Skip Bayless, Emmy NomineeS

Did you know that sports has its very own Emmy Awards? It's perfectly fair to honor the great work being done out there in the televised sports field, with amazing technical inovation in game broadcasts and shows like Outside the Lines, E:60 and Real Sports doing real, actual journalism on par with anything outside the "toy department." But it's also fair to point out that these awards are largely meaningless.

It's an industry-wide circle jerk, followed by a dick-measuring contest. Let's all get dressed up and hand out shiny trophies (costing $400 each, payable by the winners) and talk about how great we are! Let's see if we got more nominees and wins than the competition! This is true for any awards ceremony, but especially true for the Sports Emmys, which is just bloated with categories. There are three separate awards handed out for best commercial/promo.

The nominees were announced today, and because there's only so much sports programming, if you're regularly on television you probably got nominated. Take the "Outstanding Sports Personality—Studio Analyst" category, in which seven different people were nominated. We can take issue with a number of them—Harold Reynolds is deathly boring, Charles Barkley is buffoonish and uninformed. But right there, between Herbstreit and Dilfer, is one Skip Bayless.

Skip Bayless is a troll. A professional troll, the broadcast equivalent of some mook on a message board saying the most outrageous thing he can just because he knows it will get a reaction. He is everything that's wrong with televised sports debate, and he is wildly popular. And even if it doesn't matter who wins a Sports Emmy (it doesn't), the Academy ought to at least feign the pretension that these things are supposed to award quality, not popularity. Unless Skip's loudmouthed inanity is indeed the future of discourse, and the Emmys only nominated him to troll us into writing about it. In which case, nomination well-chosen and well-earned.

(Full disclosure: my significant other's work is nominated this year, and I want that statuette in our apartment badly, very badly. As meaningless as it may be.)