Rob Parker was suspended by ESPN in December for some racist comments he made on First Take about Redskins’ QB Robert Griffin III, and as his suspension drew to a close, ESPN announced his contract wasn’t being renewed.
Less than a month later, Rob Parker is at work again, this time writing for an ESPN-funded website.
The Shadow League, a relatively new website, announced this week that Rob Parker had been hired as a columnist. Here’s Parker’s first offering, if you’re interested.
The Shadow League is connected with ESPN, as the site’s boss, Keith Clinkscales, told The Root in January. (If the name Clinkscales sounds familiar, you may remember he … well, he sat next to Erin Andrews on a flight once.) ESPN’s connection? “Funding.”
I called Parker this afternoon to ask him about his new job, and whether or not he wanted to address an industry rumor – that the reason he was hired at the Shadow League was so that he doesn’t sue the Worldwide Leader over his dismissal.
“I don’t know anything about the Shadow League and a connection to ESPN, I was hired by Keith,” said a flustered Parker. When I asked him if he thinks he was hired so he wouldn’t sue ESPN, he took my phone number and said, “I’m gonna have to call you back on that one.” I asked him again and he said, “I’ll call you back.” Then he hung up. He has not called back.
An ESPN spokesman said the Shadow League is “independently owned and ESPN does not have control over any of its operations or activities, including who they hire.”