Rumors continue to flutter over Chicago this afternoon concerning sensitive Around the Horn talking head Jay Mariotti and his possible move to the Chicago Tribune. A couple of sources close to the situation have emailed me and said that the Trib's editorial staff are taking the rumors seriously, and that "mass resignations" would result if Mariotti were to be hired on the print side of the operation. From the Chi-ball blog, from which we linked this morning:
Sources tell Chi-ball that Jay Mariotti has had talks with the Chicago Tribune. Mariotti, can not write for another newspaper until his contract runs out with the Chicago Sun-Times. There is nothing however stopping the Trib from hiring the controversial Mariotti to be strictly an internet columnist. According to the source, this would not be a popular move within the Tribune staff .
Said one Deadspin emailer: "People at the Trib have heard this rumor just like the rest of us, and it has definitely been a cause for concern for the staff. I would say more people believe it to be true than not. ... Either this is being handled at a very high level (and/or is being compartmentalized as some sort of web-only deal) by one of the Zell-ots, or it isn’t happening at all. If it does in fact happen, expect resignations." Just to add to the speculation, Rahula Strohl's sports media blog in the Tribune had this account of Monday's Around the Horn:
"Mariotti "won" the show and in his final face time, called himself "between newspaper jobs." Wait, didn't he say that newspapers were dead?
Earlier in the show Mariotti was discussing the Bears' upset of the Colts, and said: "Three Chicago teams in first place at once, that is shellshocking." Reali's reply: "Wish we had a writer who wrote in Chicago." Mariotti To Tribune? [Chi-ball]