Chat with Jemele Hill
Welcome to SportsNation! On Monday, ESPN Page 2 writer Jemele Hill stops by to chat about what she's been up to lately.
Hill recently wrote about Rick Pitino and apology to the public.
Send your questions now and join Hill Monday at noon ET!
Jemele Hill (12:35 PM)
So sorry for my tardiness everyone, but I completely forgot that I was doing this today. I see I have questions in here, so I'm just going to get to it.
Craig G. (Fairfield, California)
Hey Jemele, I enjoy all of your work. What is your favorite media platform to display your talents? Writing, television, etc?
Jemele Hill (12:37 PM)
Tough call. I really enjoy both, but I'm most happy just reporting. Those are my roots. TV has such a different impact than writing, because it so much more immediate. But first
terrell daniels (knoxville,tn)
Ms Hill:Love to hear your input on various subjects i think you are a great addition to any program you appear on.Id like to hear your take on the Vick interview last night. Contrite or conceded or necessary?
Jemele Hill (12:40 PM)
I thought the two most interesting things from that interview was 1) Vick admitting he deserved to lose $130 million and 2) him admitting he was a lazy player. I've always thought Vick was immensely gifted, but often looked unprepared. For him to admit that showed growth. I'm not sure what people mean when they question whether or not Vick was contrite. Does anyone think if he had it to do over again he would begin a dog-fighting operation? Given what he's lost, I don't. So as long as he wouldn't do the same thing again, isn't that enough contrition?
How can you defend Michael Vick, yet call for Pitino to resign? I'm not condoning cheating on one's spouse, but what he did had no impact on his job as Louisville head coach, and unlike Vick, he (seemingly) hasn't broken the law. If what he did was indeed consensual, then there's no issue here. What he does in his personal life is his own business. Sure, what he did was morally wrong, but who are you and I to cast stones?
Jemele Hill (12:43 PM)
I don't defend Michael Vick's actions, just his right to rejoin society. Unlike Pitino, Vick has actually paid a price. A huge one. He's lost over $100 million and spent two years in federal prison. He had to deal with the consequences.I know Pitino didn't do anything illegal, but you have to take into account his position of leadership. He is, to a large degree, an educator. He coaches basketball, but he also coaches young men about life. He also is the most high-profile person at University of Louisville, and probably their highest-paid employees. As a leader and teacher, he shoulders different responsibilities.His indiscretion was troubling on so many levels that it undermined his credibility as a leader/teacher. And because of that, I think he should resign.
Lawrence (Dallas by way of Detroit )
How hard was it to iinterview Charles Rogers. He came off as someone who is not really ready for the league or to really man up.
Jemele Hill (12:46 PM)
Wasn't hard at all. I thought he was extremely honest in that interview, which hinted at how much he has matured. I don't know what the future holds, but based off what I witnessed, he's making an honest attempt to get back in the NFL. He's working out religiously and according to his trainer, he's regained a lot of his speed and is running 4.4s consistently. I'm pretty sure he'll wind up in the UFL and if he does well there, I certainly could see a NFL team giving him another shot.
Ketih (Millis, MA)
Hi Jemele, I was just wondering if you would explain why we should separate McNair's private life from his professional athletic legacy, but Rick Pitino should lose his job because of his private life?
Jemele Hill (12:48 PM)
McNair was murdered, so he never had a chance to answer for his mistakes or amend them. And I never said Pitino should be permanently maligned for his indiscretion, but according to his contract, it is grounds for firing.
Tomwit NJ [via mobile]
Why should Pitino quit over his indiscretion? Did Kobe leave the NBA when he cheated on his wife. Or Magic? Or MJ? Or any number of unfaithful athletes. Is there a double standard here? Its OK for black players but not white coaches?
Jemele Hill (12:51 PM)
Has nothing to do with race, and everything to do with their positions. If Pitino were in the NBA, I would not have said he should step down. But again, he's a COLLEGE coach. He's not a player, like Kobe or the other names you mentioned. Those guys weren't teachers of young men, nor are they employed by an institution of higher learning.The reason a lot of politicians have stepped down in light of an affair is because when you are in a position of leadership, you are held to a different standard than everyone else. Fair or not.
Why has it not become as big a deal that there is an American High Schooler giving up his senior year to play pro basketball in Israel? Jennings may not have inspired more kids to go, but if he inspired them to go over even younger this could have huge ramifications.
Jemele Hill (12:53 PM)
Why isn't anybody making a huge deal out of Bryce Harper, the baseball player who dropped out of high school so he could be eligible for the draft next year?
bill (springfield, mo)
enjoy your columns. wouldn't it be nice to have a month where we talked about the games and performances rather than off-the-field antics?
Jemele Hill (12:54 PM)
You are preaching to the choir. Though this past sports weekend was pretty good. I must say, I was a bit more compelled by Usain Bolt than Tiger Woods' loss.
you stated that you have to take into account Pitino's position of leadership and being the most high-profile person and highest paid at Louisville. Well, Vick falls under all of those also. He was a leader that kids looked up to and was the most high profile and highest paid player in Atl. You sound kinda hypocritical.
Jemele Hill (12:56 PM)
Not the same. Pitino is a coach. Vick is a player. You can argue indirectly that Vick had an impact on children, but that was not a function of his job. The function of Pitino's job is to provide leadership and the fact that he represents a university, is huge. Like I said, if he were a pro coach, it would be different.
not really a question, just a comment. I love how people love to call you a racist when it is them who bring race into play with such crazy comments as the ones I am reading. Any fool can see the difference as to why a coach would need to step down. I wonder how come no one is crying about the coach at Alabama or Larry Eustacy getting fired or stepping down after doing acts that were not against the law but morally wrong...any thoughts?
Jemele Hill (12:58 PM)
As you pointed out, there are already precedents that have been established with college coaches. The bottom line is, the people who don't want Pitino to resign are enthralled by his championships, wins and what he can provide for them as a fan. I get that. But if you're the same sports fan who complains about how entitled sports figures are, realize you're their worst enabler. Sports fans, in general, don't care as long as someone is winning.
Brett (Altoona, Pennsylvania)
So Jemele, if you had to chose between Yang winning the PGA Championship or Tiger losing it, where would you say the pendulum would swing?
Jemele Hill (12:59 PM)
I say it's a little bit of both. Yang made clutch shots to win, but the reason that door was open was because Tiger lost his cool. Considering what his record was when leading a major, you have to acknowledge that he blew it. Tiger couldn't make a mid-range putt to save his life.
Pitino is a thugger and I wouldn't be shocked if he was associated with the mob.
I don't understand Skip. Sometimes he makes good points and then sometimes just flat dumb? Was Tiger really that bad this year considering he won 5 events so far and was close in all the majors? He was still consistent? Who else was as consistent as Tiger this year? I thought Yang made some huge shots. Do you really believe he is on the down slide and has to prove himself to skip?
Jemele Hill (1:01 PM)
Skip is judging Tiger by his own standards. And while I would not have rated Tiger's performance a "1" like Skip, I would call it mediocre. It's about the majors for Tiger and certainly he can't be happy with how he's lost his composure in the majors this year. I predicted on 1st and 10 that he wouldn't win a major this year. I felt it would take time for him to regain his killer instinct.Next year, I say he takes at least two majors.
Adam R (Connecticut)
Jemele, bigger upset: Giants winning Super Bowl XLII or Y.E. Yang winning PGA Championship?
Jemele Hill (1:03 PM)
Tough question. I'm going to lean toward the Super Bowl. It's always Tiger vs. the Field, whether he's ahead or not. We have seen plenty of majors where some random golfer has won. The Patriots were a game away from going undefeated. They looked unstoppable, and the Giants were just a wildcard team.
Robby O (Mechanicsville Va)
Along the same lines of your Pitino Opinons, Why do we as sports fans and writers forget that athletes and coaches are still human no matter the grasp they show for their particular sport? While I agree that these individuals should know better and they do reach a wide audience they are still subject to the temptations that we all are greed and lust being just a few of them. While it may be wrong this type of thing happens everyday in America and we never hear about. Why do you think this is?
Jemele Hill (1:05 PM)
What's the old biblical saying, to whom much is given, much is required?Yes, we all make mistakes, but some of them make mistakes that have us scratching our heads.
You blow race issues out of proportion. Why?
Jemele Hill (1:05 PM)
Be more specific.
Dan (New York )
Jemele, Here's a breath of fresh air. I don't think the fact that you are a terrible columnist and commentator has anything to do with race or sex.
Jemele Hill (1:06 PM)
J.B. (Dunmore, PA)
I think my biggest question surround Michael Vick (and really anyone who gets a huge contract) is how do you end up declaring bankruptcy? If Vick was smart, wouldn't he have put some of that money aside for somewhere down the road?
Jemele Hill (1:07 PM)
You would think so. But hey, Mike Tyson lost $300 million. You get a big enough entourage, start trying to support your entire family, get in a couple bad business deals...I suppose it can happen.
Brandon (Goldsboro N.C.) [via mobile]
Hey Jemele do you feel that the Arizona Cardinals can make another run in the NFC?
Jemele Hill (1:08 PM)
As long as they're in that division, yes. And Warner has to stay healthy.
Johnny (New York, NY)
Not a question...I can't help but notice how many self righteous haters are out here posing as sports fans. If you have never done anything wrong in your life and have never been given a second chance then you have the right to judge people as much as you please. However, none of us can claim that right. Therefore, I think it's time to let Michael Vick move on with his life and career. It's so cliche to continue to crucify him. It must really hurt some of you to see a man lose everything, go to prison for two years and still manage to sign a multi-million dollar contract. Get over it.
Do you think we've seen the last of Bart Farve?
Jemele Hill (1:09 PM)
More Bart Farve, less Brett Favre.
Mike (New York)
Who is your World Series pick?
Jemele Hill (1:11 PM)
Homer pick -- Detroit vs. Philly.Objective pick -- Boston v. Philly
Jemele, Matt Stafford looked really good after he threw that I.T. And the O-line play as a unit for the whole game. I know it's pre-season. But theses are good things to see from the lions.
Jemele Hill (1:13 PM)
The Lions went 4-0 in the preseason last year and the regular season didn't turn out so well.All kidding aside, the Lions quietly had a good offseason. They had some significant defensive upgrades, particularly at LB with Peterson and Foote. The way it looks on paper, Detroit should be far from the worst team in the league.
How do you think bolt is shattering records the right way?
Jemele Hill (1:16 PM)
I've given some thought to this and had to be real with myself: Do I really care?I'd like to think it was clean, but I don't know that for sure. I believe in fairness and ethics in sports, so I'm going to say that if Usain Bolt isn't clean, it would put a damper on things.But I have to say...he might be the most electrifying athlete in sports.
If Christine "Cyborg" Santos demands your lunch money, do you hand it over?
Jemele Hill (1:16 PM)
Lunch money? I'm giving up my 401K.
Kwame Kilpatrick (Texas)
Does Detroit have any cash leftover to have the World Series?
Jemele Hill (1:17 PM)
I thought of about 30 inappropriate jokes when I saw this, but I like my job.
Should white people be called European-Americans if their ancestors are from Europe?
Jemele Hill (1:17 PM)
These are my chatters...
My biggest issue with the Vick haters is that there has to be better ways to spend their time and money. Constant protests and boycotts? 3 Billboards outside the stadium? Seriously? If these people were about saving animals one would think they'd have better ways to spend their time and money than creating and giving all this attention to a "villain".
Jemele Hill (1:20 PM)
Can I just say that I find it ironic that some Philly fans are lecturing Vick about character when they cheered when Michael Vick suffered a serious injury and a fan was killed out of Citizens Park a couple weeks ago?Anyway, if PETA really wants to help animals, they would have reached out to Vick like the humane society and asked him to educate others on dog fighting. PETA doesn't care about solutions, they just care about making noise.
Isn't it a bit presumptuous for you or anyone else to claim that an individual that hasn't broken any law should step down for moral reasons. I'm not a big fan of Pitino, nor am I surprised by his most recent publicized indiscretion, but who are you to judge? The man excels at getting college players where they want to go...the pros. The other aspects of his life are between him, his family, and his university.
Jemele Hill (1:21 PM)
Well, his indiscretion intruded on all of our lives the minute the romp turned into a $10 million extortion plot. That's sloppy.
J.B. (Dunmore, PA)
If you were in court for dumping a beer on a center fielder, would you use insanity as your defense? Who in their right mind just dumps a $10 beer on someone's head?
Jemele Hill (1:22 PM)
That guy needs to be prosecuted just for that. That dude is lucky Shane Victorino wasn't Ron Artest.
Adam R (Connecticut)
If you were in charge of a news station, would you send any cameras to the next Brett Favre Retirement Day?
Jemele Hill (1:23 PM)
Couldn't help but notice you picking Boston to go to the World Series. Do you think they can come back and win the Wild Card? It looks like it would be pretty hard to catch up to the Yankees right now..
Jemele Hill (1:24 PM)
It doesn't look great for them, but the Yankees have a pretty tough schedule down the stretch. I'm thinking the BoSox may get a boost from the return of Dice K and Wakefield.
Scores Man (NYC)
Does True Blood have top priority on your DVR? Please give your thoughts on its awesomness
Jemele Hill (1:26 PM)
OK, I have to be honest: I haven't watched one episode of True Blood. Waiting to start from the beginning with DVDs. Don't stone me.
I missed the first week of preseason games because I was on my honeymoon, does that make me a bad fan?
Jemele Hill (1:27 PM)
Bad fan, good husband. The latter is a bit more important.
Jemele Hill (1:27 PM)
Getting back to TV, I am a huge fan of Entourage. The fellas need to call an intervention for E, because that is a pimp in distress.
Hey Steve Nash didn't get one good line on entourage last night. and the man's funny.
Jemele Hill (1:29 PM)
Brady had a pretty strong appearance last week. Also thought they under-utilized Nash.
Jemele Hill (1:29 PM)