ESPN Names New President After John Skipper’s Bizarre Departure

(Photo by Mike Windle/Getty Images for ESPN)

Jena Greene Reporter
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ESPN has officially named a new president after John Skipper’s announced he would be stepping down in December.

Former Chairman of Consumer Products at both Disney and Interactive Media James Pitaro will take over as the new head of ESPN. The announcement went public on Monday after speculation had been growing that ESPN might actually be considering somebody outside the company.

Skipper’s resignation came as a surprise to many. Even though ESPN’s popularity has been plummeting in recent months due to its increasing politicization, Skipper was well liked both in and outside of the network. Many were skeptical about the real reason he resigned, as plenty of professionals high on the corporate ladder have struggled with substance abuse and dealt with the issue privately instead while maintaining their post. It seems that Skipper might have acted as a scapegoat and taken the fall for ESPN as public scrutiny mounts against the network.

While James Pitaro isn’t exactly an ESPN insider, he did run Yahoo! Sports before making the transition over to Disney. On paper, Pitaro seems like a great fit for the job. But it doesn’t matter how qualified you are, resurrecting the ESPN brand is going to be an uphill battle. You could be the greatest businessman and sports journalist in the world. Unless you’re either the most popular man in the world who’s willing to eliminate a ton of controversial staff or a literal magician, the odds aren’t looking great for your future reputation.

Best of luck to our buddy James in his future endeavor, and may his career rest in peace.

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