Desmond enters his 12th year as a college football analyst having covered the Rose Bowl, Fiesta Bowl, Sugar Bowl, and National Championship games. He joined ESPN in 2005 as a member of the popular College GameDay crew, and continues to work alongside Chris Fowler, Kirk Herbstreit and Coach Corso each Saturday during college football season. The 1991 Heisman Trophy winner and Super Bowl XXXI MVP joined the network a few years after his remarkable professional football career.
Desmond’s television broadcast experience began as a contributor to Fox Sports’ Best Damn Sports Show Period in 2003 and continued as a correspondent on ESPN 2’s Cold Pizza in 2004 during the show’s Super Bowl coverage. Howard was also a weekly contributor to Fox Sports Radio during the 2005-2006 NFL season. His in-game, color commentary experience began in 2008 as an analyst for the Detroit Lions during NFL preseason football and he's also been seen occasionally in this role for mid-week college football games on ESPN. Desmond is heard weekly on WQAM 560AM in Miami, analyzing the most intriguing college football match-ups. His television honors include four Sports Emmys as a College GameDay cast member.
While playing for the University of Michigan from 1988-1991, Howard was the first receiver in Big Ten history to lead the conference in scoring as he set or tied five NCAA records and 12 single-season Michigan records. In 1991, the All-American won the Heisman by the second largest margin of victory in the trophy’s history (85 percent of the vote). He was also awarded the Walter Camp Trophy and the Maxwell Award that year, finishing with 950 receiving yards and 19 touchdown receptions. His 138 points (23 touchdowns overall) that season made him the first wide receiver to lead the Big Ten in scoring. By the end of his college career, Howard had scored 37 touchdowns.
The Washington Redskins selected Howard fourth overall in the 1992 NFL Draft. Howard spent three seasons with Washington, then moved on to the Jacksonville Jaguars – with whom he scored the first game-winning touchdown in team history – the Green Bay Packers, Oakland Raiders and Detroit Lions. He was selected to the Pro Bowl in 2000 while playing with the Lions.
Howard had 92 receptions as a wide receiver in his first four years. His 870 punt return yards in a single season and 99-yard kickoff return in the 1997 Super Bowl remain NFL records. With the memorable postseason kickoff return, he became the first and only player on special teams to be named Super Bowl MVP. Also in 1996, Howard led the NFL in punt returns, punt return average and punt returns for touchdowns, and he tacked on 460 kickoff return yards and 95 receiving yards on 13 catches.
In May 2010, it was announced that Desmond would be enshrined in the College Football Hall of Fame. Howard has also been inducted into the Gator Bowl Hall of Fame, the University of Michigan Hall Of Honor, State of Michigan Sports Hall of Fame and the Greater Cleveland Sports Hall of Fame. His television honors include being a part of a Sports Emmy Award-winning season of College GameDay in 2007 and 2009.
Howard, who graduated from the University of Michigan in 1992 with a bachelor’s degree in Mass Communications, now resides in Miami.