Nate Silver, one of the most prominent U.S. stats guys, is moving on from the New York Times. Some intensely good U.S. election projections brought him and his FiveThirtyEight site to the top of political prognosticators in the last few elections, so much so the Times brought him and his site on board in 2010.
Now, he’s signed on with ESPN, who didn’t just license his site but bought it with the explicit hopes of turning it into something similar to what they’ve done with Bill Simmons and Grantland.
Josh Levin at Slate already has a list of things in sports he wants Silver to fix, and the New Republic‘s Marc Tracy has a pair of posts up already, one pulling from a conference call with Silver and ESPN’s president and the other examining his relationship with the Times.
We’ll have to see how the site turns out, how much he’s covering sports, politics and everything else he’s promising to write about with his staff of dozens. It’ll also be interesting to see what he’s doing with the resources they’re giving him. I never thought of Silver as someone who could be the strong editorial voice to lead an internet magazine along the lines of a Grantland, but there are certainly worse people out there for a job like that.