Another week, another Brent Musburger-related mini-fiasco for ESPN's public relations team.
After last week's debacle—in which the BCS National Championship Game commentator came under fire for going on and on for a bit too long about just how beautiful AJ McCarron's girlfriend is—Musburger is in hot water again.
This time, it's because he used the word "smoking"—either in reference to ESPN sideline reporter Holly Rowe, or in reference to the Baylor-Kansas game he had just called.
You can listen for yourself:
Once the Twitterverse began to bury Musburger yet again for what sounded like a public commentary on a woman's looks, ESPN PR representative Josh Krulewitz quickly came to Musburger's defense via Twitter:
Simply stated: "Brent said the word 'it.' We are moving on."— Josh Krulewitz (@jksports) January 15, 2013
Is there a little bit of spin happening here? Possibly. It sure sounds like Musburger is saying "Holly Rowe, who was really smoking tonight," but it is remotely possible he said "it was really smoking tonight," in reference to the game.
In all honesty, the game wasn't much of a thriller—No. 4 Kansas handily defeated unranked Baylor 61-44—but things tend to get rowdy inside Allen Fieldhouse. Maybe Musburger was just excited by the atmosphere.
Last week, in the midst of Alabama's 42-14 defeat of Notre Dame in the national championship, the broadcast panned to Crimson Tide quarterback AJ McCarron's girlfriend, Katherine Webb. Musburger spent considerable time complimenting Webb's looks and urging Alabama boys to get out in the yard and start throwing a football so they could get a girl like that.
In an ensuing appearance on The Today Show, Webb—who was named Miss Alabama in 2012—insisted she had no problem with Musburger's comments and found them flattering.
Webb told Matt Lauer, via the Sporting News:
I think the media has been really unfair to [Brent Musburger]. If he would’ve said something along the line that we were hot or sexy or made any derogatory statements like that, I think that would’ve been a little bit different, but the fact that he said that we were beautiful and gorgeous, I don’t see why any woman wouldn’t be flattered by that.
Points for Webb for taking the high road and playing it cool, but the jury's out on whether Rowe feels the same.