Adam Schefter defends breaking Andrew Luck retirement story
Andrew Luck’s original plan regarding his retirement was to hold a press conference on Sunday afternoon to announce the shocking story. The matter became complicated when ESPN reporter Adam Schefter broke the news on Saturday evening during an Indianapolis Colts home preseason game. Due to the news leaking, many of Luck’s teammates did not hear about the news directly from the quarterback, and Luck ended up holding an impromptu press conference after the game.
Even though he upset the plans for the way Luck was going to handle his retirement announcement, Schefter defends his handling of the news in a recent appearance on “The Dan Patrick Show,”. Schefter said that he had no awareness of the status of the Colts’ game, and moreover, his job is to report big news stories like this one.
“Number one, I’m at a surprise 75th birthday dinner for my mother-in-law,” Schefter said. “I apologize for not tracking where and when the Colts players’ preseason game was when the information’s coming into me. That’s number one. Number two, as you mentioned, that is my job when I get news. Number three, there have been any number of stories that I’ve sat on over the years. Somebody’s asked me to wait, can you just wait until I notify the player of this trade, or the coach knows he’s being fired or hired, or whatever it may be, before you report it.
“I got the information. I never stopped to think, boy, I wonder what part of the game they’re in. I wonder if this will be disruptive. I wondered how am I going to get this confirmed? Am I going to give people a heads up? Which I did. I called a couple of different people in the Colts organization to let them know that I’m going to be reporting a story. Nobody picked up. Nobody got back to me. Somebody could’ve called me back and said, hey, we’re in whatever part of the game we’re in, would you mind waiting? Nobody did that. I reported it when I felt comfortable with the information, which I would do 100 times out of 100 over again.”
Schefter added that, given the number of people within the organization who were aware of Luck’s decision long before Schefter reported it, it was remarkable that the news did not leak sooner than it did.
“The owner, GM, and head coach of the Colts organization knew last week,” Schefter said. “Andrew knew last week. Andrew told teammates on Thursday. Andrew told teammates on Friday. They discussed as an organization having a press conference on Friday or Sunday at 3. I don’t know why they waited to push it off to Sunday but they did. That was their decision. … When there are that many people who know, frankly, I am shocked that it didn’t get out sooner.”
The timing of Schefter’s report meant that fans learned of Luck’s retirement during the second half of the Colts’ preseason game. Some of those fans booed Luck as he walked off the field.
People may not like it, but that is not the reporter’s fault. As Schefter points out, the Colts could have announced it at any point before that game and chose not to.