Clay Travis

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Clay Travis
Clay Travis 2013-02-23.jpg
Travis in 2013
Born Richard Clay Travis
(1979-04-06) April 6, 1979 (age 39)
Nashville, Tennessee, U.S.
Nationality American
Education George Washington University
Vanderbilt University Law School
Occupation Sports journalist
Writer
Radio host
Years active 2005–present
Spouse(s)
Lara Travis (m. 2004)
Children 3 sons
Website www.outkickthecoverage.com

Richard Clay Travis (born April 6, 1979) is an American sports journalist, writer, television analyst, and the morning radio show host for nationwide Fox Sports Radio from 6-9 am et. Travis used to work as an analyst on Fox Sports 1's college football pre-game show and their weekly SEC football show.

Early life[edit]

Travis was born on April 6, 1979, in Nashville, Tennessee and graduated from Martin Luther King Magnet at Pearl High School in 1997. He graduated from George Washington University in 2001, majoring in history, as well as working as a student basketball manager. He then attended the Vanderbilt University Law School and graduated in 2004.

Career[edit]

Travis originally worked as a lawyer in the U.S. Virgin Islands and Tennessee.[1] He attracted media attention in late 2004 with his personal blog written while he was living in the U.S. Virgin Islands. A Tennessee Titans fan, Travis was unable to get NFL Sunday Ticket, the satellite TV package to watch NFL games in the islands, and went on a "pudding strike", eating only pudding every day for 50 days, with the goal of forcing DirecTV to carry the package in the Virgin Islands.[2] The effort failed, but he blogged about the experience and received media attention.[3][4]

Travis began writing online for CBS Sports in September 2005, which for the first year was not paid.[5] In 2006, Travis finally gave up his law practice for good.[6] Later, while writing for CBS, Travis began working on a book, Dixieland Delight, where he visited all 12 stadiums in college football's Southeastern Conference.[1] After leaving CBS, Travis became a writer and editor at Deadspin, and then a national columnist at FanHouse.[5]

Outkick the Coverage[edit]

After FanHouse was merged into Sporting News in 2011, Travis founded Outkickthecoverage.com.[5] The website later became one of the most visited college football sites on the web.[6] While there, he continued developing his reputation for occasionally "contrarian" opinions.[7]

In 2008, Travis worked out at D1 Sports Training with NFL prospects preparing for the NFL Draft. He later wrote a ten-part serial about the experience which he entitled Rough Draft.[8]

In 2010, Nashville Scene named Travis "Best Sports Radio Host We Love To Hate" in the publication's "Best of Nashville" issue.[citation needed] He later became a co-host of a sports radio talk show, 3HL, on Nashville's 104.5 The Zone with Brent Dougherty and Blaine Bishop.[9] He also hosted a national sports radio show on NBC Sports.[5]

Fox Sports[edit]

In 2014, Travis resigned from his role on 3HL[9] and was hired by Fox Sports for its weekly college football Saturday pre-game show.[6] In 2015, he signed a deal with Fox Sports to license his entire sports media brand under Fox Sports, including his website Outkick the Coverage, which was folded into Fox Sports' website.[10] He also started a national weekly television show, started a daily Outkick the Show broadcast on Periscope and Facebook, and began a national radio show with Fox Sports Radio in 2016.[11]

Travis was called out by DeMarcus Cousins for an erroneous prediction he had made five years earlier that Cousins would be arrested.[12][13] In response, Travis offered to donate to a charity of Cousins' choosing.[12][13]

Controversies[edit]

Vanderbilt Confederate Memorial Hall[edit]

In August 2016, Travis criticized his alma mater, Vanderbilt University, for planning to remove the word "Confederate" for its historic Confederate Memorial Hall.[14] Consequently, Travis lost a $3,000 promotion deal he had with Jack Daniel's.[14] Travis admitted online that a Jack Daniel's representative decided that his Twitter commentary on the statue "brings (the company) into public disrepute."[15]

CNN "boobs" comment[edit]

On September 15, 2017, Travis appeared as a guest on CNN, with anchor Brooke Baldwin, to discuss free speech, specifically whether ESPN personality, Jemele Hill, should be fired for calling Donald Trump a “white supremacist” and stating that police officers were “modern day slave catchers” on her personal Twitter page. Travis stated that it would be bad policy on ESPN’s part to fire Hill for her private comments, just as it was bad policy when ESPN fired Curt Shilling for comments he made regarding transgender bathrooms, also on his personal Twitter page. Travis received criticism for using a phrase he commonly used on his radio show when he said ”...I’m a First Amendment absolutist - the only two things I 100 percent believe in are the First Amendment and boobs...” [16] Baldwin cut the interview short and later responded, “when I first heard 'boobs' from a grown man on national television (in 2017!!!) my initial thought bubble was: ‘Did I hear that correctly??..."[17]

On multiple occasions, Travis had stated the same sentiment on his web site.[18]

Politics[edit]

A self described "Southern white conservative" who is pro-choice and against the death penalty, Travis said he voted for former President Barack Obama twice and never voted Republican.[19]

As an undergrad, Travis interned for U.S. Representative Bob Clement for four years while in college at George Washington University.[20] In 2000, he worked on Al Gore's presidential campaign.[19] Travis was hired to work on U.S. Representative Jim Cooper's 2002 congressional campaign but was fired for wrecking Coopers's wife's car.[20]

On September 20, 2017, Travis announced he was considering running as an Independent for U.S. Senator of Tennessee in the 2018 election if incumbent Bob Corker decided not to run. Travis also stated that he believed with his name recognition he "could beat anyone in the state" and would make both major parties "incredibly nervous."[21] The following week, Senator Corker announced he would not be running for re-election.[22]

Personal life[edit]

Travis' wife, Lara, is a former Tennessee Titans cheerleader. They have three sons together.[4]

Books authored[edit]

  • Dixieland Delight: A Football Season on the Road in the Southeastern Conference. HarperCollins, Inc. 2007. ISBN 0-06-143124-9. 
  • On Rocky Top: A Front-Row Seat to the End of an Era. HarperCollins, Inc. 2009. ISBN 0-06-171926-9. 
  • Republicans Buy Sneakers Too: How the Left Is Ruining Sports with Politics. Broadside Books. 2018. ISBN 0062878530. 

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Clay Travis goes from couch crasher to sports media celeb". USA TODAY. Retrieved 2015-10-15. 
  2. ^ "Give Him Tv Football Or Give Him Pudding!". tribunedigital-orlandosentinel. Retrieved 2015-10-15. 
  3. ^ Times, Matt ChristianPrinceton. "From pudding strikes to radio, writers touch their audiences". 
  4. ^ a b "10/10/2004: Clay Travis protests lack of Titans on TV a spoonful at a time". 
  5. ^ a b c d "FOX Sports 1 Takes On ESPN With Unique Talent That Includes Clay Travis". Forbes. Retrieved 2015-10-15. 
  6. ^ a b c "Sports Media Personality Clay Travis Creates Multi-Million Dollar Brand". Forbes. Retrieved 2015-10-15. 
  7. ^ "Clay Travis re-signs with Fox Sports to expand his "sports media brand"". Awful Announcing. Retrieved 2015-10-15. 
  8. ^ AOL. "Sports News & latest headlines from AOL". 
  9. ^ a b Travis, Clay. "Signing off 3HL tomorrow, and radio ... for now". 
  10. ^ "Clay Travis finds new home with Fox Sports megadeal". The Tennessean. Retrieved 2015-10-15. 
  11. ^ "Clay Travis to launch national college football TV show". The Tennessean. Retrieved 2015-10-15. 
  12. ^ a b "DeMarcus Cousins trolls writer who said he would be arrested". SI.com. Retrieved 2015-10-15. 
  13. ^ a b "NBA player destroys writer who 5 years ago said there was a 100% chance he would be arrested within 5 years". Business Insider. Retrieved 2015-10-15. 
  14. ^ a b Tamburin, Adam (August 17, 2016). "Jack Daniel's nixes Clay Travis deal over 'Confederate' controversy". The Tennessean. Retrieved August 18, 2016. 
  15. ^ https://www.tennessean.com/story/news/education/2016/08/17/jack-daniels-nixes-clay-travis-deal-over-confederate-controversy/88898546/
  16. ^ Concha, Joe. "Radio host on CNN: I believe in 'the First Amendment and boobs'". The Hill. September 15, 2017.
  17. ^ "Brooke Baldwin: Speaking like this to women in 2017? No way". 
  18. ^ Borchers, Callum. "Clay Travis used his 'First Amendment and boobs' line long before he shocked CNN". The Washington Post. September 15, 2017.
  19. ^ a b Travis, Clay (14 August 2017). "Yes, I've Turned Down TV Show(s)". Outkick the Coverage. Retrieved 29 September 2017. 
  20. ^ a b Rau, Nate (1 July 2014). "Clay Travis: couch crasher to sports media celebrity". The Tennessean. Retrieved 29 September 2017. 
  21. ^ Conradis, Brandon (September 20, 2017). "Sports radio host and ESPN critic mulls Senate run in Tennessee". The Hill. Retrieved September 29, 2017. 
  22. ^ Collins, Michael (September 26, 2017). "Sen. Bob Corker will not seek re-election next year". The Tennessean. Retrieved September 29, 2017. 

External links[edit]