ESPN Will Not Televise the National Anthem During NFL Broadcasts

Carla Harmon
August 18, 2018

On Friday, ESPN president Jimmy Pitaro confirmed that the network will not be including the national anthem as part of its coverage before "Monday Night Football" games in 2018.

President Jimmy Pitaro shared the news with reporters at a media event at the company's campus in Bristol, Connecticut.

The network now shows regular season games for Monday Night Football, a wild-card round and the Pro-Bowl. The protests were started by former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick during the 2016-2017 National Football League season in opposition to police brutality.

The NFL made the anthem a point of interest during the offseason, but that hasn't curbed any protests. ESPN President Jimmy Pitaro told reporters today that could change re: news but per Fischer: ESPN communicated that plan to the National Football League "as courtesy and good partners". Then-presidential candidate Donald Trump capitalized on the ensuing firestorm and has railed against the protests ever since.

'It's not our job to cover politics, purely, but we'll cover the intersection of sports & politics, ' he said. We have communicated that back to the NFL. "When something happens, when Eagles are disinvited from White House, when someone takes a knee, if we think newsworthy were going to cover it".

He further clarified that ESPN was not a political organization but assured that politics would be covered as they pertained to sports.

While some may view this decision as ESPN dodging the controversy surrounding the anthem issue, it's important to note that it wasn't that long ago when none of the networks showed the anthem.

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