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John Clayton goes viral

Charley Steiner was on a conference call Thursday morning to promote ESPN's upcoming 50,000th episode of "SportsCenter" when he got to reminiscing about his roles in two of the show's most famous commercials:

One that ended with him uttering the infamous line, "Follow me to freedom!" and another in which he was traded from SportsCenter to "Melrose Place" in exchange for the actor Andrew Shue.

Of the latter, he said, "It was the only time I wore a tank top. Anybody who might remember the spot knows why."

Little did any of us know at the time that hours later a new ad, set to make its TV debut on the season premiere of "Monday Night Football,'' would go viral on the Internet, taking its place as a classic of the genre before it ever has been seen on television.

The star? Like Steiner, an ESPN personality who, well, let's just say he doesn't have classic television personality looks.

Said John Clayton of his breakout performance:  "This spot gives viewers a chance to peek behind the curtain. I’m glad we’re finally able to end the speculation and focus on what looks to be a fantastic NFL season.”

New York Sports