Jalen Rose: Here's 10 Ways To Get Yourself Fired or Suspended in Sports
There are plenty of ways to get yourself fired at work.
For example, being terrible at your job, sleeping with an intern, making racist remarks, taking pictures of your unmentionables for all to see, spiking the punchbowl...the list goes on and on.
All employers ask is that their workers respect the company name and act like honest, hard-working human beings. Seems fair enough if you ask me.
The following people missed the memo.
Here are 10 naughty sports analysts who found themselves in hot water after saying or doing something they shouldn't have.
1. Jalen Rose Gets a DUI, Keeps It Secret
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What happened: Jalen Rose "done got drunk," which isn't so bad in itself, except that he got behind the wheel and was subsequently pulled over for being intoxicated.
What's worse, he had recently found himself in the news after he made an "Uncle Tom" comment about African-American players for Duke, which kind of angered some people...especially my uncle Tom, who doesn't care for the term one bit.
This double-whammy got him "pulled off the air" from his gig as an NBA analyst for ESPN.
Result: It was looking like he'd be fired, but ESPN hasn't made that official yet.
The Lesson?: If you get a DUI, be sure to let your employer know. It also helps to not get a DUI. You have to nip these things in the bud, you know?
2. Tony Kornheiser Talks Sausages
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What happened: Tony Kornheiser's a funny guy; at least, I think so. Personally, I didn't find his comments to be all that bad, though ESPN felt it was enough to sideline him for a while.
On his radio show on ESPN 980, Kornheiser said—and I'm only including the best part—that Hannah "looks like she has sausage casing wrapping under her upper body," and "She's what I would call a Holden Caulfield fantasy at this point."
For those of you who don't know, Holden Caulfield is the 17-year-old protagonist from the wildly overrated book The Catcher in the Rye. And also for those of you who don't know, Hannah Storm often dresses like she's 17.
Seems fairly accurate to me. Good thing I don't work at ESPN.
Result: Suspended for two weeks.
The Lesson?: Don't openly criticize your co-workers. That kind of thing is left for the bar after you've had a couple drinks and hope that no one will remember it anyway.
Wait a second...Sean Salisbury!
3. Sean Salisbury Takes Pictures of...Himself
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What happened: Part of what I like to do here is give some life lessons, so take a seat around the ol' campfire, because it's time for another...
Don't take pictures of your genitals and show it to co-workers.
There, now you know. I can see how you'd be confused, as most wouldn't consider this to be common sense, but whether you realize this or not I've just saved you a lot of grief.
Former ESPN NFL analyst Sean Salisbury never had this talk, and he paid for it dearly. At a bar one night Sean decided to show his co-workers a few pictures of his special place. He would later admit it and was subsequently fired.
I never really cared for the guy, anyway.
The Lesson: I told you already! Dang.
4. Imus in the Morning...Said Something Stupid. Plus, It Was Racist
What Happened: Don Imus, otherwise known in my world as "Lucifer" (you know you see it too), said on his radio show that the Rutgers women's basketball team looked like a bunch of "nappy-headed hos."
Not exactly a ringing endorsement.
Needless to say, people weren't pleased. Most of all CBS, who pulled the plug on his radio show. Saying racially insensitive things might do that.
Result: Banishment! Or fired, as most people say.
The Lesson: What would possess him to say this, I'll never know. What did he possibly have to accomplish? Don't ever say "nappy-headed hos" in your life and you should be fine.
5. Limbaugh Being Limbaugh
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What happened: Call me crazy, but it seems that hiring a controversial figure to talk about a trivial matter such as sports (yes, I know it feels like the end of the world when your team loses, but there are more important real-world issues to consider, such as "Is the chupacabra real?") can only result in something controversial.
Limbaugh said that, "The media has been very desirous that a black quarterback do well," on Sunday NFL Countdown in 2003. I won't get into whether he was right or wrong in what he said, but I will say that steering the conversation towards race will almost always land you in hot water.
Believe me, "because I'm Mexican" only worked for so long before my mom dropped me off in the middle of nowhere one fateful day. It's OK, though, the wolves raised me just fine.
Incidentally, I'm featured in National Geographic: Feral Children.
Result: Fired! Ahem...I mean, he resigned.
The Lesson: Rush Limbaugh sucks...and so does McNabb. Just kidding. He's cool (McNabb, that is), but I liked him better when him and Kobe shared the same haircut.
You know what I mean. Hint: It's my theory they were more aerodynamic and thus better.
6. Jay Mariotti Practices His Swing
What happened: Look, I don't care for Mariotti. Watching him on Around the Horn made me want to punch things, mostly my TV because his face was on it.
You know how many TVs I went through!? Damn near went bankrupt that year.
Apparently he liked to punch things too (allegedly). Mariotti was arrested in August 2010 for his part in a domestic altercation with his girlfriend. And he never bothered any of us ever again.
The Result: He isn't featured on Around the Horn anymore—thank God.
The Lesson: Don't allegedly beat your girlfriend, I guess. Seems a no-brainer, but some people have trouble seeing that.
7. Steve Phillips Gets Down
What happened: Time to sit back 'round the ol' campfire, because it's time for another life lesson. It's important you pay close attention to this one.
Don't sleep with co-workers.
I know, I know. Jenna in accounting is super hot, and lately she's being giving you the googly eyes. It's tempting, certainly, but don't do it. Nothing good can come from it. Unless you end up getting married or something. Damn loopholes.
Phillips was fired from ESPN after admitting to sleeping with a 22-year-old production assistant, Brooke Hundley. Things became worse when Hundley reportedly showed up on Phillips' driveway, much to the surprise of his wife.
That's never good. I'm betting she wasn't there selling cookies.
The Lesson: In addition to not cheating on your wife, do your best to keep your address a secret...especially if you're cheating on your wife.
8. Emmit Smith Should Stick to Running
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What happened: Some people are better at their job than others, while some people just shouldn't be doing that job in the first place.
When it comes to sports commentating, Smith is the latter.
Smith was fired from ESPN Sunday Night NFL Countdown for reportedly sucking at his job. Obviously, they didn't put it that way, but considering he didn't do anything illegal or controversial, what's left?
I'm a Cowboys fan, so I love the guy, but speaking wasn't his strongest attribute. He was an extraordinary athlete and certainly deserves to be the all-time leading rusher, though that doesn't mean I ever need to hear him speak.
The Lesson: Stick to what you're best at. In Smith's case, it's football, or those Just for Men commercials he does where his "beard is weird."
9. Kelly Tilghman on Tiger Woods...
Michael Cohen/Getty Images
What happened: Here we go again. You sitting 'round the fire? Good.
Don't ever, under any circumstance, use the word "lynch" when speaking about African-Americans. I can't believe I have to say this.
Tilghman said that young players who challenge Tiger Woods should "lynch him in a back alley." Honestly, I don't believe she had any ill intent. However, sometimes you just need to use your head. I mean, "lynch him in a back alley" seems a bit harsh under any context.
Especially in sports.
Result: Suspended for two weeks. Became "that girl" in the neighborhood.
The Lesson: Think before you speak. This lesson is especially important with your significant other.
10. Jeremy Green Has a Few Extracurricular Activities
What happened: I love a good mugshot. Former ESPN analyst Jeremy Green was arrested at a Holiday Inn Express in July 2010 while under the possession of narcotics, drug paraphernalia and child pornography.
ESPN didn't care for this.
Fun Trivia: I once worked as a housekeeper at a Holiday Inn Express for a summer in college. No, it wasn't the one where they got Jeremy Green.
Result: Fired! Among other things.
The Lesson: I don't want to touch this one with a 10-foot stick, but an 11-foot? No, still not long enough.
Honorable Mention: George Costanza
What happened: I know, he's not really a sports figure, but he worked for the Yankees, and last time I checked they're a pretty big deal.
After receiving an offer to work for the Mets, George had to find a way to get fired from the Yankees without raising suspicion, since teams can't recruit you while you're under contract.
He tried smearing strawberries on Babe Ruth's Jersey, running onto the field in a body suit and strapping the World Series trophy to the back of his car.
None worked, as things tend not to when it comes to George.
Result: Nothing. It wasn't real life?
The Lesson: If you're going to do something crazy, be sure that your life is actually part of a sitcom, or you're probably in trouble.