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#pounditFriday, July 19, 2024

Kirk Herbstreit issues clarification after bowl game comments go viral

Kirk Herbstreit smiles

Kirk Herbstreit issued a clarification on Twitter Saturday after something he said about bowl games earlier in the day went viral.

Herbstreit and fellow ESPN analyst Desmond Howard were talking on the network’s set at the Rose Bowl about players who opt out of bowl games.

Both men, who played college football in the late ’80s/early ’90s, were critical of the attitude of current players towards non-College Football Playoff bowl games.

“I think this era of players doesn’t love football,” Herbstreit concluded.

“We’re dealing with a total different mentality with these student-athletes nowadays,” Howard agreed.

Both believe players don’t hold bowl games in high regard if they’re not playing in one of the CFP games.

Here is the clip:

Later in the day, Herbstreit shared his clarification. He apologized for generalizing too much and lumping all players together. But he stood by his belief that there are many players who don’t seem to love the game.

Herbstreit and Howard played in a different era, one where players didn’t opt out of bowl games to protect their draft stock. During their era, bowl games were a big deal. Things have changed.

And while Herbstreit was wrong to generalize so much, he’s not wrong that many more players are treating college football with business decisions. To some people who love the sport, the history, the rivalries, the tradition and the pageantry, these attitude shifts can be difficult and upsetting to process.

Photo: Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports


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