During the primetime match up of Georgia versus Auburn on CBS, a huge SEC showdown on Saturday, a female photographer on the sidelines was hit and knocked unconscious during the game. While players and staff rushed over to check the woman, who was later identified as Chamberlain Smith, an intern in the Georgia athletic department, CBS Sports analyst Gary Danielson somehow found the extremely scary situation to be hilarious.
Danielson, a former NFL quarterback, and veteran commentator for college sports, first misidentified the injured person as Auburn defensive player KJ Britt.
“I wonder if he’s the one who got injured on the play, No. 33,” Danielson said, before getting corrected by fellow commentator, Brad Nessler.
Once it was made clear to him that the Tigers’ athlete was fine, and the Georgia running back, who accidentally trampled the reporter was okay, he chalked up the entire situation with a chuckle and said, “Britt is fine… Marion is fine. But the person Brian Herrien ran into, is not. Herrien’s going, ‘I’m back in the game,'” – as if that was the only important thing to note.
Viewers watching the Georgia Bulldogs (8-1) playing against the Auburn Tigers (7-2) at Jordan-Hare Stadium were in shock while listening to Danielson joke about what could turn out to be a grave situation for Smith.
The photographer was eventually treated by medical staff and taken off the field in a stretcher. Sideline reporter, Jamie Erdahl, said the young lady was knocked out cold, and was unable to move her extremities. During the post-halftime update, it was indicated that she’d been taken to the hospital for further observation.
While fans in attendance at the game in Alabama stood up in silence, awaiting to see if the photographer would either move or stand up, Danielson asked, “Did it look to you like she had to camera shooting pictures as she got run over?”
After the game, in which the Bulldogs defeated Auburn, Georgia’s head coach Kirby Smart started his press conference by sending out his prayers to Chamberlain Smith.
At around 7:45 p.m. local time, reporter Jamie Erdahl Buckman shared an update on Chamberlain’s status. She tweeted, “The young woman, Chamberlain Smith, who was knocked unconscious on the sideline will be released from the hospital later this evening.”
Twitter Erupts With Anger For Danielson’s Unprofessionalism
After the ugly scene, viewers watching the SEC match-up at home were stunned by Danielson’s remarks, and shared their ire online. On Twitter, users online called him tone-deaf, and waited for an on-air apology, which never took place.
One user tweeted, “Dear@CBSSports Gary Danielson’s handling of the camera person’s injury in the #UGAvsAUB game was so unprofessional, hurtful & tone deaf that I have changed the channel & will never watch a game with his commentary again. The definition of insensitive.
Ryne Rankin tweeted, “I can’t stand Gary Danielson commentary… this ain’t a laughing or chuckle matter at this moment… smh.”
Gary Danielson Played Quarterback In the NFL for 13 Years
Danielson, 68, is a former veteran NFL player. After playing quarterback at Purdue University, he played for the Detroit Lions from 1976 to 1984, and for the Cleveland Browns in 1985, 1987, and 1988.
After retiring from the NFL, Danielson started working for ESPN as a college football analyst. In 2006, he joined CBS Sports and has continued to work as part of the network’s primary broadcast team for SEC games.