Skip Bayless surely takes a side of debates he doesn’t actually believe from time to time, but directly contracting himself? That’s new.
As part of an “Embrace Debate” philosophy and in the spirit of competition with “First Take”, Fox Sports hired Skip Bayless away from ESPN in 2016. Shannon Sharpe is across the desk from him on FS1’s Undisputed each morning, with guests to help (theoretically) advance the conversation on certain topics.
Long-time viewers of Bayless know his opinion on LeBron James, Tim Tebow, the Dallas Cowboys, the San Antonio Spurs, etc. But there are surely manufactured debates on more nuanced topics, without actual belief behind them. Right or wrong, it is what it is when hot takes become the norm to get attention and Bayless is well-compensated for what he does.
It was only a matter of time before Bayless directly contradicted himself on a topic, spanning from ESPN to FS1 and years of his Twitter feed. But, as it turns out, it didn’t even take that long for opposite opinions on Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers. Thanks, or no thanks?, to YouTube user Will Schleichert for putting it together.
Schleichert worked at ESPN for a time, with a similar mashup video involving Keith Olbermann that got him fired, and his LinkedIn profile shows he was a Senior Associate Producer at FOX Sports for three years until May of this year. So I suppose he’s free to criticize a former employer and the direction Fox Sports has taken recently without backlash, and the result was perhaps the product of having some extra time on his hands.
Watching Bayless debate himself, even giving Rodgers one of his trademark forced nicknames (“Errant Rodgers”) is fairly surreal. But credibility of his arguments is not the reason he was hired by Fox Sports, and Bayless can laugh all the way to the bank every two weeks.