SBD/January 11, 2013/Media

American Beauty: Columnists Defend Musburger Regarding BCS Game Comments

ESPN apologized for Musburger's comments the day after the game
Brent Musburger was roundly criticized for comments directed at Katherine Webb, the girlfriend of Alabama QB A.J. McCarron, during ESPN's broadcast of the Discover BCS National Championship Game Monday night, but he is seeing several columnists now come to his defense. In DC, Tracee Hamilton writes under the header, "Brent Musburger Has Nothing To Apologize For." She writes, "If the camera continues to linger on the beautiful girlfriend in the stands, what exactly is Musburger -- who is there to comment on what you, the viewer is seeing -- supposed to say? He has game notes on the players, but beyond saying she was a former Miss Alabama, he doesn't have a lot of talking points to work with." Hamilton adds, "I didn't see anything offensive in what he said ... If he said, 'Boy, I'd like some of that,' then fire him. But he didn't. He didn't even come close to that" (WASHINGTON POST, 1/11). In Illinois, Mike North asks, "Do people really have to apologize now for stating a young woman in the stands is pretty? Musburger's job is to describe what fans see on the screen, and he did just that. ... Don't change Brent -- you did nothing wrong by my book" (Illinois DAILY HERALD, 1/11). In N.Y., Phil Mushnick: "Musburger said nothing -- nothing -- wrong. If he was guilty of anything it was of being corny, the way uncles at Thanksgiving tease the teens at the table by saying, 'You must have to beat the boys/girls back with a stick.'" He "reprised a harmless, 90-year-old American folk axiom: The QB always gets the pretty girl" (N.Y. POST, 1/11). NBC's Michelle Beadle said of Musburger's comments, "It cracked me up. It's sort of like you go to a restaurant with your dad and he starts flirting with the waitress -- eesh, kind of embarrassing." She added that Musburger should not be blamed for the situation. Beadle: "Those shots happen when it's a boring game. So blame Notre Dame" (USA TODAY, 1/11).
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