Chris Matthews Previews Obama Interview (VIDEO)

Chris Matthews is really, really looking forward to interviewing President Obama.

The MSNBC host could barely contain his excitement on his Tuesday night show. "People always ask me who I'd most like to have on 'Hardball,'" Matthews told viewers. "Well Thursday night, two nights from now, I can't ask for more: the president of the United States is coming to 'Hardball.'"

Matthews' reaction comes as no surprise, given the host's enthusiasm about Obama in the past.

He opened his show Tuesday by announcing the interview, which he later previewed. Matthews will sit down with the president at American University on Thursday as part of the "Hardball College Tour," and their conversation will air at 7 p.m.

The interview will mark Obama's first appearance on MSNBC in many months. In the past, he has largely shunned the network — to the point that MSNBC president Phil Griffin even began touting it as a sign of the network's independence from the Democratic party.