Trump Critic Jemele Hill Leaves ESPN
A prominent anti-Trump critic who made ESPN nearly unwatchable after injecting her political opinions into sports commentary has decided to leave the network after 12 years.
“Over the last several weeks, there have been a lot of rumors about my job status. Today is my last day at ESPN. More from me on closing one of the most special chapters in my life:” she Tweeted, attaching a message thanking several colleagues and mentors at the network.
Over the last several weeks, there have been a lot of rumors about my job status. Today is my last day at ESPN.
More from me on closing one of the most special chapters in my life: pic.twitter.com/jReaH5sWhW
— Jemele Hill (@jemelehill) September 14, 2018
Perhaps the most memorable moment from Hill’s career at the sports giant was when she publicly beefed with President Donald J. Trump on Twitter.
“Donald Trump is a white supremacist who has largely surrounded himself w/ other white supremacists,” she said on Twitter almost exactly one year ago.
Donald Trump is a white supremacist who has largely surrounded himself w/ other white supremacists.
— Jemele Hill (@jemelehill) September 11, 2017
In her decade-long career at ESPN before Trump took office, she never labeled him as such, though he was a public figure during that time.
She also famously called Trump a “bigot” and “unqualified and unfit to be president,” adding that he never would have been elected if he weren’t white.
Hill was suspended for violating ESPN’s social media guidelines in October after calling on fans to boycott the Dallas Cowboys when team owner Jerry Jones threatened to bench players who did not stand for the National Anthem.
Hill has hinted at her departure for some time.
“It feels very much like this next iteration of my career will be more about me being behind the camera, creating content, writing scripted and unscripted shows and movies than it will be in sports,” Hill said during an interview at OZY Fest.
Mixing sports with politics did not prove to be the smartest strategy for the formerly-respected sports titan. In fact, the company released a statement in June saying that evening SportsCenter ratings were up 19% – after they fired Hill and her co-host Michael Smith from the show.
The network has lost nearly 13 million subscribers since its 2011 peak.