Kirk Herbstreit is a key piece of ESPN’s college football coverage. That made is absence from the 2022 NFL Draft a bit surprising after Herbstreit covered the majority of the 2021 college season.

However, in a conversation with J. Brady McCollough of the LA Times, Herbstreit revealed his absence from the draft coverage was related to a serious health scare. Herbstreit indicated he went through a battle with blood clots in the offseason with clots passing through his heart and settling in his lungs:

“Your heart arteries are crystal clear, look great,” Herbstreit recalls the doctor saying. “But, you’re not going to believe this: You have clots in your lungs.”

Herbstreit went back home to Cincinnati and had a scan of his right calf. More clots.

“Somehow they got into my bloodstream, went through my heart and into my lungs,” Herbstreit says. “Once it got into the lungs, it’s like a dead end. They’re in your lungs, but they go through your heart. That’s where people die. … And so I was just like, ‘Damn.’ ”

That is definitely a frightening experience for the longtime analyst and commentator.

Fortunately, Herbstreit went on to say he has a clean bill of health entering the 2022 season. It will also be a busy fall for Herbstreit as he prepares to add Thursday night NFL broadcasts on Amazon to his busy schedule.

Herbstreit will continue to be a key piece on Saturday morning’s College GameDay and a piece of the primetime broadcast booth on ABC.