Traina Thoughts: ESPN 'College GameDay' Sign Leads to Complete Madness

Jimmy Traina
Sports Illustrated

1. One College GameDay sign has led to numerous mind-boggling moments.

A quick recap: A couple of weeks ago, former Iowa State student Carson King asked people to Venmo him money for beer via a sign he held up during ESPN's college football pregame show. For some reason so many people sent King money that he was able to turn the entire thing into a fundraising campaign for a children's hospital. When all was said and done, the 24-year-old ended up donating more than $1 million to the University of Iowa Stead Family Children's Hospital.

But thanks to the batsh*t crazy times we live in, a reporter from the Des Moines Register dug up racist and offensive tweets King had sent eight years prior when he was 16. Anheuser-Busch, who partnered with King to match donations, then announced it was cutting ties with King and even took back its offer of supplying him with free beer for a year.

At this point, the story is ridiculous enough, but we've got one more big twist. It turned out that the Des Moines Register reporter, Aaron Calvin, who dug up King's old tweets had ... wait for it ... wait for it ... wait for it... racist and offensive tweets of his own.

Thursday night, the paper announced it had fired Calvin.

There are so many layers to this and so many lessons to be learned, but we know that will never happen. Yes, 16 year olds are still kids, but they should know better than to tweet racist garbage. Reporters should use better judgement about digging up old tweets on people. Companies need to stop responding to the reaction of Twitter, which is completely insignificant in the grand scheme of the world. And people in management need to stop firing people so freely. Yes, the reporter screwed up, but he has editors. And those editors still have their job. How is that fair?

Every consequence now has to be extreme. Every reaction has to be over the top. Every problem has to get over-corrected. There is no middle ground. We've gotten to the point where it's all or nothing.

What an embarrassing time we live in right now.

2. Now for fun stuff. Winnipeg Jets forward Mark Letestu was caught on the bench during a preseason game Thursday night casually downing some mustard.

Of course, when we saw the video of Letestu, we thought of one thing and one thing only.

3. Am I a bad person because this will now make me root against the Astros in the postseason?

4. We told you Thursday that you can actually bet on whether a sex toy will be thrown on the field in Buffalo on Sunday when the Bills host the Patriots. This doesn't seem to be going over well with the Bills' front office, but it made matters worse by giving us this outstanding quote.

5. If the Brewers are looking for the Cubs to go all out against the Cardinals this weekend with playoff seeding on the line, they're going to be very disappointed and Chicago skipper Joe Maddon doesn't care.

6. This week's SI Media Podcast features two interviews. First up is John Ourand from Sports Business Journal who discusses various sports media news stories including the increases in NFL pregame show ratings, FOX's new college football pregame show and Tony Romo's contract status with CBS. Then, Matthew Berry from ESPN joins the podcast to talk about what it's like to cover fantasy sports for a living.

You can listen to the podcast below or download it on Apple, Spotify and Stitcher.

7. RANDOM YOUTUBE VIDEO OF THE DAY: Thanks to a conversation with my boss, Mark McClusky, I was reminded of one of my all-time favorite Chris Jericho moments, his famous "1,004 holds" promo. Just genius work here.

Be sure to catch up on past editions of Traina Thoughts and check out the Sports Illustrated Media Podcast hosted by Jimmy Traina on iTunes, Spotify or Google Play. You can also follow Jimmy on Twitter and Instagram.

IN CLOSING: Best bets for Sunday: Bills +7, Broncos -3, Chiefs -6.5.

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