Jimmy Roberts is a 13-time Emmy Award-winning broadcaster and writer known most recently for his work on NBC and Golf Channel as an essayist, interviewer, feature reporter and studio host. Roberts is a fixture as an essayist and reporter on NBC and Golf Channel’s coverage of the PGA Tour and other high-profile golf events, including the Ryder Cup. In addition, Roberts is a veteran of 17 Olympic Games, including nine with NBC Sports.
“Jimmy Roberts has always been a wonderful storyteller, touching the hearts and challenging the minds of viewers,” says legendary golfer Jack Nicklaus.
“Jimmy is a contemporary version of Jack Whitaker,” says Tommy Roy, NBC Sports golf producer. “He’s a brilliant wordsmith and a skilled interviewer. His pieces really get you to care about the competitors.”
In 2009, Harper Collins published Roberts’ first book, “Breaking the Slump,” which deals with how some of the best golfers to ever play the game, as well as one former president and one Olympic gold medalist, dug themselves out of career-threatening dry spells. The book was critically praised in Newsweek, the New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and Sports Illustrated.
Roberts joined NBC Sports in May 2000 after a long and much-honored career at ABC and ESPN. Starting in 1988, his assignments as a SportsCenter correspondent included the World Series, NBA Finals, heavyweight championship bouts, Super Bowl and the 1992 and 1994 Winter Olympics. He was a regular contributor to, and co-originator of ESPN’s Outside the Lines series, as well. In 1987 and 1988, Roberts served as a writer and producer of features at ABC Sports. Prior to that he was an assignment editor and producer for ABC News (1985-87), where he coordinated and supervised coverage of sports for the division, as well as producing stories for ABC News broadcasts. In 1984, he worked for Howard Cosell on ABC’s SportsBeat, writing and producing features for the Emmy Award-winning show.
From 1975-1977 he served as a staff reporter for the Westchester/Rockland (N.Y.) newspapers.
Over a career that spans more than 30 years in broadcasting and journalism, Roberts has earned numerous distinctions, including a Golf Writers Association of America award, Metropolitan Golf Association’s Distinguished Service Award, and Emmy Awards for writing, best feature, journalism, and individual achievement. Roberts also was cited in the category for a series of reports from the Middle East during Operation Desert Shield in 1991, but he jokes that perhaps his most noteworthy accomplishment while at ESPN was coining the phrase “The Deuce” in reference to ESPN2.
Roberts earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Maryland in 1979. One of Roberts’ Emmy Awards is on display at renowned campus hangout R.J. Bentley’s Filling Station in College Park, where as an undergraduate Roberts was an original employee.
Jimmy lives in the New York area with his wife, Sandra, and their three sons.