Pete Thamel is expected to leave Sports Illustrated for Yahoo Sports, two sources tell The Big Lead. Unauthorized to speak publicly on the matter, the sources requested anonymity. One source said that while the deal is not yet finalized, indications are that it’s headed in that direction very soon.
Thamel, who specializes in college football reporting, joined SI from the New York Times in 2012. Thamel did not return text messages or a phone call seeking comment.
Yahoo Sports and SI remain quite large properties in sports media, but they are both in states of flux.
The transition in Yahoo’s acquisition by Verizon/AOL is ongoing, and the sports section is being helmed by longtime digital media executive Geoff Reiss, who joined the company in March. At the beginning of this month, NBA reporting titan Adrian Wojnarowski departed for ESPN. Layoffs at the site included bloggers Kelly Dwyer, Eric Freeman and Sean Leahy, as well as top editors Bob Condor, Joe Lago and Melissa Geisler.
There have also been a number of layoffs at SI as of late, including the writers Greg Bedard and Seth Davis. Earlier this week, it was reported that the magazine is mulling the decision to drop from the current 38 issues to 24 in 2018. SI’s parent company, Time Inc., turned down an acquisition from the magazine publisher Meredith at $18 a share. National Enquirer CEO David Pecker is said to be considering making a run at buying the company.