Skip Bayless is no stranger to criticism. The FS1 analyst has been ripped for some very dumb takes throughout his career, but the majority of the pushback has typically come from outside the TV studio.
During Wednesday’s edition of “Undisputed,” host Jenny Taft took exception to some comments from her colleague. It started when Bayless and Shannon Sharpe were discussing the debut episode this year of “Hard Knocks,” the HBO series offering a behind-the-scenes look at the Cowboys’ training camp. Bayless and Sharpe were both left unimpressed by Dallas coach Mike McCarthy’s attempt to motivate his team, but Bayless also threw in an unnecessary note about McCarthy’s weight.
“This is just personal preference on my part. I’m not taking a shot at him about this, but he’s a little heavy,” Bayless said. “I wouldn’t want my head coach in the National Football League to not look the part at all because you’ve got to stay in some semblance of condition to show that you know who you are. You have some confidence in yourself, right?”
Taft expressed her frustration before throwing to commercial break, leading to an intense exchange:
Taft: “Criticizing his appearance? I don’t know if I think that is a fair shot for Mike McCarthy. I’m gonna leave it at that.”
Bayless: “Thanks, Jenny. I appreciate that.”
Taft: “I don’t think it is a fair shot.”
Bayless: “Yeah, well, I don’t think that’s a fair shot.”
Taft: “Is everyone who is a good coach as fit as you, Skip? I don’t think that’s a fair shot whatsoever.”
Bayless: “I said it was a personal preference, and I wouldn’t want him to be my head coach.”
Taft: “I’ve actually had plenty of coaches that have not had the perfect, ideal physique, including my college coach. So, I don’t think that’s a fair shot. … And I’m allowed to have an opinion, Skip. I am allowed to say whatever I want to say on this show, as you do, too.”
That video clip quickly spread around Twitter and found its way to Cari Champion, who worked with Bayless on ESPN’s “First Take” from 2012-15. She is one of the few people who knows exactly how it feels to sit in Taft’s chair.
This is the second time in the past year that Bayless has come under fire for his opinion on a key figure in the Cowboys organization. Back in September, the 69-year-old declared that he had “no sympathy” for Dak Prescott after the Dallas quarterback opened up about his mental health issues. Bayless didn’t apologize for those comments, so “Undisputed” viewers probably shouldn’t expect to see Bayless offer a genuine apology to McCarthy.