ESPN has apologized profusely for its Michael Sam shower reporting, in which reporter Josina Anderson told “SportsCenter” viewers that Sam had been avoiding showering with his teammates. Pretty awful stuff: if I had done that story in high school, my journalism advisor would have spiked it and made me do pushups. But ESPN’s standards are not that high.
After ESPN’s apology, Rams’ DE Chris Long tweeted this:
Dear ESPN, Everyone but you is over it.
— Chris Long (@JOEL9ONE) August 26, 2014
Well, not everyone, Chris:
Rams coach Jeff Fisher remains angry over an ESPN report that dealt in part with the “showering habits” of defensive end Michael Sam by ESPN reporter Josina Anderson.
“I’m extremely disappointed in her piece,” Fisher told the Post-Dispatch on Wednesday, not long before the team boarded buses for Lambert Airport and the trip to Miami for Thursday’s preseason finale.
“I think it’s unethical,” Fisher continued. “I think it’s very, very unprofessional. Not only the piece itself, the content. The manner in which she did it.”
Fisher went on to say that Anderson “manufactured” the story, because Sam made the 75-man roster that day and she had nothing else to write about.
“She was out of line because she went and contacted several players on their personal time. Misled them with questions and then put this piece together.”
During the report, Anderson said one Rams player told her that Sam was “respecting our space” when it came to showering, and may be waiting to take a shower so as not to make teammates feel uncomfortable.
A couple of other players told her they weren’t keeping track of Sam’s shower regimen.
“I’m disappointed for Mike,” Fisher said. “I’m disappointed for the players who she put in this position, and mostly I’m disappointed for her because she felt what she was doing was right _ and it wasn’t right.”
We can understand how Long and some other Rams teammates may want to forget this issue, but perhaps they should check with their coach first before tweeting.
And I still don’t think that Sam is going to make the final roster. That would have been a much better story. Also, can we refer to this story from now on as Watergate II? No? OK. (Sticks hands in pockets, bows head, kicks can).