Wednesday night, after a hot mic caught him using a homophobic slur, Reds broadcaster Thom Brennaman didn’t know if he’d ever be putting on headphones for Fox Sports again.
A day later, he knows he won’t be.
Less than 24 hours after he can be heard saying “one of the great f*g capitals of the world,” Brennaman was suspended by the Reds and now fired by Fox Sports.
“FOX Sports is extremely disappointed with Thom Brennaman’s remarks during Wednesday’s Cincinnati Reds telecast,” the network said in a statement about the longtime NFL broadcaster. “The language used was abhorrent, unacceptable, and not representative of the values of FOX Sports. As it relates to Brennaman’s FOX NFL role, we are moving forward with our NFL schedule which will not include him.”
Brennaman had called NFL games for Fox since 1994, and recently teamed up with former NFL linebacker Chris Speilman in the booth.
On Wednesday, during a Reds-Royals doubleheader in Kansas City, Brennaman could be heard using the homophobic slur in an apparent conversation with another individual.
He later apologized for the slur, and not surprisingly, he noted how out of character this was, despite the fact that it seemed to roll off his tongue effortlessly.
“That is not who I am, it never has been,” said Brennaman before signing off, possibly for good. Brennaman left the booth after his apology.
Updated on August 20, 2020 at 6:35 p.m.: Brennaman, though, now wants us to believe that he had no idea about the history of the slur he used, writing in an Op-Ed for the Cincinnati Enquirer the following:
“I used a word that is both offensive and insulting. In the past 24 hours, I have read about its history; I had no idea it was so rooted in hate and violence and am particularly ashamed that I, someone who makes his living by the use of words, could be so careless and insensitive. It’s a word that should have no place in my vocabulary and I will certainly never utter it again.”
Hard to imagine a 56-year-old man who makes a living traveling the country talking for a living could possibly be unaware of the offensive nature of the slur he used.
On Wednesday, the Reds suspended the broadcaster indefinitely, and called his comment “horrific.”
“He was pulled off the air, and effective immediately was suspended from doing Reds broadcasts. We will be addressing our broadcasting team in the coming days,” read a statement from the team.
Brennaman has been calling Reds games since 2006, and is the son of Hall of Fame Reds broadcaster Marty Brennaman.