Not to be confused with The Cure’s lead singer, former Ohio State and Minnesota Vikings running back Robert Smith has announced that he’s leaving ESPN, his TV home for the past eleven years:

As you can see, Smith broke the news of the departure on his own rather than have network sources or ESPN’s PR department leak it for him.

Smith was one of the more intelligent analysts who didn’t fall into the trap of the “narratives” that ESPN would often put forth. While others would troll fan bases (i.e., Mark May, Danny Kanell), Smith stayed above the fray.

Now the speculation begins on where he goes next. Would Smith remain in television? If so, a potential Fox/Big Ten Network combination might be in order. With his Ohio State ties, the Big Ten Network would be a very good fit and should parent network Fox get a piece of the B1G contract, working for the Fox Sports Media Group would be in Smith’s wheelhouse.

Smith was mostly a studio analyst for ESPN during his tenure at the Worldwide Leader and talk about both the NFL and college football, although he focused mostly on college in recent years.

He could do the college/pro combo for Fox and focus on college for the BTN. And in his Twitter bio, Smith has “Free agent” right at the beginning so he may be looking to take his talents to another TV outlet.

We shall see what his next move will be.

[Robert Smith]

About Ken Fang

Ken has been covering the sports media in earnest at his own site, Fang's Bites since May 2007 and at Awful Announcing since March 2013.

He provides a unique perspective having been an award-winning radio news reporter in Providence and having worked in local television.

Fang celebrates the four Boston Red Sox World Championships in the 21st Century, but continues to be a long-suffering Cleveland Browns fan.

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