Sage Steele On ESPN “Hypocrisy”: “There Were Different Rules For Me Than Everyone Else”

Longtime SportsCenter anchor Sage Steele is speaking out after announcing that she was leaving ESPN after settling her lawsuit against the network and Disney.

“All I ever wanted was consistency,” Steele told Megyn Kelly in an interview Thursday on SiriusXM’s The Megan Kelly Show.

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Steele sued ESPN and corporate parent Disney in April 2022 for allegedly violating both her contract ad free speech rights. In the lawsuit, Steele alleged she had been “sidelined” by the network in 2021 after she made controversial remarks about ESPN’s Covid policy and former President Barack Obama’s ethnic identity, questioning the fact the Obama identifies as Black, given the circumstances of his upbringing.

Kelly pointed to several instances where several of Steele’s fellow ESPN colleagues spoke out on controversial political issues without repercussion. Steele reminded that she made her comments on a podcast, not on-the-air on ESPN, on her personal time.

“And if we are allowing my peers to go on social media, much less on our own airwaves, saying things … that have nothing to do with sports that are political, … then I should be allowed on my personal time to give my opinion on my experiences personally, without telling others what to do … I think that’s just what breaks my heart. That there were different rules for me than everyone else.”

Steele had been pulled from several assignments and told Kelly she was forced to apologize for her remarks before ESPN would allow her to return to the air. She told Kelly she felt that she had no choice.

“I did not want to apologize,” Steele said. “I fought. I fought and I begged and I screamed, and I was told that if I want to keep my job, I have to apologize. … I knew there was a line somewhere. I just didn’t know where it was until I crossed it.”

In a statement Tuesday on X/Twitter, Steele announced she was leaving the network so she could “exercise her First Amendment rights more freely.”

You can watch her interview in the video above.

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