As you may or may not know, Pittsburgh Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger has been sued for sexual harassment. A casino employee claims in the suit that Roethlisberger asked her to his room to "fix her TV." He then allegedly assaulted her and forced her to have sex with him. Now, according to the link, there have been no criminal charges filed. But, despite no charges, when a Super Bowl winning QB is sued for (essentially) raping someone, that's news. I can guarantee you if Tom Brady or Peyton Manning had been sued for something similar, it would be serious news.
However, despite this rather important news story, ESPN has made absolutely no mention of it on the their website, on ESPN News, or on Sports Center. Nothing. Nada. Zilch. Like Vanilla Ice's career, it seems it isn't worth discussing.
Perhaps their reasons for not mentioning the story has to do with the lack of criminal charges. No one has been arrested; no one convicted of anything. It is, essentially, a she said, he said case.
It's a pathetic reason, but at least it is something.
Now, I'd like you to think back with me. Think back to another incident that involved another high profile NFL player last year at (roughly) the same time. Like this Ben Roethlisberger case, this other case had no criminal charges filed. No one was convicted. It was, in essence, a he said, he said case.
However, the main difference between that case and Roethlisberger's case is ESPN was all over last year's incident, covering every rumor, lie, suggestion, and insinuation. Can you you recall what case I'm talking about?
That's right: The old Marvin Harrison is a gun totting maniac case, where ESPN and their troop of hacks, led by the Pillsbury Doughboy of Sports Reporting (Sal Paolantonio), ran Marvin's name and reputation through the mud.
In the end, the Philadelphia D.A.'s office did not pursue the case due to lack of evidence. During the entire evidence gathering process, Marvin Harrsion was never a suspect in the shooting. Even members of the Philly press thought the story was blown way out of proportion. Heck, the Philly D.A. even went so far as to verbally jab the over-zealous Paolantonio at her press conference, suggesting Sal Pal was disappointed Marvin Harrison wasn't arrested and in handcuffs somewhere. Hell, months after the case was dropped, ESPN continued running hit pieces on Marvin, desperately trying to keep the dead story breathing.
Two essentially identical cases. Two completely different decisions by the "Worldwide Leader" to cover the story.
Now, the only difference I can see between both stories is Ben Roethlisberger is a white NFL quarterback from a nice, small town in Ohio while Marvin Harrison is a black NFL wide receiver from inner city Philadelphia.
I leave it to you to determine why ESPN has ignored Ben's supposed romp with a casino employee but was flies on sh*t with the Marvin non-story.
[UPDATE: It is now 12:26pm Eastern, and ESPN still doesn't have the story up on their site. Yahoo! Sports, which gets more hits than ESPN.com, does. Unbelievable. --bbs]