In Beijing, Eyestone will cover the 5 and 10 K events, the 20 K walk and the marathons for NBC.
For the first time since 1992, BYU men's cross country coach Ed Eyestone is headed back to the Olympic Games, this time as a color commentator for NBC.
The 47-year-old Eyestone will be providing the color commentary for the men's and women's five and 10 thousand meter races, the 20 K walk for the men's and women's races and the 50 K walk for the men, in addition to covering the marathon.
"It a thrill and an honor," Eyestone said. "It's a privilege to be involved with the games in any way, and I'm certainly going to relish this opportunity. Chances like this don't come along everyday. I've been involved with the Olympics before, and I know how special it is."
Eyestone is a two-time Olympian, having competed in the marathon in 1988 in Seoul, South Korea and again in 1992 at the Barcelona Olympic Games in Spain where he had previously served a mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Madrid. Eyestone nearly qualified for a third Olympics in 1996 before suffering a severe bout of heat exhaustion, and he ran an Olympic qualifying time in 2000, but a hamstring injury kept him from competing at the trials a fourth time.
Following a brief stint as an assistant coach at Weber State University in Ogden, Eyestone became the head coach at BYU in 2000, where he was a four-time NCAA national champion and a 10-time All-American selection as a collegian. He quickly re-established the Cougars as one of the premier cross country programs in the nation, with the Cougars qualifying for nationals and finishing in the top 25 every year under Eyestones watch. Additionally, the Cougars have won the Mountain West Conference seven times in eight years since Eyestone became coach.
A five-time U.S. road racer of the year, Eyestone has been handling road-race commentary for a variety of events all over the country in his spare time, including covering many events for Elite Racing. He has also spent nearly nine years covering ESPN's race of the month. His TV work caught someone's eye at the network level and last fall he was invited to cover the men's Olympic Marathon Trials in New York. The following day he covered the New York City Marathon.
"Something I was doing must have caught somebody's attention," said Eyestone, who has been doing color analyst work for the past 15 years, mostly with marathons. "Covering the Olympics is about as good as it gets. It really doesn't get a much bigger than the Olympic stage."
Eyestone is the coach of past BYU runner and current Olympian Josh McAdams who will represent the United States in the 3,000 meter men's steeplechase in Beijing, one of the few distance races that Eyestone may not be covering.
"You know, it would be great to cover that, but first of all, the day of the steeplechase preliminaries is the same day as the women's marathon. Secondly, since I'm not covering it I'll have a better opportunity to really watch and cheer for Josh."
Traveling with Eyestone will be his wife Lynn. The couple currently lives in Provo and has six daughters.
Both the women's and men's marathons will be telecast by NBC in prime time, a day earlier in the United States.
Click here for NBC's Olympic website.
Eyestone Will Cover These Events (Beijing Time)
Aug. 15--20:25 Women's Steeplechase Heats
Aug. 15--22:45 Women's 10,000 Meter Finals
Aug. 16--9:00 Men's 20 K Walk Finals
Aug. 16--9:20 Men's Steeplechase Heats
Aug. 17--7:30 Women's Marathon Finals
Aug. 17--21:30 Women's Steeplechase Finals
Aug. 17--22:45 Men's 10,000 Meter Finals
Aug. 18--21:10 Men's Steeplechase Finals
Aug. 19--19:35 Women's 5,000 Meter Finals
Aug. 20--20:15 Men's 5,000 Heats
Aug. 21--9:00 Women's 20 K Walk Finals
Aug. 22--7:30 Men's 50 K Walk Finals
Aug. 22--10:40 Women's 5,000 Finals
Aug. 23--20:10 Men's 5,000 Finals
Aug. 24--7:30 Men's Marathon Finals