Charissa Thompson became the number one topic of conversation throughout sports media this week when during an appearance on Pardon My Take, she admitted to making up reports while working as an NFL sideline reporter earlier in her career.
On Friday morning, Thompson responded to the backlash and clarified her statements in a post on her personal Instagram account.
“I have a responsibility to myself and my employers to clarify what is being reported,” Thompson wrote.
Thompson added she simply used observations from the action to report what adjustments she expected while broadcasting games.
“I have never lied about anything or been unethical during my time as a sports broadcaster,” she added.
A previous discussion with Erin Andrews on their Calm Down podcast wandered closer to Thompson’s clarification here. In that podcast episode, the two explained how they might paraphrase or mark up a coach’s comments in order to keep a broadcast moving or even make a coach look better.
On Pardon My Take, Thompson went further. The Amazon and Fox NFL anchor doubled down on the language of “making up” reports and specified she would do so when a coach was unavailable.
While her Instagram post on Friday helpfully emphasizes that she did not ever attribute her observations as quotes from players or coaches, it does little to detail what she meant on Calm Down or Pardon My Take. The issue may simply be the loose atmosphere of a podcast and poor word choice, but Thompson’s social media statement certainly does not answer all the questions her initial comments posed.
When asked for a comment yesterday, Amazon only said in a statement to sports business writer Daniel Kaplan, “She was telling a story from 15 years ago.”
Look for Thompson to potentially address the situation on the next Calm Down episode. And expect more commentary on the whole saga before it’s over.