Fake outrage alert.
Angelo Cataldi and Howard Eskin are bothered by the fact that Jalen Hurts showed up to his Eagles media session wearing a Houston Astros hat.
This is not allowed, apparently, because Hurts is now a Philadelphia player and shouldn’t be showing love for another team via clothing choices. That’s the logic, if we’re following it correctly.
Okay, first things first:
Jalen Hurts is from Houston. The Astros are his hometown team. There is absolutely nothing wrong with a guy from Houston, Texas, repping one of the teams he grew up watching.
He says exactly that right here in this video clip:
I’m going to give Jalen Hurts a pass this time when he spoke yesterday with his Astros tire. He doesn’t know Phila and fans yet. This is a no no but cause his concern was getting ready for his first start as #Eagles QB. Houston is home. But never again. @SportsRadioWIP pic.twitter.com/rf7NAOtw37
— Howard Eskin (@howardeskin) December 10, 2020
Said Hurts, in part:
“I can’t forget where I come from, though. When I threw my first touchdown, I kind of threw up (gestures), this is not horns up, this is H-town, this is from the H (Houston). Just showing a little love for the loved ones back at home in Houston.”
No problem. He’s just representing his hometown. He’s allowed to do that and it’s something that we would endorse if the situation was reversed, right? We love the fact that Mike Trout goes hard for Philadelphia despite playing his baseball in Los Angeles, and I’m willing to bet that Angels fans wouldn’t give half a shit if he showed up to a press conference wearing a Birds hat. They’re smart enough to know that he can bust his ass for their team and give 100% on the field while still showing loyalty to the clubs he grew up supporting.
That brings us to the antithetical portion of the program. Nobody loves to rep local more than Philly. We’re “4 for 4” and can’t stand the cockroach Cowboy fans in this region. You’re supposed to support only your hometown teams, or else it’s a violation.
Yet when Jalen Hurts does that very thing, then what? That thinking is rendered null and void? The rules don’t apply? We become fake offended because the guy is doing the very same thing we’ve preached for decades now? The thinking is hypocritical and counterintuitive, but par for the course for Howard and Angelo.
The macro-level concern here is that people actually believe this stuff, because lazy radio hosts in this town continue to make Philly sports fans dumber by presenting these antiquated and disingenuous criticisms. This should be harmless, but their listeners are gullible and not very smart.
WIP even ran a poll on this topic, and as of publication of this article, nearly 40% of respondents decided to click “rookie mistake” –
It should be 100% for “no big deal,” and that’s what’s baffling, that people seem to truly be offended by the fact that the Eagles rookie quarterback showed up to a press conference wearing the hat of his hometown baseball team.
And the cheating scandal is not relevant. Hurts has nothing to do with that. He wasn’t in the hallway banging a trash can or wearing a buzzer under his shirt. The guy simply grew up in Houston and is repping his local team, just like we would.
Here’s Angelo’s corny take on the matter:
It’s all fake. It’s just a shtick. He doesn’t believe anything he’s saying.
But his listeners do, and that’s the problem. The problem is that guys running a sports radio entertainment shtick double as influencers, and it’s had a palpable negative effect on Philadelphia sports fandom for the better part of 30 years. It’s nothing but fake outrage, antiquated and hypocritical takes, and emotional and kneejerk reaction for fans that can’t be bothered to step away and organically generate half an ounce of independent, critical thinking.
The level of sports discourse in this town is embarrassingly low.