ESPN is returning several dozen Emmy Awards that were won using a fake-name scam.
The goal was to earn trophies for on-air stars like Kirk Herstreit, Lee Corso, and Desmond Howard by submitting fake associate producers for College GameDay.
After the imaginary producer was sent a trophy, ESPN would remove the nameplate, engrave a new one, then give it to the star.
On-air personalities were not eligible for the awards, which were meant for behind-the-scenes staffers.
Pseudonyms were used with the on-air talent’s initials – like ‘Kirk Henry’ for Herbstreit and ‘Lee Clark’ for Corso.
ESPN apologized, calling it “a misguided attempt to recognize on-air individuals who were important members of our production team.”
The Athletic says the scheme dates back to at least 2010, and possibly as far back as 1997.
Should ESPN face further discipline beyond just giving back the trophies? Would you want to keep a trophy if it turned out you didn’t earn it fairly?