Shannon Sharpe Leaves Fox Sports After Seven-Year Run
Shannon Sharpe, the NFL Hall of Famer-turned-talking head, has reached a contract buyout agreement with Fox Sports to end his seven-year run alongside Skip Bayless on Fox Sports 1’s « Skip and Shannon: Undisputed. » Sharpe’s final show is reportedly expected to be after the NBA Finals end in June. The development ends what had been a successful partnership for Fox Sports after it poached Bayless from ESPN’s « First Take » in 2016 and paired him with Sharpe, previously an NFL commentator for CBS.
The Highs and Lows of Sharpe and Bayless’ Partnership
Sharpe provided a different voice to counter Bayless in Fox’s own morning debate show. That partnership saw its highs and lows, though. As the Post noted, there was some very public friction between Sharpe and Bayless in the fallout of the Damar Hamlin incident, in which the Buffalo Bills safety went into cardiac arrest during a game in January and had to be defibrillated on the field, then taken to the hospital. Sharpe missed the following day’s « Undisputed » episode, then complained about Bayless’ tweet and bickered with the co-host after he interjected. Despite the ups and downs, Sharpe’s time with Fox has seen him make headlines beyond the Hamlin incident, such as an ugly run-in with the father of Ja Morant and the Memphis Grizzlies and a defamation lawsuit from Brett Favre over his reaction to allegations of welfare misconduct.
Sharpe’s Future After Fox
It’s unclear where Sharpe goes from here, though he probably won’t lack for options. Sharpe will also reportedly be taking his « Club Shay Shay » podcast with him from Fox Sports. With over 15 years of experience in the industry, Sharpe is a well-respected voice in sports media and will likely be sought after by other networks. As for Bayless, he remains on a four-year, $32 million contract he signed in March 2021. The departure of Sharpe marks the end of an era for « Skip and Shannon: Undisputed, » but it remains to be seen what the future holds for both Sharpe and the show.
Keywords: Shannon Sharpe, Fox Sports, Skip Bayless, « Skip and Shannon: Undisputed, » NBA Finals, Damar Hamlin, Ja Morant, Memphis Grizzlies, Brett Favre, welfare misconduct, Club Shay Shay, sports media.
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