Sage Steele
Steele at the 10th Annual CoachArt Gala Fundraiser on October 16, 2014
Sage Marie Steele

(1972-11-28) November 28, 1972 (age 48)
EducationCarmel High School Carmel, IN
Indiana University
Notable credit(s)
ESPN SportsCenter
TitleHost, reporter

Sage Marie Steele (born November 28, 1972) is an American television anchor who is the co-host of the 12pm (ET) SportsCenter on ESPN. She also hosts SportsCenter on the Road from various sporting events such as the Super Bowl and The Masters. Steele formerly hosted NBA Countdown on ESPN and ABC for four seasons, ending in 2017. For five years prior to the NBA assignment, Steele was a full-time host of SportsCenter, ESPN's flagship show, and had previously contributed to ESPN First Take, Mike & Mike in the Morning, and SportsNation. Steele hosted SportsCenter's daytime coverage of the NBA Finals in 2012 and 2013, and has covered every NBA Finals from 2012 to 2020.

Early life

Sage Steele was born in 1972, of African-American and Irish/Italian descent into an American Army family living in the Panama Canal Zone.[1] The U.S. Army stationed Steele's family in several different states and countries, including Greece and Belgium, before moving back stateside to Colorado Springs, Colorado, in 1984 for her seventh grade year. After attending Thomas B. Doherty High School in Colorado Springs for two years, she moved to Carmel, Indiana, and attended Carmel High School as a senior, graduating in 1990.[2][3][4]

She graduated from Indiana University Bloomington in 1995 with a Bachelor of Science degree in sports communication. Exactly 20 years later, she was the commencement speaker at the 2015 Indiana University undergraduate commencement, which she considers the greatest honor of her career.[5][6]

Broadcasting career

Steele's first television sports reporting job was at WSBT-TV, the CBS affiliate in South Bend, Indiana, as a news producer and reporter from 1995 to 1997.

Steele then worked at CBS affiliate WISH-TV in Indianapolis, Indiana, from 1997 to 1998 as the weekend morning sports anchor and weekday reporter. Her reporting duties included the Indianapolis Colts, Indiana Pacers, Indianapolis 500 and Brickyard 400 auto races, and local college and high school sports.

Steele worked at ABC affiliate WFTS in Tampa, Florida, from 1998 to 2001, where she was a sports reporter with former WFTS sports director and former SportsCenter host Jay Crawford and current "NFL RedZone" host Scott Hanson. She also worked at Fox Sports Florida as a reporter, continuing to cover teams throughout Central Florida such as the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Orlando Magic, Tampa Bay Lightning and University of South Florida Bulls.

She then worked at Comcast SportsNet Mid-Atlantic in Bethesda, Maryland, where she was an anchor and reporter for the network's nightly local sports news program, SportsNite, covering all sports in the Washington, DC/Baltimore region. Steele was one of Comcast SportsNet's original personalities, joining that network when it launched in 2001. During her six years at CSN Mid-Atlantic (2001–2007), she was a main anchor and also the beat reporter for the Baltimore Ravens.

Steele then joined ESPN and debuted on March 16, 2007, on the 6:00 p.m. ET edition of SportsCenter. In an interview with Awful Announcing, she mentioned that she was actually offered a job with the network in 2004, but turned it down while pregnant with her second child.[7]

On July 28, 2013, she drove the pace car for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Brickyard 400. During the pace laps at the beginning of the race, she was bumped in jest by 6-time Sprint Cup champion Jimmie Johnson.

Beginning in the 2013–14 NBA season, Steele became the host of NBA Countdown on ESPN and ABC through 2017. [8]

Steele co-hosted the Miss America 2017 & 2018 pageant on ABC with Chris Harrison.[9]

Personal life

Steele is the daughter of Gary & Mona (O'Neil) Steele. Mona is of Irish and Italian descent, Gary is African-American, and was the first to play varsity football at West Point during the mid-1960s.[10] Steele was inducted into the Army Sports Hall of Fame in 2013 for his standout career on the Black Knights football and track & field teams. Steele has two brothers, Courtney and Chad, who is the senior vice president of media relations for the NFL's Baltimore Ravens.[11][12] Steele married Jonathan Bailey on October 30, 1999, and divorced in 2019. The couple has three children.


  1. ^ Wollschlager, Mike. "ESPN's Sage Steele Renovates an Avon Colonial into a Dream Home". Connecticut Magazine. Retrieved 2021-06-02.
  2. ^ Briggeman, Brent (June 4, 2015). "Sage Steele's time in Colorado Springs helped steer her life toward ESPN". Colorado Springs Gazette. Archived from the original on June 15, 2015. Retrieved June 14, 2015.
  3. ^ Agness, Scott (February 11, 2011). "ESPN's Sage Steele shares stories and advice with avid IU students". Vigilant Sports. Archived from the original on December 24, 2015. Retrieved June 14, 2015.
  4. ^ Jaffe, Harry (September 2002). "She knows the score". Washingtonian. Archived from the original on May 6, 2015. Retrieved June 14, 2015.
  5. ^ Morris, Lena (March 25, 2014). "Steele recounts obstacles in path of becoming host of ESPN's top shows". Indiana University Journalism. Archived from the original on March 24, 2015. Retrieved June 14, 2015.
  6. ^ "Alumna Sage Steele to speak at Indiana University Bloomington undergraduate commencement". Indiana University Bloomington. April 8, 2015. Archived from the original on June 11, 2015. Retrieved June 14, 2015.
  7. ^ Maggs, Joe (October 27, 2015). "After a Lengthy Journey, ESPN NBA Countdown Has Finally Found Its Identity in Sage Steele". Awful Announcing. Archived from the original on October 28, 2015. Retrieved October 27, 2015.
  8. ^ "ESPN Gives Up on No-Host Format; Steele to Anchor NBA Countdown — Sports Media Watch". Archived from the original on 2013-10-29. Retrieved 2013-10-26.
  9. ^ "Chris Harrison Will Return for His Eighth Year to Host Miss America 2017". 11 July 2016. Archived from the original on 14 July 2016. Retrieved 18 July 2016.
  10. ^ Nerves of Steele Archived 2007-07-02 at the Wayback Machine St. Petersburg Times, June 9, 2000
  11. ^ People - Front Office Archived 2009-08-21 at the Wayback Machine Baltimore Ravens
  12. ^ Murphy, Jen (2 June 2014). "Sage Steele of 'NBA Countdown' Pumps Iron in a Group". Archived from the original on 13 February 2017. Retrieved 11 March 2017 – via