Earlier today, ESPN Radio host Colin Cowherd announced what would drive him into an early retirement.
Cowherd, host of the relatively well known radio and podcast show The Herd With Colin Cowherd, stated with mockery and childishness that he would retire if he were "forced" to cover eSports, or "guys playing video games" as he calls it. He berated the announcers, viewers of the program, and participants by making fun of them for enjoying a multi-billion dollar entertainment industry. That's right. ESPN is backing a sport that's worth billions of dollars, is on an up-climb in popularity, and sells out arenas like any other sport. Silly ESPN.
Here are just a few of Cowherd's such eloquently put statements regarding the Heroes of the Dorm tournament this weekend in which was not only widely watched, but the first gaming tournament in gaming history to be broadcast on a major network.
- "You want me out? Demand video game tournaments on ESPN."
- "Somebody lock the basement door at mom's house and don't let 'em out."
- "I tagged out at Harry Potter. I-I-I tagged out at Harry Potter. I tolerated Donkey Kong, ok? I'll tell you what that was the equivalent of there: of me putting a gun in my mouth and having to listen to that."
- "You know what the funny thing is? Listen to how intense they are. Those guys are totally into it."
These comments were not only disrespectful to the sport -- no matter if one counts it as a sport or not -- but it was everything that the gaming population has been having to deal with for years. Verbal bullies with a platform to speak making those who aren't as "cool" as them feel worse than any physical attack. By playing sound bites from Revenge of the Nerds with Ogre yelling, "NERDS!" and Pac-Man's infamous death jingle, Cowherd laid it on thick. The sad thing is, some people seem to agree with him.
I'm not asking for a riot. We do not need any more of those. I'm not asking for an apology for how he feels. What he should recognize however is simple: he's a prick. Plain and simple. It was people like this growing up that I, as a self-proclaimed nerd, have despised.
It's bullying, Colin. It isn't professional and if anything, you're more childish than having a gamertag could ever make somebody and that's disappointing. Hell, Michelle Beadle seemed to enjoy it plenty and she knew nothing of the sport either.