- Oops!Something went wrong.Please try again later.
Jalen Johnson’s departure from Duke and a school faculty member who took issue with the national media’s response to it led outspoken ESPN basketball commentator Dan Dakich to silence himself on Twitter amid his uncertain employment status.
Nathan Kalman-Lamb, a lecturing fellow at Duke’s Thompson Writing Program, told the News & Observer on Monday morning he’s faced a “steady stream of trolling on Twitter” since he called out Dakich and other national media members on Feb. 23 for their stances on Johnson leaving Duke’s basketball program in mid-February to prepare for the NBA Draft.
Dakich and Kalman-Lamb went back and forth on Twitter before Dakich criticized Kalman-Lamb, as well as other college professors who questioned college athlete compensation, on his sports radio show on WFNI in Indianapolis.
Then, in what Kalman-Lamb considered doxing, Dakich called him a ‘d-bag’ on air, spelled out his name, listed his office hours and insulted his appearance. Doxing is publishing private or identifying information about someone on the internet, typically with malicious intent.
Kalman-Lamb told the N&O that the extent of the backlash he’s felt has been Twitter trolling and hateful email from Dakich’s supporters criticizing his physical appearance.
“Nothing beyond that, I am happy to report,” Kalman-Lamb said in an email to the N&O.
A short time later he received an email criticizing his appearance.
Kalman-Lamb’s teaching interests include the intersection of sport, labor, race and social inequality.
Dakich’s Twitter feed was shut down over the weekend and ESPN could take further action against him.
“We are taking this matter very seriously and are in the process of looking into it,” ESPN spokeswoman Anna Negron said in a statement.
In addition to his interactions with Kalman-Lamb, Dakich also took aim at Ursinus College assistant history professor Johanna Mellis, who was a collegiate swimmer at College of Charleston.
Mellis and Kalman-Lamb co-host a podcast called “The End of Sport,” which they describe as `a podcast on capitalist sport, labor, and justice for end times.’
Mellis, on her Twitter back and forth with Dakich, said “let’s go at it in the pool” in reference to her athletic career.
Mellis took that comment as a threat.
“I’m shaken up that #Dakich implied he would sexually assault me in the pool to his 150k followers,” Mellis wrote on Twitter on Saturday.
In a later Tweet she added, “I’m not sure how to take that — it’s either referencing a physical attack or a sexual one, and neither is acceptable.”
She also wrote that Dakich was “purposefully siccing his fanboys to attack us.”
The Twitter trolling Kalman-Lamb reported followed, as did the email about his appearance.
Dakich, a former college basketball player at Indiana who later was an assistant coach there and a head coach at Bowling Green, is known for his outspoken opinions. WFNI previously suspended him in October 2019 for a “failure to adhere to the journalistic principles.”
Johnson, a 6-foot-9 freshman forward, announced Feb. 15 he was ending his college career to focus on NBA Draft preparation. He’s projected as a first-round pick. Johnson played 13 games for Duke this season, starting eight, while missing all of three games and most of another with a foot injury.
Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski and several Duke players have publicly supported Johnson’s decision.
Johnson remained listed on Duke’s roster until last week when he withdrew from school.