If CBS announcers don’t want to say the arguably offensive name of the Washington NFL team, they don’t have to. If they want to, they can.
That’s the word from CBS Sports Chairman Sean McManus, who tells the Hollywood Reporter that although he hasn’t told his on-air talent what to say regarding the Redskins controversy, he trusts each individual announcer to make the right call.
“We haven’t talked to them yet,” McManus said. “Generally speaking, we do not tell our announcers what to say or not say. Up to this point, it has not been a big issue for us. Last year, it was simmering; now it’s reaching a hotter level. But we probably will not end up dictating to our announcers whether they say Redskins or don’t say Redskins. We leave that up to them and our production team. There are times when something becomes important enough that we talk to them, and between now and the start of football season we’ll decide what is the right thing to do.”
CBS is scheduled to air five Redskins games this season, and you can bet people on both sides of the issue will be listening closely to determine whether they’re refusing to say the team’s name, whether they’re continuing to say the team’s name, or whether they’re avoiding it other than when commenting directly on the controversy. Regardless, the fact that one NFL team has a name that some TV announcers will not say is another reminder that this controversy is not going away.