Skip Bayless defends LeBron James from Draymond Green Credit: Fox Sports 1

Things just keep getting worse for Skip Bayless and Undisputed.

The new-look panel show has already struggled to keep pace while the rest of Fox Sports 1’s midday lineup surges, and now it is trending in the other direction entirely.

Last Thursday heading into the Sweet 16 of the NCAA tournaments and toward the NBA playoffs and NFL Draft, Undisputed averaged just 48,000 viewers during its mid-morning slot. That equals the smallest audience of any Undisputed broadcast since it returned from hiatus last September, per Jon Lewis of Sports Media Watch.

It was clear already that Fox had a problem on its hands when Bayless struggled to find a permanent cohost to replace Shannon Sharpe, and viewership lagged throughout the NFL season. But in the weeks since the Super Bowl, the situation has gone from bad to worse.

Given that Bayless is one of the network’s highest-paid talents and Undisputed now involves a tangle of several panelists and rotating voices, things are looking bleak. Sports networks don’t typically make significant changes until the dog days of the late summer, but it is hard to see Undisputed surviving the year in its current form.

Particularly with Bayless in the home stretch of his Fox contract and the rest of the FS1 lineup giving executives numerous solid options to pull from to rejigger the morning show, it hardly makes sense to keep giving Undisputed a lifeline.

The only remaining question about the First Take knockoff and bygone studio show anchor may now be: will anyone hear it fall?

[Sports Media Watch]

About Brendon Kleen

Brendon is a Media Commentary staff writer at Awful Announcing. He has also covered basketball and sports business at Front Office Sports, SB Nation, Uproxx and more.