Fox Sports fires Jamie Horowiz, the architect of sports TV debate culture, and it sounds like the situation is about to get ugly

Jamie HorowitzFrederick M. Brown/Getty ImagesJamie Horowitz is largely credited with today’s sports television debate culture.

In a surprising move, Jamie Horowitz has been fired as president of FOX Sports National Networks, according to several reports.

John Ourand of Sports Business Daily first reported the move.

While it is unclear why Horowitz was let go unexpectedly, some of the emerging details suggest the situation was ugly and about to get uglier.

Sports Business Daily obtained an internal email sent by Fox Sports President Eric Shanks on Monday, informing staff that Horowitz would be leaving Fox Sports “effective immediately.” The email also hinted at Horowitz’s behaviour being behind the move.

“Everyone at FOX Sports, no matter what role we play, or what business, function or show we contribute to — should act with respect and adhere to professional conduct at all times. These values are non-negotiable.”

It also now appears that Horowitz is going to take Fox Sports to court over the dismissal.

According to Eric Hayden of The Hollywood Reporter, Horowitz has hired a “powerhouse” lawyer.

“The reasons are unclear for the abrupt departure but he has hired powerhouse litigator Patty Glaser to represent him, suggesting he takes issue with the reason behind his exit,” Hayden wrote.

Before being hired by Fox Sports in 2015 to overhaul the programming on Fox Sports 1 and Fox Sports 2, Horowitz was at ESPN where he is credited with being the architect behind their “Embrace Debate” culture, a move that led to the rise of “First Take,” and created today’s sports television debate culture, especially during daytime programming.

At Fox Sports Horowitz hired several former ESPNers, including Colin Cowherd, Skip Bayless, and Jason Whitlock.

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