The eye infection that has made NBC's Bob Costas look something like a grown-up Harry Potter on the Olympics broadcasts is getting worse. Tonight he will yield to Matt Lauer of NBC's "Today" during the network's primetime coverage.
"As a practical matter, I simply couldn’t do my job because my eyes had become so blurry, watery and sensitive to light,” Costas said in a statement. “I’m hopeful the symptoms will improve in the next couple of days and I can return to the broadcast. Also, the last thing I want is to go through the rest of my life owing Matt Lauer a bunch of favors.”
“It was becoming increasingly noticeable and uncomfortable, but if it was just that, I would have continued. We in broadcasting are lucky to have the jobs we do, and at one time or another, we’ve all gone on the air feeling less than our best.
According to NBC, tonight will be the first time since CBS aired the Nagano Olympic Winter Games in 1998 that someone other than Costas will host the primetime show. It’s also the first time since 1988 that someone other than Costas will host the Olympic primetime show on NBC.