Earlier this week, prolific author Jeff Pearlman wrote a scathing piece about the way that Erin Andrews handled her post-game interview with Richard Sherman. Pearlman’s post did contain some valid lamentations about the plight of women in sports media who were strong reporters but were not telegenic enough to move up the ranks, but the way it was written came off as an unwarranted personal attack on Andrews’ professionalism.
Pearlman has realized that his words were not conveyed in the manner he intended and written a follow-up blog post apologizing for that:
[W]hen it comes to women reporters, networks (in my opinion) place too great an emphasis on looks. I know … I know—it’s a visual medium, and attractiveness draws viewers. Still, it strikes me as an awful double standard. Nobody’s demanding beauty and sexiness from, say, Chris Berman or Joe Buck or Stuart Scott. Yet it seems that—bottom line—women with sex appeal have an inside track over women with fantastic knowledge and poise but, say, a belly. Or a mole. I get it. Really, I do. It just infuriates me, because I’ve known very talented women who have felt they don’t really have a shot.
Pearlman later acknowledges that the post came off as “juvenile and stupid,” and, in doing so, torpedoed the point he was trying to make. While it always feels weird to judge somebody else’s apology, this one was about as candid, direct, and honest as one could reasonably hope for.
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