Desmond Howard’s Ohio State roast at Heisman ceremony didn’t land
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Saturday night’s Heisman ceremony was pretty chalky. As we all expected, the prize went to Alabama quarterback Bryce Young, whose record-breaking 421 passing SEC Championship passing performance against Georgia virtually sealed his victory. But what we weren’t expecting was one of ESPN’s hosts, Desmond Howard, to try out a bit of stand-up comedy on national television.
And oh, mate, the joke didn’t land.
All went wrong when the hosts introduced Michigan defensive end Aidan Hutchinson. The senior has had a stellar season, totaling 14 sacks after managing just 3.5 overall in his previous three years at Ann Arbor. However, the performance that likely earned him a spot on that stage came against Ohio State, when he sacked fellow runner-up CJ Stroud three times.
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Where Desmond Howard tried to make people laugh
There was probably a bit of awkwardness between the two already, but Howard, who won the Heisman Trophy in Michigan in 1991, decided it was the best time to cast some shade on the Wolverines’ biggest rival. in the Buckeyes – whose loss to Michigan ended an eight-game winning streak in the series.
Hutchinson said one of his goals coming back for his senior year was to beat Ohio State and win the Big Ten Championship, which drew laughs and audible “ooooohs” from the crowd. Howard co-host and other Heisman winner Tim Tebow intervened with a joke.
“Kenny, I’m glad you’re between them,” Tebow told runner-up Kenny Pickett, who stood between Hutchinson and Stroud. “Please stay there. “
Pretty fun, isn’t it? Too playful, if you ask Howard.
“Better than his offensive linemen,” Howard said.
Here is the full exchange.
Broadcasters, uncomfortable crowd after Desmond Howard joke
As you can see, it’s not just those of us looking at home who have been made uncomfortable by this line. Howard’s co-hosts were visibly uncomfortable after his comment. Former Baylor quarterback, Heisman winner and current ESPN broadcaster Robert Griffin III shook his head and said “just throw them under the bus” as some members of the audience booed.
Look, I’m not here to catch pearls on rivalry jokes. This is what brings this sport to life. But it clearly made everyone involved uncomfortable, including Hutchinson. Blowing up Stroud and his teammates like that wasn’t necessary, especially on a night out meant to celebrate the accomplishments of the four finalists.
If you’re keen to take the moment and talk about it, Desmond, please at least make the jokes funnier in the future. Because we’re all cringeing on your behalf right now.
This article originally appeared on The Columbus Dispatch: Breaking The Roast by Desmond Howard of Ohio State
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