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ESPN Announcer Hit With Backlash After Calling Death Of LSU Coach’s Daughter-In-Law A ‘Distraction’


The first games of the college football playoffs were held on Sunday, December 29. Sadly, as Louisiana State University prepared to face off against Oklahoma State, tragedy struck.

A small plane flying in to watch the game crashed, killing five of its six passengers and critically wounding the sixth.

Tragically, among the casualties was Carly McCord, a 30-year-old sports reporter and daughter-in-law of LSU’s offensive coordinator, Steve Ensminger.

As the story broke live during pre-game coverage, ESPN announcer Matt Barrie addressed the situation in a way that garnered him widespread criticism on social media.

As the camera showed an image of Ensminger, who chose to stay and coach the Tigers to victory, Barrie referred to “the distraction of losing his daughter-in-law.”

Videos of Barrie’s comment quickly went viral, with many calling out his choice of words as inappropriate.

Others, however, defended Barrie, saying his improvised statement was understandable.

Meanwhile, Barrie continued to receive backlash for trivializing McCord’s death.

There were definitely things Barrie could have said to avoid this online criticism. 

Barrie probably meant to show respect and likely wishes he could take back his words right now.

Condolences to McCord’s entire family, who are surely working through a very difficult time. 


Written by Collin Gossel

Collin Gossel is a writer and comedian living in Brooklyn, New York, but there are nights when he looks up at the stars and wistfully thinks to himself “there’s got to be more out there…” You can catch Collin improvising new musicals every Tuesday night at the Magnet Theater’s Musical Megawatt, or follow his unfiltered thoughts on Twitter and Instagram @CollinGossel.--