David Pollack is sort of a douche.
This realization didn’t come upon me immediately after first seeing him on ESPN. Instead, watching him on the flagship program College GameDay week after week as an analyst, he vexed me. Then he annoyed me. He finally just angered me. I am now of the full opinion against his existence on my Saturday morning television programs.
If you’re not familiar with Pollack, he is a former University of Georgia linebacker who played for two years in the NFL with the Cincinnati Bengals before a neck injury in his second game of his second season ended his professional career. Now he’s a college football analyst, and truthfully, he’s not horrible when it comes to breaking down teams, schemes, and football in general. Where he is the worst is just as a person, a human being, a symbol of awareness for others.
One could make this argument that other talking heads from the sports world need to go: Tim Tebow, Stephen A. Smith, Jesse Palmer, Paul Finebaum, Colin Cowherd, or, biggest asshole of all assholes, Clay Travis, and most people wouldn’t disagree. (Full disclosure: I think that Stephen A. Smith and Paul Finebaum are quality, and I have no solidified opinion on Cowherd.) However, it’s Pollack who is a picture of a few larger issues. His prominent role on the most-watched college football show allows him to get the most airtime of any of the more problematic personalities.
First and most importantly, he’s espoused a clearly misogynist viewpoint on the air. The infamous 2013 implication was that women should not be on the College Football Playoff Committee. While he tried to walk it back, he never said that he was wrong, instead tweeting that he only wanted people who “eat, sleep, and breathe college football.” There just wasn’t the full acknowledgment that women could easily know as much about football and be on the playoff committee. Not a good look, Dave.
He epitomizes a larger “bro culture” mentality issue all too prevalent in sports since its existence with Pollack often resorting to senselessly angry rhetoric when given a chance. “If you told me I would be part of the ‘media,'” he said this year in a particularly Trumpian sentence beginning, “I would’ve slapped you upside the head.” This season on GameDay when interviewing the Undertaker Mark Calloway (yes, that Undertaker), Pollack asked apropos of absolutely nothing, “What would you do if I slapped you right now?” to end the segment. Cool, dude.
He himself has even admitted that he’s “loud,” “obnoxious,” and “opinionated,” with only one of those being a true requirement for his job. (Look no further than the reasoned temperaments of Reece Davis and Kirk Herbstreit on how it’s done sans machismo.) Pollack is such a meathead that he doesn’t understand how a tie works in ranking teams, asking “Who’s [number] four then?” when Georgia and Ohio State both landed at number three this week. A real member of the intelligentsia, that guy.
It bothers me, too, that he doesn’t understand how the spreads of football games operate. Shouldn’t you at least know a little about how the odds work you’re asked to comment on?
Lastly, his diet is stupid. He’s an extreme health nut, and no one likes those guys. We’ve seen them in the gym and had to endure their perpetual comments about how much they lift. I’ve said before, I don’t trust anyone who won’t eat a donut.
Yes, some of this is only in jest to poke fun at a successful, rich, white dude who can handle the jabs. And I’m aware that he’s done and said some good things in his life, like his company FanBan raising money for YMCA, his stance on getting an education while being in college, and his helping of Marcus Spears get healthy. He’s been on the right side of some issues, sure. But when he’s on the wrong side of matters, he’s blatantly wrong.
I’m not calling for the guy to live under a bridge. I’m just asking if he can join Fox Sports and discuss shit with Urban Meyer where no one has to see him and he can still earn his wonderful living for being loud, obnoxious, and opinionated.