We had the privilege to interview basketball analyst and Host of March Madness, Andy Katz, on the BBB Podcast this week. The former ESPN basketball analyst is most known for hosting President Barack Obama's March Madness bracket selections on ESPN. In the spring of 2017, Katz was among 100 employees laid off by the network. He now writes and broadcasts for Fox, ncaa.com, and other entities.
With the COVID-19 pandemic taking many American jobs over the past year, Andy's words of wisdom can be applied to individuals who had similar emotions to him when they got the call from their respective companies.
Photo: Andy Katz via ESPN
One of the biggest layoffs in the sports media industry took place a few years ago at ESPN. Unfortunately, you were one of the victims. What was going through your mind and what things were you thinking about that could be applicable today?
"I never thought it would make sense to be angry and to show that anger publicly. By doing so, it would hurt your career potential. I was hurt, really hurt. It felt like someone walking up to you and saying they don't love you anymore. It was a shock. You then get the "it's not you, had nothing to do with you, just a tough decision", and I don't think I did anything wrong, it was strictly a financial decision. They got rid of 100 of us and wiped out a lot of money and a tax write-off... I feel great right now.
I don't have any bitterness towards them, because I had 18 great years and did great things. I hold my head up high. I felt that I created a good trend there with my work... What's funny about the industry is you end up working with some of these people again... When I was in Chicago, I worked with camera people that worked for Turner, worked for BTN, worked for ESPN, so it ends up being a really small world. You don't want to burn any bridges."
The full episode of his appearance on the "Beers, Business, and Balls" podcast can be found below. Andy Katz's interview can be found at the 18:46 mark.
Will and Jake