPN2 brings the pros to your living room for in-depth lessons on bass fishing.

"Bassmaster University: The Ultimate Tips and Techniques Show," debuts on January 1st at 9:30 a.m. ET. No other program has ever had so many experts offering so much bass fishing information.

Kevin VanDam, Davy Hite, George Cochran, Gerald Swindle, Greg Hackney and many more of the best bass fishermen in the world will share their knowledge. Rick Clunn anchors every show with insights into the "big picture" of bass fishing. Jerry McKinnis guides the curriculum, making sure that even the beginning angler can keep up.

And Coming This Summer . BASS Tech

If you love the gear and technology that surrounds modern bass fishing, "BASS Tech" is the show for you.

"BASS Tech" is a warehouse-sized workshop where technology experts carry out a project from start to finish over the course of the episode. Each Saturday, beginning in July, the "Bass Tech" experts will rig a boat, design or modify a lure or show viewers how to improve motor or electronics performance.

Since its inception in 2001, ESPN Outdoors has strived to inform and entertain anglers, hunters, campers and people of all ages who enjoy the outdoors.  ESPN Outdoors is committed to increasing awareness of outdoor activities, a direction best exemplified by daily television programming totaling nearly 1,000 hours annually on ESPN and ESPN2.

Each year, ESPN Outdoors stages more than 30 marquee events including the CITGO Bassmaster Classic and the ESPN Great Outdoor Games. ESPN Outdoors comprises BASS, the worldwide authority on bass fishing that sanctions more than 20,000 events through the BASS Federation. ESPN Outdoors also features Bassmaster.com, ESPNOutdoors.com, a weekly outdoors show on ESPN Radio as well as a growing array of promotions and activities that deliver a clear message of conservation and ethical sportsmanship.

For more information, contact ESPN Outdoors Communications at (334) 551-2375.

January 1 BASS Saturday Schedule (all times are ET):
7:00 a.m. BassCenter
7:30 a.m. Loudmouth Bass
8:00 a.m. Jimmy Houston Outdoors
8:30 a.m. The Fishin' Hole with Jerry McKinnis
9:00 a.m. Schooled by Denny Brauer, presented by Busch Beer
9:30 a.m. Bassmaster University: The Ultimate Tips & Techniques Show
10:00 a.m. The 2004 Bassmaster Classic (Charlotte, NC)
11:00 a.m. BassCenter
ESPN-PR