[video] CBS Should Fire NFL Reporter After Olbermann's Epic Takedown

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Last week, on his new ESPN show, Keith Olbermann proved why it's absolutely necessary for him to hold a high-profile position in sports media. He brings a thoughtfulness and intellect that just doesn't exist outside of anomalies such as Bob Costas and HBO's "Real Sports."

I read Pete Prisco's "article" at the CBS ( CBS) Sports Website.

First, pro that he is, Olbermann didn't leave anything meaningful out. It wasn't like he scalped excerpts to suit his monologue, omitting key context. In fact, he basically ran through the entire thing, strategically, but cleverly inserting the necessary particulars Prisco left out.

Second, pro that he is, Olbermann decided against mocking Prisco or calling him names. Honestly, it's difficult for me to resist falling victim to an ad hominem against this guy, but, I'll take a cue from Olbermann and avoid crude attempts to determine what could have possibly compelled Prisco to produce such a heartless hack piece of gerbilism.

As a CBSSports.com commenter noted, "the worst part of this article is that Prisco has a point and it's lost among all the ridiculous stuff." While I'm not certain Prisco buried even a semi-intelligent thesis, there's no question somebody else somewhere -- somebody other than Prisco -- could have made an excellent case against the NFL's concussion settlement.

A good buddy of mine sent me an email over the weekend.

We don't see eye-to-eye on his criticism of Olbermann ...
Olberman used two classic liberal attack approaches (i use liberal for severe lack of a better word).  One, he failed to acknowledge the obvious hyperbole in Prisco's comments and attacked him as if it was said straight. Second, he spends most of the segment telling anecdotal sob stories to build up a mountain of sympathy for the players (who do deserve it) and he then transfers that sympathy to his agenda and to further inflate his bubble of superiority of bogus righteousness.

However, I might be able to get on the same page as him regarding the National Football League's ineptitude:
I would chide the NFL much more for having to be sued to effectuate change ... Football players of all levels would be best served with real money for research, ongoing care and prevention. I am not talking about the token joke in this settlement. So a current set of players get paid, there is a pittance for the future and the NFL gets it waivers and admits no fault. A paltry $85 mil for study and prevention is a travesty and further evidence that the players in the suit were not trying do much beyond help themselves. Again, yes, help they need, but there is more to the struggle.

Fair enough. I don't know enough about the situation to completely agree or disagree, but at least my friend makes legitimate points. He goes on to note that the NFL opens itself up to long-term risk, particularly if its feeder programs drop football because of lack of support from the league and subsequent liability risk. What will happen to the talent pipeline that feeds today's multi-billion sports and entertainment obsession?

But we part ways when my friend says "We needed more out of this deal, which was Prisco's comment." No, this wasn't Prisco's comment. And, if it actually was, CBS should fire him, not for being an insensitive and ignorant ass (I caved), but for being an abject failure as a storyteller.

As a journalist myself, I look back on some of the stuff I did when I worked in sports radio with disgust. For example, the second after Florence Griffith-Joyner died, I was on the air making jokes that, when I listen to the tape now, make me cringe. I was wrong. Out of line. Immature. Making futile efforts to create a name for myself as the second coming of Howard Stern.

If I didn't understand the process of growing up, I would be nothing but embarrassed and ashamed by those days.

As emotionally tragic as it might be to reflect, some of us need to go to that sort of demented and inhuman extreme before we come to the realization that were not talking or writing about the surreal. Junior Seau firing a shotgun into his chest isn't some prop, a convenient foil that eventually facilitates a segue for somebody like Prisco to produce snuff porn.

If Pete Prisco has a conscience, he's spending his spare time as an emotional wreck while he figures out how to explain his actions to his children, if, by some unfortunate stroke of fate, he has any.

But, based on his weekend Tweets, he reacting like I would have, 15 years ago, when I was 22.

He's being defensive. He's deflecting. He's assigning blame to others for issues that, while related, have nothing to do with his ill-advised column or Olbermann's critique.

And he's busy telling us not to worry about Tim Tebow's well-being.

Of course, because like the people who will receive settlement money from the NFL, Tebow is rich. And he knew when he got into the game that it might not last.

That's what it's all about. Anything and everything material that doesn't require the eye of a medical doctor to tease out from something complicated, but concrete.

Human emotion, response to trauma or perceived failure -- these things just don't register with Prisco.

Some people never grow up. They just grow old and eventually bitter.

-- Written by Rocco Pendola in Santa Monica, Calif.

Rocco Pendola is a columnist and TheStreet's Director of Social Media. Pendola makes frequent appearances on national television networks such as CNN and CNBC as well as TheStreet TV. Whenever possible, Pendola uses hockey, Springsteen or Southern California references in his work. He lives in Santa Monica.

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