For years, Travis, who also hosts a gambling show on Fox Sports and runs a website called Outkick, has been building a brand partly rooted in attacking progressive athletes and accusing ESPN of liberal bias. But this summer, as the pandemic, protests over racial injustice and the approaching election collided with the return of sports, Travis’s nascent mini-media empire has morphed into the go-to platform for Republicans hoping to win over sports fans.
… The motivation is clear for politicos, said Republican strategist Jim Hobart, given Travis’s audience of red-state SEC fans.
“These sports issues can be a very effective base motivator,” he explained. “They can drive donor interest, especially small-donor interest, and the reason they are going on with Clay is that he reaches the same audience that they are trying to reach.”
For Travis, the calculation may be riskier. After spending years lambasting the politicization of sports and arguing about the business downsides of activism, his own politics may be impacting his long-term position in sports media.
He’s not hiding anything, because he doesn’t feel the need to hide anything, which says a lot about what he thinks of the people he’s pitching his shtick to.
“Stick to sports” is profitable in this day and age, if you know how to sell it. And whom to sell it to.