Doug Gottlieb Compares Bobby Petrino To R. Kelly

On a recent installment of the “CBS Sports Radio Minute,” Doug Gottlieb likened the chances of Auburn hiring Bobby Petrino as their next football coach, to that of singer R. Kelly, who once had a relationship with an underage girl, being hired as “a chaperone at a junior high dance.”

As you know, the CBS Sports Radio Network doesn’t launch fulltime for another six weeks or so. Until then, CBS Sports talent such as Boomer Esiason (“The NFL Today”) are lending their voices and opinions to a daily feature called “The CBS Sports Radio Minute.”

Also among those participating in this venture is Doug Gottlieb, who will be hosting a daily afternoon drive show on CBSSR starting January 2.

Among the topics of his several minutes of minutiae on Tuesday was the rumors circulating that embattled Arkansas Razorbacks coach Bobby Petrino – you might remember him from a little motorcycle mishap with a mistress, Jessica Dorrell – is the favorite to become the new head coach for Auburn’s football program.

“Bobby Petrino isn’t hireable,” Gottlieb argues. “It’s not because he cheated on his wife with somebody else’s fiancee; it isn’t because he lied to Louisville about meeting with Auburn back in the day when he was Louisville head coach; it isn’t because he left the Atlanta Falcons in the middle of his first year by leaving notes in the players’ locker in the middle of the night; not because he lied to the cops in Fayetteville, or to his boss at Arkansas. It’s because he hired his side dime (Jessica Dorrell) as recruiting coordinator and violated state and federal hiring laws.

“Bobby Petrino is about as hireable now,” Gottlieb concludes, “as R. Kelly is as a chaperone at a junior high dance.”

Whoa, was that Doug Gottlieb or Dennis Miller with a “CBS Sports Radio Minute”?

Gottlieb obviously made a strong, detailed argument as to why Petrino is damaged goods for Auburn’s sideline. But at the same time, he also chose to exhibit his comedic wit (“side dime” – hilarious!). He also has a tendency to work in topical cliches into his sixty-second soliloquys. For example, in another minute on Tuesday on the frontrunners in the Heisman Trophy race, the underlying theme was, “the Mayans.” He also took a page out of the same “the world is ending on December 21” playbook in a “sports radio minute” last week.

It has gotten to the point that the hosts on CBS Radio’s own sports talk stations are starting to dislike the guy. For example, Philadelphia’s late midday/afternoon drive duo of Anthony Gargano and Glen Macnow on 94 WIP have started a new unofficial feature on their show, once the Gottlieb-voiced “CBS Sports Radio Minutes” start rolling in at 3 PM: an immediate one-minute rebuttal of Gottlieb’s piece by the WIP hosts (Macnow mostly) explaining to listeners that what they just heard was excruciatingly awful on so many levels.

And in New York, WFAN’s Mike Francesa (or a reasonable facsimile) had a bone to pick with Doug.

If Doug Gottlieb is going to go Doug Stanhope during his one-minute rants, he should toe the line of caution: In the past, some have made comparisons to controversial people in making a point. Four years ago, in a column for ESPN’s now-defunct “Page 2,” Jemele Hill likened being a fan of the Boston Celtics to “saying Hitler was a victim”; she would be suspended for her choice of words and later issue an apology.

Then again, maybe this is the audience that CBS Sports Radio is attempting to cater to. After all, one of the co-hosts of its brand new morning show once compared himself to Anne Frank.

Next time on the CBS Sports Radio Minute, Doug Gottlieb might tell us that Philadelphia Eagles head coach Andy Reid should not consider starting Michael Vick as his quarterback if he recovers from a concussion, because the way the season has turned out, Reid doesn’t have a dog in this fight.

Auld Lang Sigh: Sexual Harassment Lawsuit Against WIP Bigwig Another Black Eye For Sports Radio

A lawsuit filed against Marc Rayfield, who oversees several Philadelphia radio stations, including sports WIP-AM/FM, is yet another blow to sports radio in a year that has been totally out of bounds.

The former director of marketing communications for a Philadelphia news station is taking her former boss to court on grounds of sexual harassment.

Attorneys Samuel First and Christopher Wagner have filed a lawsuit against CBS Radio’s entities in New York and Philadelphia on behalf of their client, Shelley Kanther, who claims she endured a “highly offensive, discriminatory environment and culture at CBS Philly.” Kanther was fired from her position at KYW Newsradio 1060 in Philadelphia, an action that she thinks is “in retaliation for… complaints” about the “degrading and extremely upsetting” atmosphere that she and co-workers experienced while working at the top-rated all-news station in Market No. 7. “No remedial action of any kind was ever taken” at KYW, according to the lawsuit, “despite Ms. Kanther’s repeated complaints.”

Specifically identified in the lawsuit by Kanther is CBS Radio Philadelphia Senior Vice President and Market Manager Marc Rayfield, whom Kanther dubbed “one of the worst offenders” during her tenure at KYW.

In addition to KYW, Rayfield also oversees five other radio stations in the cluster, including WIP, which has been broadcasting a sports format on AM 610 for close to a quarter-century – and just this past fall, added a simulcast on 94.1 FM; the station now brands itself as “SportsRadio 94 WIP.” This is actually Rayfield’s second go-round working at WIP: in the early 1990’s, he had previously served as the station’s local sales manager when it was owned by Spectacor Broadcasting. He was hired in the same capacity by KYW in 1992, and worked his way up to station manager. Later, KYW owner CBS Radio merged with subsequent WIP owner Infinity Broadcasting, and Rayfield had assumed responsibilites for WIP.

I could go into detail about some of the graphic “locker room behavior” that is described in Kanther’s lawsuit, but I won’t. I’ll actually direct readers here. And when you read the alleged comments and actions depicted in the lawsuit, consider this quote from the same lawsuit picked up by this source:

“… Kanther once complained about the discriminatory treatment to another female employee, who in turn told Kanther that the harassment was par for the course, and that ‘that’s always how it has been here’…”

One wonders if WIP employees experienced the same “highly offensive” environment that Kanther has while at KYW. I myself am not alleging, nor confirming, that a similar workplace exists or has existed at WIP. But knowing that Rayfield manages five radio stations – actually, four, when legendary rock station WYSP flipped to a simulcast of what was then known as “Sports Radio 610” and is now known as WIP-FM, though AM 610 occasionally airs programming different from 94.1 FM at times – the immediate thought is whether or not the same behavior can be found in the work environments of all of the radio stations under Rayfield’s watch.

Not to single out WIP specifically, but when you read about the alleged tawdry goings-on at KYW, anyone familiar with Philadelphia radio may immediately ask themselves, “Is this business as usual at WIP?”

In fact, we are coming off of a year in which sports radio personalities have engaged in regrettable behavior, on and off the air. This past spring, former ESPN Radio 1000/Chicago personality Jay Mariotti, who is also seen on ESPN, was arrested in Los Angeles for assaulting his girlfriend. In August, nationally syndicated host Tony Bruno referred to Giants pitcher Ramon Ramirez on Twitter as an “illegal alien pitcher” after a pitch hit a Philles player, ensuing in a benches-clearing brawl. Just this week, we witnessed another lesson in how not to use Twitter as a sports radio personality, as Pittsburgh’s Mark Madden took an unwarranted shot at all women by instructing a female listener to “get in the kitchen, have a kid, dance ’round a pole.” (While the radio station Madden works for has an alternative music format, Madden has a strong sports background.) And, of course, there was the recent fallout with Albany sports radio host Bruce Jacobs and his comments about the WNBA which invoked gay slurs, which was first reported right here on

2011 also saw another lawsuit being filed, this one specifically against a sports radio station. Back in March, Jen Royle, reporter for Baltimore’s WJZ-FM “105.7 The Fan” – which is also owned by CBS Radio – hit rival sports station WNST, and its owner and main radio personality, Nestor Aparicio, with a defamation lawsuit stemming from comments Aparicio made on the air about Royle, including, among others, “that she looks like a stripper.” As you can imagine, radio station WNST, like its owner, Nestor, is nicknamed “nasty.” (Royle would drop the lawsuit right before Labor Day.)

And now, this latest lawsuit against one of the people in charge of one of the most well-known sports radio stations in the country.

Again, I’m not holding WIP or any of their personalities accountable. (Even former WIP host Mike Missanelli, who now holds down afternoon drive on rival WPEN-FM “97.5 The Fanatic.”) Yes, the lawsuit revolves around another radio station Rayfield oversees.

But to borrow an old adage, where there’s smoke, there’s fire.

Name-calling. Gay-bashing. Drunk-tweeting.

These are just some of the examples of things that sports radio can do without.

With all of the ugliness that has taken place amongst the sports radio landscape in 2011, what does 2012 have in store?

Hopefully, more on X’s and O’s, and not so much, T & A.