On Monday, ESPN announced SC6 host Jemele Hill had been suspended two weeks for a second violation of the company’s social media policy. The announcement came at 3 p.m. ET, three hours prior to when she and Michael Smith were scheduled to host their regular evening edition of SportsCenter.
Smith sat out Monday’s edition of SC6 as well, in what was reported as a “mutual decision” between Smith and ESPN to have someone else host on Monday night in the immediate aftermath of Hill’s suspension. Going forward, Variety reports Smith will host the show alone until Hill’s suspension is finished.
On Tuesday, the discussion about Hill’s suspension raged on with, naturally, president Donald Trump taking to Twitter early in the morning to weigh in and go after Hill and ESPN. The first violation of the social media policy ESPN referred to in its announcement of suspension was her tweets about Trump being a bigot and a white supremacist. Trump’s tweet only ignited the conversation about whether ESPN was right or wrong to suspend Hill further, and kept the decision in the spotlight for at least another day.
Hill had not addressed the suspension publicly, and as of writing on Tuesday afternoon still has not directly, but she did break her silence by tweeting out a heartfelt thank you to her co-host Michael Smith.
Smith and Hill go back to working together on His & Hers as well as other ESPN shows prior to SC6, and Smith was among those that reportedly fought for Hill behind the scenes after her Trump tweets when ESPN allegedly considered pulling her off the air that night. Hill will undoubtedly address her suspension at some point, perhaps on her return to SC6 in two weeks, but for now she wants to make sure her co-host and the rest of the world knows he has her support and appreciation.