Rich Eisen didn’t appreciate being “sent to the minors”
There’s a reason why ESPN’s “This Is SportsCenter” ads have endured for 25 years. The clever spots’ wry sense of humor is timeless. Any sports fan of a certain age could tell you their favorite—and then add five more to the list.
The commercials were just as meaningful for the SportsCenter anchors who starred in them. In a series of tweets on Monday night, former ESPN anchor Rich Eisen described the “in-house competition” centered on the beloved ads.
Eisen specifically mentioned a spot called “Sent to the Minors,” in which he gets demoted to reading announcements for a high school.
Eisen, who was still a relative newcomer at ESPN, took offense to being the one picked to play the demoted anchor and went to veteran Dan Patrick to complain.
I’ll just embed Eisen’s whole Twitter thread here, because there are too many interesting asides to just summarize the whole thing.
Eisen’s first job after going to grad school at Northwestern was as a sports anchor for KRCR-TV, Redding, California’s ABC affiliate. Today, that’s the 131st-largest media market in the United States. Two years later, he was at ESPN. So Eisen was right to view himself as an underdog, but at the same time, he was one of the most talented and beloved anchors on the network. Even people who are at the top of their field have serious doubts about their abilities.
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