Notre Dame officials have removed broadcaster and Fighting Irish legend Allen Pinkett from this weekend's broadcast of the Navy-ND game in Dublin after Pinkett told a Chicago radio station the Irish "need more criminals" in order to be competitive.
The IMG Notre Dame Radio Network issued a statement today reading, in part:
Allen Pinkett, a commentator on the IMG Notre Dame Radio Network who made unacceptable comments this week about student athletes, will not be part of this weekend's broadcast in Dublin [...] Notre Dame taking on Navy at the Emerald Isle Classic in Dublin is an historic game showcasing the very best of American college sports. The event deserves to be free of distraction. Further decisions on this matter will be made in the coming days.
Pinkett was provided several opportunities to retract or clarify his statement during yesterday's appearance on 670 The Score, but declined. He responded today with an apology:
I am deeply sorry and did not intend to take away the focus from the upcoming season opener. I especially would like to offer my sincere apology to the current members of Notre Dame's football team, including Coach Kelly, the entire Notre Dame community, the IMG College Audio Network and the Ohio State football program. As a proud Notre Dame graduate, I wish nothing but the best for our football team and the University.
It's not yet clear if Pinkett will keep his job with Notre Dame, where he's worked in both the play-by-play and color analyst roles.