A female Houston news anchor made an embarrassing gaffe while reporting on a Sunday NFL game, prompting a social media debate about gender in sports coverage.
Following the Houston Texans’ victory over the highly touted New England Patriots, KPRC’s Dominique Sachse mixed up baseball and football terminology, declaring that the Texans led the game “for all four innings.”
A clip of the flub was uploaded to Twitter on Sunday and went viral, garnering more than 600,000 views.
Social media commenters’ responses ranged from gentle ribbing to outright mockery.
And some Twitter users brought up gender in sports reporting, a field which tends to be dominated by men.
This is why guys don’t take a lot of us girls serious in sports ?♀️
— Heidi Lopez (@Clownette_816) December 2, 2019
“This is why guys don’t take a lot of us girls serious in sports,” said one female Twitter user.
“Back to the kitchen,” tweeted another commenter.
In a tweet that received thousands of “likes,” Matt Walsh, a conservative pundit and contributor to The Daily Wire, quipped that Sachse had “just set female sports reporters back by 50 years.”
I can't wait to hear about how laughing at this very obvious gaffe will be "deep-rooted misogyny" LOL
— Stephen Mason (@Steveohmygoodne) December 3, 2019
But other commenters were more forgiving of Sachse’s gaffe.
Some urged Twitter to cut Sachse some slack, suggesting she might have been reading off a teleprompter.
“Dominique is not a sports reporter. She’s an anchor. The win was such big news that it made the Newsreader level,” tweeted Melissa Mackenzie, publisher of the American Spectator.
Men in sports coverage
The prevalence of male sports reporters and journalists reflects viewership demographics in the top American leagues.
NFL, NBA, MLB and NHL audiences are overwhelmingly male.
According to data compiled by two University of Southern California researchers, 90.1 percent of editors, 90.2 percent of assistant editors, 87.6 percent of columnists and 87.4 percent of reporters are male in the sports media industry.
A report released by the Women’s Media Center in 2014 found gender representation in sports journalism to be particularly imbalanced.
Some media outlets have responded by taking it upon themselves to foster change, hiring female journalists and reporters whose perspectives align with “woke” ideology.