If you ask me, John Baer of the Philly Daily News deserves a round of applause.
Baer, in his Baer Growls column in the Daily News — http://bit.ly/WOhryM — comments on the fuss that has come out over remarks from ESPN’s Brent Musburger during Monday night’s football game between Notre Dame and Alabama.
“If you missed it — and don’t see how you could have — ESPN issued an apology for veteran Brent Musburger’s remarks regarding the girlfriend ofAlabama quarterback AJ McCarron. She was sitting in the stands with her boyfriend’s parents. She happens to be the current Miss Alabama.
” ‘What a beautiful woman,” said Brent.
” ‘Wow!” said Kirk.
” ‘You quarterbacks get all the good-looking women,’ said Brent, a reference to the fact Kirk was an Ohio State QB who married an Ohio State cheerleader.
” ‘AJ’s doing some things right down in Tuscaloosa,’ said Kirk.”
When asked by the Associated Press, Webb apparently said, “I didn’t look at it as creepy at all…it was kind of nice.”
So as Baer points out, what was the purpose of an apology? Have we gotten so overly sensitive that you can’t even state the obvious? I watched the game. I quickly figured out that she was McCarron’s girlfriend after ESPN pointed the camera in her direction about 50 times. So after time after time after time of giving her face time on camera, why shouldn’t Brent and his sidekick at least say something?
Did Brent say something disgusting? Was it rude, lewd, vulgar? Nope. All he said was that she was a beautiful woman. And you know what? She is. Totally. And the joke was that Herbstreit was a college quarterback who also married a cheerleader who was understood to also be an attractive woman.
I’m sorry but I am missing the problem here. To begin with the game stunk after about five minutes. And again, with the camera crew more creepy than Brent by panning to her a zillion times, a casual watcher of the game would have wondered why the heck this beautiful young woman was catching the eye of the camera.
Brent, as Baer points out, was simply stating the obvious. And without any creepiness if you ask me. My goodness it amazes me how many times incidents like this have come to light. And networks are always issuing apologies for anchors and reporters and commentators.
Now if Brent had crossed the line and got creepy about it, then fine. But sheesh, he commented that McCarron’s girlfriend – Miss Alabama – is a beautiful woman. Done. End of story. Period.
I suppose that is where we are when it comes to broadcasting, giving opinions, having the conversations you would have if you were sitting in your living room. You’re not allowed.
In the National Football League – the NFL or No Fun League as we call it – players can’t overcelebrate after a touchdown. Now the linebacker can pound his chest, slap helmets and all the other nonsense but a player isn’t allowed to overcelebrate. How can you overcelebrate? To overcelebrate is wrong? Since when?
Isn’t sports and life supposed to include fun? When did we all become so sterile? When did we lose our sense of fun? When did it become a crime to simply say that a woman is beautiful when she is? And wasn’t Brent also sort of poking fun at his broadcast partner a little? Geez, have a little laugh about it and move on.
I am all about respect and not getting creepy and weird but if the person themselves had no issue with what Brent Musburger said then why is ESPN getting all uppity about it? It was a joke in the moment and there was no harm done.
Hey America, why don’t you relax a little. Don’t get so uptight about everyone and everything.
If I was an NFL player, I would spike the ball about a dozen times each time I got into the end zone. Go ahead and fine me. Who cares? I think all pro athletes should go crazy and celebrate. Why not? Have a little fun. Sports is supposed to be our outlet from everyday life.
Too bad everyday life and all its uptight rules and political correctness have creeped into even sports and broadcasts of football games.
Take it down a notch, eh?
– Andy Hachadorian