Today ESPN and sports fans lost an icon, Stuart Scott lost his battle with cancer. Scott started his career at ESPN back in 1993 on ESPN2 on its SportsNight show and quickly made his mark on the network. It was not long after that he made his presence known on ESPN’s SportsCenter and beyond in interviews with several superstar athletes. Scott also hosted ESPN’s Monday Night Countdown for awhile before he was replaced by Chris Boomer (probably because it was too much to do with cancer, kids, and so on).
Stuart Scott made ESPN’s SportsCenter what it became, his personality was the most approachable on the network, he had swagger before the term was coined. Whoever coined the term should have been thinking of Stuart Scott because he just had that way to him, he carried himself with confidence and pride.
And while I may have bashed ESPN in a few of my posts in the past, none of those bashing’s were directed at him. How could they be? First of all he was battling cancer, and there is no way I would ever bash someone who is in the biggest fight of their lives. And secondly as a viewer I enjoyed watching him do his job. He made it look like a lot of fun, and it sort reminds me of the saying, if you love what you do then it doesn’t feel like a job. As a viewer of ESPN for as long as I’ve been, I bet you he never had a bad day at work when he was on the air. At least he never let it seem that way. My issue with ESPN is not related to him at all, in fact he was one reason I still tuned in even though the way ESPN runs its programs drive me wild sometimes. But this isn’t about that, this is about a man who exemplifies true professionalism.
Stuart Scott is really just one of the best personalities ESPN has ever had, I keep saying this but it’s true. He provided flare and fun into a sports highlights show like never before done. Stuart came off as real, he came off as someone who you could relate to even though you’ve never met the man, his on the screen personality helped you connect with him, even if you did not meet him once in your life.
Stuart Scott has left his mark on television, and we as sports fans need to remember him for that. Even those who might have disliked him probably can’t say anything bad about him. Stuart Scott just seemed to live a model life, on the air and off the air with his wife and daughters. Stuart Scott just sounds like the perfect man that a lot of men should attempt to be like. He had numerous positive traits we can take and run with them in our lives. He had confidence, he had poise, he was a warrior while he battled cancer on the air and off the air, and he was himself throughout his life.
I never had the chance to meet Stuart Scott, but I know if I did I’d never forget it because this man probably could have given me some pointers on the profession of journalism, and above all, pointers on life in general.
I cannot say enough good words for a man who took sports media up a notch, his way was fun to watch and it came off as real. Stuart Scott left an impact on ESPN and all of sports media. And for that I will be forever grateful.
Below is a tribute video ESPN released in memory of Stuart Scott.
And this is Scott’s ESPY’s speech from this past July, it was probably one of the most impactful things Scott ever had to say: