Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Is Erin Andrews Distracting You From Your Sports News?

Picture courtesy of redsoxtimes.com
Over the past couple years, the name Erin Andrews has invoked controversy. From college world series players being enamored by her beauty to columnist Mike Nadel calling her out for being too friendly, her name to some is less then respectable. Is this an unfair assessment or the nail hammered on her head? I contend any this type of criticism of her and her looks are nothing more then mere jealousy or the old boy's network trying to maintain it's "integrity". Anyone who wants to evaluate solely based on her actual work I will actually concede though I disagree.

How sad is it that a personable, attractive woman is penalized for such attributes? I have no problem whatsoever with her using any advantages to be successful at her career as long as she does a good job at it. How many journalists in the past have used personal connections to get a story? I am unsure of the exact number but I am willing to wager it happens regularly (and if I had connections, I would use them too, its called networking). They are using resources available to them just as Erin is doing when she is being personable with players. I promise you that the majority of those who complain would use anything within their means and within legal and moral guidelines to get their own sources for stories. Those who label Erin's actions immoral should stick to their church bulletins and covering their church softball league (though those people can get awfully dirty too). Everyone has differing definitions of what fits their morals and I know my conscience is just fine with being personable or if you prefer to label it as such, flirtatious. And don't think for one second that if some male journalist had ripped abs and muscular biceps and wanted to cover USA Softball and thought it would be to his advantage, he wouldn't have on clothing to show it off and flirt as well.

I also have an issue with laying the blame solely on Erin Andrews. Is it really Erin to blame or the person who melts simply for her attention? It takes two to dance the two-step so even if she is leading, there is still someone else following along willingly. If I am at work and an attractive co-worker convinces me that she needs help by batting her eyes or asking about my biceps before feeling them for herself, am I not equally involved if I agree to such an offer and flex for her to feel? I am a happily married man (and I think she is happy too?) and even if I was single, it is still my responsibility to decide what is right and what is wrong. Besides, its not like Lou Pinella walked out and handed her some dollar bills and told her to "shake it baby and I will make it rain." It was a lighthearted mood in the clubhouse which everyone except Mike Nadel seemed to enjoy and though my baseball stint ended when I became too old to play Little League, I seem to recall the game being about people having fun. What is wrong with some playful give and take between a player and a journalist as long as it doesn't cross the personal boundaries of those involved? Maybe if Lou walked out and asked Erin to leave because that's not what he wanted in the clubhouse I could understand but even he didn't seem to mind and played along with it. So next time before you accuse Erin of using her sexuality to get closer to the players, why not ask the players why they allow it and in some cases, encourage it to happen. To me, the only thing you may have done was upset some girlfriend or wife who will now read Erin was in there and what will that accomplish? Nothing, not a single thing but at least your conscience is clean now.

Look, am I defending Erin Andrews because I like her work? Yes I am and her being attractive is a great addition to the broadcasts as well. Then again, if Barbara Walters was delivering the news, I would still listen to see what news item was being reported. I may disagree with ESPN at times but utilizing beautiful women who have a knowledge of sports is not disgraceful, simply appealing to those who would pay more attention. Many sports fans love a pretty face delivering the news and last I checked, its not like women like Erin are ignorant about sports. When they decide to do an all bikini broadcast using models reading off cue cards then we can talk but these are professionals working hard and occasionally trying to keep the mood light. So next time you think Erin is scooping you on a story because the guys like her better, maybe you need to think about what you can do to improve your situation. To me, I am not a journalist nor did I major in it in college but a great journalist finds a way to get the best story, not find excuses for why they did not. There are many out there who do this better then me but I will never resort to blaming them because I didn't get the story or choose to instead make myself part of the story. My blog may not be the best out there but I will work as hard as I can to do my best with what I have available to me and if Erin Andrews is simply doing the same, then more power to her.

1 comment:

WeisGipper said...

Please stop by and take part in the Football Friday Chat this Friday, August 8 in the IBB Chat Room. Friday's topics will include Media Day, the start of camp, the Beer Olympics, Impact Freshmen, and whatever else you have in mind. Also there will the Moderator of the great Syracuse Blog: Troy Nunes is an Absolute Magician, on hand to field any questions you have about the Orange.

The chat starts at 3 p.m. EST and you can join by either clicking on the IBB Chat Room link on the right hand side of the IBB blog page or by typing this URL: http://client11.addonchat.com/sc.php?id=292584

Hope to see everyone there, and as always, GO IRISH!