Charles Barkley is not the guy you talk to if you’re looking for sugar coated statements or anything less than his honest opinion on whatever topic you choose to open up with him. In a recent interview, Chuck moved from discussing Spurs coach Gregg Popovich to why it’s difficult for unattractive women to get on camera jobs with the media… Random, right? But check out what he had to say.
I will tell you one form of discrimination no one ever talks about regarding sideline reporters. If you are an ugly woman, you have no chance of getting a TV job.
That might seem a bit harsh but I wholeheartedly believe that. Now you might be thinking, hey I’ve seen reporter “X” and she doesn’t move the needle for me. But, rock with me for a second, think about the female sideline reporters that end up making it big. Fox’s Erin Andrews and Michelle Beadle come to mind.
ESPN’s show ‘First Take” went through several hosts before settling on the poised and classy, Cari Champion.I don’t recall a time seeing so many male guests openly gush about how attractive the moderator was until Ms. Champion joined the crew. Journalist Rob Parker even brought her a rose on one show.
If you think of your history, back in the 70’s the first woman on “NFL Today” was an ex-beauty queen, Jayne Kennedy.
If all things are equal from a sports knowledge perspective, of course people are going to want someone attractive to look at. Does that mean it should stop someone who isn’t “beauty queen” material? No. But it also doesn’t mean you shouldn’t put effort into your look. Attractive means your hair, type of clothing you select, how you apply makeup. It’s more than just the physical attributes you were born with. Think of it as a bonus if you happen to be blessed with good looks too. Work your angles!
Of course there’s a twist to that too. Women in general but attractive women especially aren’t always given the benefit of the doubt when it comes to their aspirations in the sports world. I have another layer to add to that, attractive women of color. This also goes with working in sports related industries as well. There always seems to be an underlying assumption that there is an ulterior motive or that she’ll become a distraction to others (i.e. the men).
But back to Chuck for second. Charles also mentioned that it’s going to be hard for him to make it through the last four years of his broadcasting deal with Turner. Guess he’s getting a little tired of talking. That would be a shame though, I love Barkley and even when I don’t agree with him, I respect the fact that he’s honest enough to present his truth.
I do however have his replacement in mind, Chris Webber. I love his insight and knowledge on basketball coupled with the fact that’s he’s extremely articulate. If we have to start getting ready for Chuck’s departure, more of CWebb is required!