Shouty radio man Colin Cowherd, who is not my cup of tea but is loved by many, was already on his way out the door at ESPN as of very recently, having worked out a deal to head to Fox Sports instead. It was part of a massive cost-shedding at ESPN that included the departures of Bill Simmons and Keith Olbermann at a reported savings of $10 million. ESPN has always been a believer that the brand is bigger than any one person, so none of that was terribly surprising.
But if the Simmons (who landed at HBO) breakup with ESPN could be described as messy, the Cowherd breakup with the WWL was better described as amicable. On Wednesday this week, he offered up a nice toast to ESPN on the air, thanking them for the opportunity and commenting on how his bosses trust him enough to keep his show on even though his deal with Fox has been announced.
And then Thursday he talked himself into a black hole with comments on Dominican ballplayers that were at best ignorant and at worst dangerously racist. He tried to clarify on Friday, and the clarification was almost as bad. MLB and the MLBPA denounced his remarks, and rightfully so.
And Cowherd? Gone, too.
John Ourand from Sports Business Journal reports that ESPN was going to let Cowherd do shows next week before having his final day be next Friday; now, because of this, Cowherd is off the air a week early.
It’s a nice little mess for Fox to inherit, though I imagine that Cowherd has more staying power than this story.