Gary Danielson of CBS Sports spent nearly two decades playing college and pro football – so he’s well aware of the potential consequences of taking a brutal hit on the gridiron.
But Danielson startled and angered many viewers Saturday with his reactions after a photographer got slammed to the turf on the sidelines of the Georgia-Auburn game, for which Danielson was providing commentary.
PHOTOGRAPHER HOSPITALIZED AFTER TAKING BRUTAL HIT DURING GEORGIA-AUBURN GAME
It happened during the second quarter, with Georgia leading 7-0 in the game, played at Jordan-Hare Stadium in Auburn, Ala.
After Georgia running back Brian Herrien ran out of bounds on a play, chased by Auburn linebacker K.J. Britt, Herrien accidentally knocked over the photographer, later identified as Chamberlain Smith from the University of Georgia, who immediately fell over and lost consciousness.
While play was stopped as medical staff and others assisted the woman, Danielson was heard chuckling at the play, and seeming more concerned about the players than the injured woman.
“Britt gets up, he’s fine. Herrien’s fine,” Danielson says at one point.
“The person Herrien ran into is not,” his broadcast partner Brad Nessler points out.
“Heh, heh, is not,” Danielson adds, chuckling.
Later, Danielson, 68, who played college ball at Purdue and later played in the NFL for the Detroit Lions and Cleveland Browns, speculates the woman may have been snapping photos at the time and unaware Herrien was headed toward her. Some of social media commented that the remark seemed inappropriate, as if Danielson were blaming the woman.
Generally, social media posts suggested most viewers saw no humor in the situation — with some remarking that even Nessler seemed annoyed at Danielson’s comments.
CBS Sports even tweeted “whoops” when the Auburn bench fell over, sending some players falling over backward.
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Later, Jamie Erdahl Buckman of CBS Sports posted “good news” on Twitter, that photgrapher Smith was expected to be released from the hospital later in the evening.