Jason Whitlock Back At ESPN In Part Because Of Ability To Launch "Black Grantland"
Columnist Jason Whitlock earlier this week announced he is leaving FoxSports.com for ESPN and said ESPN President John Skipper "carved out a vision for me, what he would like to have me do," that was "everything I wanted to hear." Whitlock on ESPN.com's "The BS Report" said, "For lack of a better description, and I hope this isn't offensive, but I'm going to get to do something along the lines of a black Grantland. Man, that was like music to my ears." He said he would "love to work with some young people and to really have a chance to influence sports culture and the sports world with some young people that ... are going to try to be original thinkers." ESPN's Bill Simmons said, "The last time I checked until a couple of weeks ago, you were a big part of this Fox Sports re-launch. ... You were supposed to be on that three-hour show at 11:00pm every night. They were carving out something for you." Whitlock said the report of him being involved with "Fox Sports Live" was a "bit premature and not completely accurate with the situation of me and Fox Sports." Whitlock: "I am, at the end of the day, a writer. ... I had been trying to get Fox Sports to understand me more as a writer and what my goals there were as a writer, and then I'm more than happy to do television and more than happy to do radio. I think I'm good at those things, but what makes me happiest every day is being a sports columnist." He continued, "I struggled, I think, in trying to get them to understand that about me and to get them to understand that perhaps that what I did in written form didn't match up with their vision of how they wanted their web site to go" ("The BS Report," ESPN.com, 8/15).