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ESPN’s Colin Cowherd Would Rather Quit Than Commentate eSports; The Feeling Is Mutual

Nerds and jocks can finally agree.


We’ve previously reported on those in the broadcast sports field being willfully oblivious to the fact that eSports is a huge industry, and rest assured, it’s still happening. ESPN Radio show host Colin Cowherd reacted to seeing the Heroes of the Storm “Heroes of the Dorm” tournament on ESPN2 by promising—I mean, er, threatening. Yeah—to quit if he were ever forced to provide coverage for eSports… aside from angry rants, I guess.

SportsGrid reports that Cowherd launched into a rant about it on his show The Herd With Colin Cowherd:

Here’s what’s going to get me off the air: If I am ever forced to cover guys playing video games, I will retire and move to a rural fishing village and sell bait. You want me out? Demand video game tournaments on ESPN, because that’s what appeared on ESPN2 yesterday.

You can watch the entire, hilariously out-of-touch rant—with bonus mentions of Donkey Kong, mocking of “nerds” for the simple act of enjoying a game, and comparing it to putting a gun in his mouth—over on SportsGrid, and here’s the thing: no one wants traditional sports personalities to cover or commentate eSports. eSports have their own, mostly internet-centric communities, public figures, and commentators that don’t need to be on ESPN to survive—or flourish.

Despite what Cowherd may think when looking at people playing a video game, eSports often have insanely complex mental aspects to the game that can be impossible to understand for a bystander without a well-versed commentator to explain the thought process behind the action on screen. There’s plenty of room on the approximately 8 million ESPN channels to air some video games, and they want to be reported on by physical sports-only personalities about as much as those personalities would want to do that reporting: not at all.

(via Eric at SportsGrid, image via Heroes of the Dorm)

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Dan Van Winkle (he) is an editor and manager who has been working in digital media since 2013, first at now-defunct Geekosystem (RIP), and then at The Mary Sue starting in 2014, specializing in gaming, science, and technology. Outside of his professional experience, he has been active in video game modding and development as a hobby for many years. He lives in North Carolina with Lisa Brown (his wife) and Liz Lemon (their dog), both of whom are the best, and you will regret challenging him at Smash Bros.