American television host and sportscaster Charissa Thompson is working for Fox Sports. Prior to that she worked for ESPN, Versus, as well as for GSN and the Big Ten Network. 

She was previously the co-host of SportsNation along with Marcellus Wiley until she departed from ESPN for Fox Sports in June 2013. Interestingly, she left for the same network. 

Charissa Thompson went on to become the host of Fox Sports Live on the new Fox Sports 1 network when it debuted on August 17, 2013 (the first day of Fox Sports 1). From 2014 to 2017, Thompson was a co-host on the syndicated entertainment news show Extra and also served as host to ABC’s new reality-TV diving show, Splash. 

Charissa Thompson: Life Story and Bio

Quick Trivia: 

  • Charissa Thompson resides in Malibu, California.
  • Thompson spoke about her Wikipedia article in 2019, clarifying that she was not a trapeze artist as the article previously mentioned.
  • In Jan 2020, she got engaged to sports agent Kyle Thousand.
  • Prior to her sports broadcasting career, Thompson received an email from Sports Illustrated, offering her to appear in body paint in a Swimsuit Issue.

Early Life and School:

  • Born as Charissa Jean Thompson the anchor was born and raised in Seattle, Washington.
  • The youngest of three children, she knew she wanted to be a broadcaster from an early age.
  • She attended Inglemoor High School in Kenmore, Washington.
  • Thompson moved to California to attend community college to gain a California residency.
  • She later transferred to the University of California, Santa Barbara where she graduated with a B.A. in Law and Society in 2004.
  • While Sports Illustrated wrote “she left Washington State (WSU) to attend community college in California before transferring to UC Santa Barbara,” Thompson has clarified she never attended WSU! 
  • Early in her career, Thompson appeared on various college sports shows on Big Ten Network and Fox Sports Net (FSN). Thompson additionally served as a sideline reporter for college football and college basketball games on the two networks. 

Dating Life:

  • Charissa Thompson had a previous marriage when she was 25.
  • She was also previously in a relationship with ESPN analyst and former Chicago Bulls player Jay Williams.
  • Thompson, who hosts FOX NFL Kickoff, got engaged to sports agent Kyle Thousand.
  • The couple got engaged at the Princeville Resort in Kauai, Hawaii in January 2020 and Thompson and Thousand shared photos on Instagram
  • Thousand, a former baseball player, is now the head of the baseball division at Roc Nation Sports.

Nude Leakes:

In January 2018, nude photos of Thompson were leaked online after her iCloud account was hacked.

Thompson shortly thereafter sought legal action. 

That June, she spoke about the incident to The Athletic, stating “When it comes to your physical being and intimate photos between you and your boyfriend and things that you sent to someone when you were in a long-distance relationship and in love, it is your private property. So it felt — the obvious — like such an invasion.”

Other than Sports:

  • In 2014, she joined Mario Lopez and Tracy Edmonds as a co-host on the syndicated television show Extra.
  • She also appeared as the host of the “Barstool Spelling Bee” in May 2015.
  • In 2016, it was announced that Thompson would be a host on the Netflix reality show Ultimate Beastmaster.
  • Thompson also joined Top Rank’s broadcasting team for the Manny Pacquiao vs. Jessie Vargas boxing Pay-per-View event.

Big Ten Network, Getting Rid of The Blonde Hair, and Fox Sports Net: 

PC: John Salangsang/Invision/AP

For Big Ten Network, Thompson appeared on various Big Ten Network shows, such as Big Ten’s Best and Friday Night Tailgate.

For FSN, she appeared on baseball programs, including The 2007 MLB All-Star Game Red Carpet Parade and The Baseball Report both on Fox Sports Net (FSN).

She also appeared on FSN’s BCS Breakdown and The BCS Show.

Thompson co-hosted FSN’s The Best Damn Sports Show Period alongside Chris Rose and John Salley until 2009, due to the show’s cancellation.

She also hosted FSN’s rodeo show Toughest Cowboy. In 2008, Thompson finished her first run as an NFL sideline reporter. 

During the season, Thompson dyed her hair black to “rid [herself] of the Barbie thing,” as she is notably blond.

Her change of hair color drew attention from some sports blogs; Deadspin ran an article titled: “Charissa Thompson Continues Down Suicidal Path to Frumpyville”. 

Thompson quickly went back to being blonde. In 2016, she recalled the event in an interview with HBO. Despite such incidents, Thompson’s sex appeal has been touched upon by various media outlets since.

Thompson also appeared outside of the Big Ten Network and FSN early in her career. She was on the cover of the April 2009 issue of Access DirecTV(satellite TV provider DirecTV’s monthly TV Guide-like magazine) and interviewed Philadelphia Phillies pitcher Cole Hamels for the feature story. Also in 2009, co-hosted Big Saturday Night on Game Show Network (GSN), and appeared on Shaq Vs. as a sideline reporter. 

Versatility, ESPN years and Reality TV: 

PC: Richard Shotwell | AP

In 2010, Thompson appeared on the NFL Network’s “NFL Now Updates”. She covered the 2010 Vancouver Olympic Winter Games, reporting for Yahoo Sports. She was also recently added as a co-host for the Speed Network’s “Fast Track To Fame” alongside now retired NASCAR driver-owner turned FOX Sports analyst Michael Waltrip. In June and July 2010, Thompson covered the FIFA World Cup in South Africa for Yahoo! Sports. 

In February 2011, Charissa covered the Super Bowl in Dallas and the NBA All-Star Game for Yahoo! Sports.

In January 2011, she covered the NHL All-Star Game for Versus. In February 2011, Versus was forced to kick her and Lindsay Soto out from their ice-level reporting staff after the NBC-Comcast merger; they were replaced instead by Pierre McGuire and Brian Engblom, forming the now “Inside the Glass” team.

In June 2011, Thompson started her career at ESPN.  

Charissa has also filled in as a host on SportsNation and ESPN First Take. In July 2012, she was the full time fill in for Michelle Beadle as host of SportsNation after Beadle left for NBC. She exited ESPN in June 2013 to return to Fox Sports.

In 2013, Thompson joined actor Joey Lawrence as a co-host of the ABC’s reality TV series Splash, where star contestants dive from Olympic-style platforms and are scored on their performance judged by Olympic divers, David Boudia and Steve Foley in addition to votes from the TV audience.

Rejoining Fox Sports for FS1 launch:

Thompson rejoined Fox Sports in 2013 for the launch of Fox Sports 1 (FS1); she began on FS1 as a host on Fox Sports Live. 

She also became a presenter for Fox NFL Kickoff.  In 2018, she replaced Katie Nolan as the host of NFL Films Presents on FS1.


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