Vanderbilt Broadcaster Joe Fisher Resigns, Enters Rehab After Show Appearance

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured ColumnistDecember 4, 2020

A member of the chain gang holds a marker with the SEC logo in the second half of an NCAA college football game between Vanderbilt and LSU Saturday, Oct. 3, 2020, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)
Mark Humphrey/Associated Press

Vanderbilt football play-by-play broadcaster Joe Fisher announced his resignation from the position on Twitter Thursday after he appeared to be intoxicated during Monday night's coaches show. 

Joe Fisher @joefishervu

I have had the honor of being the Voice of the Commodores for 23 years. Recently I went on the air representing Vanderbilt at a time when I should not have. I was unacceptable to me and to the university. I write this to tell you two things.

Joe Fisher @joefishervu

First, as of this morning I am checking myself into a rehab facility to address an issue I've struggled with for a long time. As a result I will be off the grid and out of pocket for a while. Second, I have resigned my position at Vanderbilt effective immediately.

Joe Fisher @joefishervu

I had hoped for a different resolution but that was not to be. I have wonderful memories and experiences with great coaches, players, staff, broadcasters and fans. I will cherish them always. God bless, I love you, and anchor down. Joe

Per Adam Sparks of the Nashville Tennessean, "Fisher's speech was slurred and scattered, and he repeated versions of the same question to interim football coach Todd Fitch on ESPN 102.5 The Game. The weekly hour-long show was pulled off the air after about 40 minutes."

The show was the first after former head coach Derek Mason was fired Sunday amid Vanderbilt's 0-8 start. 

Per Sparks, Fisher—who also did play-by-play for men's basketball and had been broadcasting Vanderbilt football for 23 years—will be replaced on the football broadcasts this season by Nashville radio broadcaster Willy Daunic. No announcements have been made regarding the basketball broadcasts.

Vanderbilt athletics director Candice Lee released the following statement regarding Fisher on Thursday:

Candice Storey Lee @VandyAD

We appreciate your service @joefishervu and will never forget the great moments and memories shared with Commodore Nation. We now applaud your courage. Focus on what matters most & take great care of yourself on this journey. We wish you all the best.

Vanderbilt's football game vs. Georgia, scheduled for Saturday, has been postponed until Dec. 19 due to the Commodores' "football squad size and position availability falling below roster minimum requirements" amid the COVID-19 pandemic and injuries on the team.


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