Couric might not live up to hype

On the 15th anniversary of her job as anchor on NBC’s “Today” show, Katie Couric announced to the world, following weeks of speculation, that she was indeed leaving the show and heading over to CBS, where she would become the first female solo anchor on an evening news broadcast.

According to CNN, The “Today” show has enjoyed a 10-year run at the top of the ratings with Couric and Matt Lauer at the helm. CBS executives are hoping Couric will bring ratings gold to its network, which is currently in third place, and attract younger viewers. But will she really?

The latest Gallup poll shows only 10 percent of Americans say they will now watch the CBS evening news because of Couric, while 10 percent say they won’t watch it with Couric at the helm. Doesn’t seem to help CBS’ cause, does it?

Viewers of the “Today” show like Couric because of her “perky” personality, and like a good cup of coffee, they depend on her to get them out of bed and into work. Will that help her when she moves to the more somber arena of evening news?

Couric has perfected her craft on a morning news show, which is a little more “anything goes.” Viewers loved seeing her different Halloween costumes and trading one-liners with Lauer. Couric was perfect for the “Today” show because she had the combination of witty dialogue and an upbeat personality that made her a favorite in many households.

Couric, in our minds, is more of a celebrity than a journalist. Everyone knows her.

We know Couric is capable of handling “hard” news, but we’re just not sure she can handle it on such a regular basis. On the “Today” show, Couric would frequently do an interview with a high-profile official then after the commercial break she’d be in the test kitchen making a entr‚e with the celebrity chef. According to, Couric even started out in the “hard” news arena as a reporter in Washington D.C., but then moved to the “Today” show anchor position where she began to hone her talents as one of the best morning personalities.

Just because we’re concerned about whether Couric can handle her new position, we certainly aren’t saying that women can’t anchor evening news programs, either solo or with a co-anchor. Barbara Walters, for one, has set the standard for reporting, and we’re just not sure Couric can live up to that.

Soon after Couric made her announcement, NBC announced that Meredith Viera, co-host of “The View,” will replace Couric. Smart move for NBC as they might have found the perfect replacement. We’re sure they won’t miss a beat as Veira seamlessly blends right in with the rest of the “Today” show crew.

With Couric, however, only time will tell if her switch from morning show host to evening news anchor is successful. We wish her well.

The above editorial is the consensus opinion of the Daily Kent Stater editorial board.