Wednesday, August 23, 2017

ESPN pulls broadcaster Robert Lee from Virginia football game over ‘name coincidence’

ESPN has removed an announcer from its broadcast of the University of Virginia’s first football game next month because he has the same name as a Confederate general memorialized in statues that are being taken down across the country, the New York Times reports.
The network announced late Tuesday that the announcer, Robert Lee, a part-time employee who calls about a dozen college football games a year for ESPN, would no longer participate in the broadcast of the Sept. 2 game in Charlottesville, Virginia, which became the centre of violent clashes this month during a white supremacist gathering.
Lee, whose full-time job is at a payroll services company in Albany, New York, started announcing games for ESPN and its other networks last fall, according to his LinkedIn page. For the past 17 years, he has also announced men’s basketball games for Siena College in Albany. He graduated from Syracuse University in 1999 with a degree in broadcast journalism.

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