Skip Bayless and Stephen A. Smith are rewriting the history of First Take and their relationship in real time. The latest disagreement is over the murky time around 2013 when the show was put on “probation” by ESPN.
Smith believes part of the reason the hosts were in hot water with their bosses was because of Bayless’ incessant coverage of quarterback Tim Tebow. Naturally, Bayless disagrees.
“There was no shtick involved in all those shows we did on Tim Tebow,” Bayless said on the latest episode of The Skip Bayless Show.
Bayless also took issue with Smith calling the Tebow stanning a “caricature.”
“Come on, Stephen A. Did you read three people on Twitter call me a caricature?” Bayless retorted.
The 71-year-old sports TV veteran then called out his former cohost for his own on-air antics. Bayless pointed out that despite covering Tebow, who he calls a “force of nature” in the clip above, he has never worn a Broncos jersey on-air or ridden into the studio on an actual bronco.
But as recently as 2021 when Tebow was in Jaguars camp as a tight end, Bayless was still frequently tweeting about his muse.
I see Tebow is getting ridiculed for … a block??? The 3rd-string DE he was supposed to take out with a wham block crashed down, completing misplaying a run to his left. He was so out of position that Tebow needed only to chip him. The runner broke free. TEBOW DID HIS JOB.
— Skip Bayless (@RealSkipBayless) August 15, 2021
This Smith-Bayless feud feels clearly drummed up for content. But Bayless truly seems unable to confront reality. Tebow love, just like LeBron James hate, fueled Bayless’ career.
Does Bayless believe it is better for him if he genuinely spent hours over the years stanning a QB who peaked in 2009?
Maybe Bayless wants to retroactively reclaim his own success and show how it was just his own talent that drove ratings all along. That just doesn’t stack up to the facts. Bayless just finished a hiatus from Fox because ratings were lagging for Undisputed and the show couldn’t find a cohost after Shannon Sharpe’s exit.
Right away, James and the Los Angeles Lakers were back on the topic rundown. Maybe it will be Tebow next week.