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ESPN’s Pat McAfee says he apologized to Caitlin Clark for ‘massive f— up’

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Pat McAfee said Tuesday that he reached out personally to apologize to Caitlin Clark after he faced major backlash for referring to the Indiana Fever rookie as a “white b—-” while defending her impact on women’s basketball. 

The former NFL kicker opened “The Pat McAfee Show” with another apology for what he called a “massive f— up.” 

McAfee said it was only hours after Monday’s show that he saw the criticism he received for his monologue, which prompted many on social media to accuse him of being “racist” or “sexist.”

“The 15 minutes leading up to that, I was literally talking about how I hope the WNBA and sports media and ex-WNBA players would show a little bit more respect to Caitlin Clark for what she’s brought to the WNBA. And in the end, it was taken in a way that I was the most disrespectful person on earth to Caitlin Clark,” he said Tuesday. 

“Obviously, that’s a massive f— up on my end. I apologize for that.” 

During Monday’s show, McAfee attempted to defend Clark’s stardom amid claims that her race has played a role in her popularity. 

Caitlin Clark talks to the media

“I would like the media people that continue to say, ‘This rookie class, this rookie class, this rookie class.’ Nah, just call it for what it is — there’s one white b—- for the Indiana team who is a superstar,” he said Monday. 


But the following day, McAfee said he sent a personal apology to Clark through the Indiana Fever’s public relations team and heard back that “it was all good.” 

“I meant it as a compliment. Those were my intentions. A lot of people didn’t take it that way. Caitlin Clark did not feel disrespected, but a lot of people said I was disrespecting her — that’s the complete opposite of what I was trying to do.” 

After apologizing for those remarks, McAfee did double down on his initial message about Clark’s impact on the WNBA. 

Pat McAfee runs his show

Clark was selected as the No. 1 pick in the WNBA draft in April. On Monday, she was named Rookie of the Month, becoming just the third player in Fever history to receive the honor. 

She is also just the third player in WNBA history with at least 100 points, 30 rebounds and 30 assists in her first six career games.

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