Is Fox Sports Commentator Skip Bayless Woke?

On Tuesday the controversial sports commentator took on Trent Dilfer’s comments about Colin Kaepernick’s protest.

Skip Bayless
Skip Bayless Fox Sports Screenshot

I know that the often controversial Skip Bayless generally doesn’t have enough decent, compassionate, thoughtful sports sound clips to fill a thimble. He’s often wrong about sports and often is just wrong in general. Who can forget the time Richard Sherman called him out and the time Jalen Rose blasted him for being, well, Skip Bayless?

I know that his boisterous-white-man bit is part of the reason Fox Sports stole him from ESPN, but when it comes to Colin Kaepernick and his right to protest, Bayless has been on the right side of history.

On Tuesday’s Undisputed with Shannon Sharpe, Bayless took aim at NFL Countdown host Trent Dilfer, who blasted Kaepernick’s protest as selfish and a disruption to his team, the San Francisco 49ers.

“He chose a time when, all of a sudden, he became the center of attention. And it has disrupted that organization. It has caused friction. It has torn at the fabric of the team,” Dilfer said. “Although I respect what he’s doing, and I respect the passion and burden he has for this issue, a massive issue, I do not respect the fact that he put himself and his stance above his team, because he’s not the only one that’s passionate about big social issues.”

Peep the vicious side-eye-heard-’round-the-world from co-host Randy Moss:

Bayless had this to say about the onetime quarterback’s remarks:

Let’s get back to Trent Dilfer. That was typical old-school quarterback mentality that you just spoke of. That was so typical. Dispassionate. Disconnected to the point of being clueless. Sort of ex-white-quarterback mentality. This is how you do it. You should be thankful and you should be honored to be in the NFL quarterback fraternity. So if you’re a starter, you can speak out a little more. But if you’re a backup, to use your line again, and it’s my favorite line, you are to be seen and not heard. You are to prepare for the game and be ready to play in case of. And you are to remain in the shadows so as not to distract or disturb or wreck your team unity. … Obviously, I’m not black. But this is one thing I do know after years and years of working with a lot of black players and black commentators on many networks: That if you go to the place of you’re telling a black man, or a black woman, that ‘You should know your place and stay in it,’ when you get to there, them’s fighting words. That smacks of plantation mentality. You cannot go there—and he went there. Because no matter what you’re trying to say in the football context, we’re not in the football context any more. We have risen above it to an issue that is far more important than any football game.

Watch the whole thing, because Shannon Sharpe nails the complexities of being a black athlete in a country that doesn’t respect black people’s rights. Bayless’ part starts around the four-minute mark.

I’m not saying that Bayless is fully in his Malcolm X bag, but on this one topic, he’s starting to sound like he’s jive-woke to me.

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