Berry Tramel brought this week's hottest take.

Welcome to a post-Thanksgiving edition of This Week In Hot Takes! Here’s a look at the hottest takes from sports media figures from November 17-23.

5. Skip Bayless thinks Russell Wilson could have kicked a 52-yard field goal: There’s exaggeration for effect, and then there’s this:

Field goals from that far out are incredibly difficult for even NFL kickers, as we saw with Blair Walsh’s miss in that situation. But sure, Skip, sure.

Rating: ??

4. Stephen A. Smith calls Baker Mayfield and Lincoln Riley “too dramatic”: Stephen A. “THE WEED!”Smith should be the last person to say that anyone else is too dramatic, but that’s what he did this week. Following Oklahoma’s announcement that quarterback Baker Mayfield wouldn’t start on senior day against West Virginia and wouldn’t be a captain thanks to his crotch-grabbing antics against Kansas, Mayfield gave an emotional press conference about what being a captain meant to him. Sooners’ head coach Lincoln Riley also got emotional about Mayfield and his importance to the program. Naturally, Stephen A., a man known to lose his mind and go off on an unhinged rant at the slightest provocation, decided to say Mayfield and Riley were being “too dramatic”:

Look, Stephen A. knows bad acting given his own vast experience in that area, from First Take to General Hospital, but both Mayfield and Riley seemed pretty sincere with their comments, and it’s understandable why this punishment was significant to both. And Stephen A. accusing anyone else of being too dramatic is the height of hypocrisy.

Rating: ???

3. Michael Irvin says “Playing OL is as easy as anything”: One problem with the amount of quarterbacks and wide receivers employed as NFL analysts relative to other positions is that the challenges of those other positions can be overlooked or downplayed. Of course, smart analysts use their own playing experience as a starting point rather than the be-all end-all, and do their research and homework to be able to talk about other positions effectively. And then you have NFL Network’s Michael Irvin, who decided to insist that playing offensive line is “as easy as anything”:

Irvin rightly got called out by Packers’ tackle David Bakhtiari:

Rating: ????

2. Joe Morgan writes over-the-top dumb letter to Hall of Fame voters: Morgan, the Baseball Hall of Fame member as a player and long-time ABC, NBC and ESPN broadcaster who’s a candidate for the HOF’s Ford C. Frick Award this year, sent a mass e-mail with the help of the Hall to all voters this year with some very over-the-top language about steroid users:

The more we Hall of Famers talk about this – and we talk about it a lot – we realize we can no longer sit silent. Many of us have come to think that silence will be considered complicity. Or that fans might think we are ok if the standards of election to the Hall of Fame are relaxed, at least relaxed enough for steroid users to enter and become members of the most sacred place in Baseball. We don’t want fans ever to think that.

We hope the day never comes when known steroid users are voted into the Hall of Fame. They cheated. Steroid users don’t belong here.

Players who failed drug tests, admitted using steroids, or were identified as users in Major League Baseball’s investigation into steroid abuse, known as the Mitchell Report, should not get in. Those are the three criteria that many of the players and I think are right.

…By cheating, they put up huge numbers, and they made great players who didn’t cheat look smaller by comparison, taking away from their achievements and consideration for the Hall of Fame. That’s not right.

And that’s why I, and other Hall of Famers, feel so strongly about this.It’s gotten to the point where Hall of Famers are saying that if steroid users get in, they’ll no longer come to Cooperstown for Induction Ceremonies or other events. Some feel they can’t share a stage with players who did steroids. The cheating that tainted an era now risks tainting the Hall of Fame too. The Hall of Fame means too much to us to ever see that happen. If steroid users get in, it will divide and diminish the Hall, something we couldn’t bear.

…I care about how good a player was or what kind of numbers he put up; but if a player did steroids, his integrity is suspect; he lacks sportsmanship; his character is flawed; and, whatever contribution he made to his team is now dwarfed by his selfishness.

Morgan’s letter, like many arguments against voting for steroid users, conveniently ignores all the other cheating over the years by Hall of Fame members, from amphetamines to scuffed balls. And it conveniently ignores all the character issues those already in the Hall have. And it ignores the steroid users already in the Hall. But what’s particularly ridiculous is the way Morgan made this case, and the way the Hall allowed him to send this to all voters. Yahoo’s Jeff Passan wrote that this was the final straw that convinced him to give up his Hall of Fame ballot, and he makes valid points, especially when it comes to Morgan’s attacks on particular players:

And that’s the sad part of this all: There’s now an active campaign by the Hall against particular players. One Hall of Famer, who says he has the backing of plenty more, is smearing players on this year’s ballot to the group of people expected to render fair and reasoned judgments. That’s not guidance. It’s the Hall telling voters what it expects.

My ballot will arrive this week. I will not fill it out. I will not participate in this charade where the shepherds charged with telling the story of baseball want to avoid telling the ugly parts. I will not even though players like Edgar Martinez really could use my vote. Sorry, Edgar. Blame Joe Morgan’s sanctimony for this one.

It’s a pity that Fire Joe Morgan isn’t still around to give Morgan’s letter the treatment it deserves. (Mike Schur is probably a little busy working on The Good Place, although he might weigh in on a Poscast.) But this is one more reason to be thankful Morgan is no longer an active broadcaster.

Rating: ?????

1. Berry Tramel calls Baker Mayfield’s crotch grab “repugnant”: Oklahoman columnist Tramel has long been known for some hot takes, and boy, did he deliver this week, claiming the highest-possible horse of moral outrage over Mayfield’s actions.

Oklahoma’s quarterback embarrassed himself Saturday night in Lawrence, Kansas. Embarrassed himself, embarrassed his team, embarrassed his school, embarrassed his adopted state. Standing on the field, yelling obscenities and making obscene gestures, is not acceptable and Mayfield himself said so with his postgame apology.

But Mayfield apologies are wearing thin. Which is why it’s time for Lincoln Riley to show he’s serious about running a class program.

Mayfield must be suspended for the West Virginia game Saturday.

That’s a serious step. It would imperil Mayfield’s Heisman Trophy campaign, which was reaching landslide status in recent weeks. Even more, it would imperil OU’s College Football Playoff hopes.

…This isn’t planting a flag on Ohio Stadium’s midfield. That was harmless high jinks. This is repugnant behavior, and it doesn’t matter if it’s Jameis Winston in the Florida State student union or Baker Mayfield on the green grass of KU’s Memorial Stadium. When you’re ashamed to have your wife and kids walking through a commons or watching an OU football game, there’s a major problem.

Mayfield already has used his get-out-of-jail-free card. After his February arrest for public drunkenness in Fayetteville, Arkansas, complete with video, Mayfield’s discipline was kept in house.

Mayfield’s actions were a bit much, but arguing for a game’s suspension seems excessive. And why is Tramel worried about wives seeing a crotch grab? But calling this “repugnant behavior” is the real hot take. Insult comic Brain finds that repugnant:

Rating: ?????

Notable absences: Phil Mushnick, Colin Cowherd.

Hot Take Standings: 

Stephen A. Smith – 146
Skip Bayless – 120
Phil Mushnick – 97
Colin Cowherd – 43
Shannon Sharpe – 30
Rob Parker – 23
Doug Gottlieb – 22
Charles Barkley – 19
JT The Brick – 17
Albert Breer – 16
Don Cherry – 15
Ray Lewis – 14
Rick Morrissey – 13
Berry Tramel – 10
Kristine Leahy – 10
Chris Broussard – 10
Garth Crooks – 9
C.J. Nitkowski – 9
Bill Plaschke – 9
Michael Rapaport – 8
Tony Massarotti – 8
Jason McIntyre – 8
Bart Hubbuch – 8
Danny Kanell – 7
Dan Dakich – 7
Keith Olbermann – 6
Michael DeCourcy – 6
Luke Kerr-Dineen – 6
Terry Bradshaw – 6
Greg A. Bedard – 6
Joe Morgan – 5
Michael Felger – 5
Howard Eskin – 5
Nancy Armour – 5
Richard Justice – 5
John Middlekauff – 5
Bill Plaschke – 5
Ameer Hasan Loggins – 5
Jesse Watters – 5
Jeremy Roenick – 5
John McGrath – 5
Ross Tucker  – 5
Mike Sielski – 5
Gordon Monson – 5
Scott Fowler – 5
Bob Brookover – 5
Mike Bianchi – 5
Terry Frei – 5
David Jones – 5
Sabrina Parr – 5
Abbey Mastracco – 5
Terry Cushman – 5
Rob Rossi – 5
Rick Bozich – 5
Michael O’Doherty – 5
Simon Briggs – 5
Dan Wetzel – 5
Mike Parry – 5
Bob Ryan – 5
Robert Reed – 5
Pete Dougherty – 5
Dan Le Batard – 5
Marcus Hayes – 5
Kyle Turley – 5
Mike Ditka – 5
Erril Laborde – 5
Lowell Cohn – 5
Rosie DiManno – 5
Frank Isola – 5
Michael Irvin – 4
Ryen Russillo – 4
Shawn Windsor – 4
Brock Huard – 4
Byron Tau – 4
Maggie Gray  – 4
Michael Powell – 4
Mark Spector – 4
Chad Forbes – 4
Gary Myers – 4
Mark Schlereth – 4
Andy Gray – 4
David Fleming – 4
The Sporting News – 4
Jeff Pearlman – 4
Tony Grossi – 4
FanSided – 4
Cris Carter – 4
Kirk Herbstreit – 4
Tony Kornheiser – 4
Mike Felger – 4
USA Today op-eds – 4
Nathan Ruiz – 4
Mike Sheahan – 3
Bob Ford – 3
Dan Shaughnessy – 3
Steve Greenberg – 3
Matt Burke – 3
Malcolm Gladwell – 3
Mike Milbury – 3
Mac Engel – 3
Nick Kypreos – 3
Jason Smith – 3
Caron Butler – 3
Don Brennan – 3
Robert Tychkowski – 3
Mike Johnston – 3
Mike Francesa – 3
Jeff Mans – 3
Joe Browne – 3
Mike Harrington – 3
Greg Mitchell – 3
Seth Greenberg  – 2
Pat Forde – 2
Doug Smith  – 2
Newsweek – 2
Teddy Cutler – 2
Will Cain – 2
Bill Cowher – 2
Paul Finebaum – 2
Charley Casserly – 2
Amin Elhassan – 2
Jim Henneman – 2
Mitch Lawrence – 2
Nick Wright – 2
Domonique Foxworth – 2
Gary Parrish – 2
Michael Farber – 2
Andy Furman – 2
Donovan McNabb – 2
Seth Davis – 2
Jon Heyman – 2
Jason La Canfora – 2
Dan Wolken – 2
Booger McFarland – 2
Joe Schad – 2
Cork Gaines – 2

Thanks for reading! Tune in next week for more This Week In Hot Takes. As always, you can send submissions to me via e-mail or on Twitter.

About Andrew Bucholtz

Andrew Bucholtz has been covering sports media for Awful Announcing since 2012. He is also a staff writer for The Comeback. His previous work includes time at Yahoo! Sports Canada and Black Press.