Steele has been faraway from air following feedback made throughout a September 29 podcast episode of "Uncut With Jay Cutler."
In a press release to CNN, Steele mentioned: "I know my recent comments created controversy for the company, and I apologize. We are in the midst of an extremely challenging time that impacts all of us, and it's more critical than ever that we communicate constructively and thoughtfully."
While recording the podcast hosted by the previous NFL quarterback, Steele made a number of feedback that left many in sports activities media scratching their heads. While speaking about ESPN's firm vaccine mandate, Steele mentioned she respects a person's choice to get the Covid-19 vaccine "but to mandate it is sick, and it's scary to me."
She additionally spoke to Cutler about her identification as a mixed-race girl, questioning Obama's choice to establish as Black on the census.
"I'm like, 'Well, congratulations to the president.' That's his thing. I think that's fascinating considering his Black dad was nowhere to be found, but his White mom and grandma raised him, but hey, you do you. I'm going to do me," Steele mentioned.
Steele additionally made feedback about feminine sports activities reporters and sexual harassment, saying that girls have to "be responsible" and it "isn't just on players and athletes and coaches to act a certain way."
"I've had talks with young women ... they're like 'Oh, would you look at my tape, would do this,' and I've said listen, I would love to. But the way you present yourself is not something I want to be associated with," she instructed Cutler, who nodded. "So when you dress like that, I'm not saying you deserve the gross comments, but you know what you're doing when you're putting that outfit on, too."
In an interview with CNN's Brianna Keilar on New Day Wednesday, former ESPN host Cari Champion, who at present co-hosts "Cari & Jemele Won't Stick to Sports," mentioned many younger brown ladies within the trade, together with herself, had seemed as much as Steele. To hear her make anti-Black feedback and demean ladies, she mentioned, was disappointing.
"(Steele's comments) implied so many things that were hurtful," mentioned Champion, who acknowledged that she has labored with Steele previously. "And it also shows that there's a lack of an awareness on her part."
Regarding her feedback about ladies reporters particularly, Champion mentioned that mentality, particularly in a male-dominated enterprise like sports activities broadcasting, solely pushes ladies "further down."
"(Steele) thinks that she has taken the moral high ground, and quite frankly all she's done is separated herself and put a division between women in a business that already puts a division between us," Champion mentioned. "It makes it hard for us to get along because we feel like we have to compete. And it's so disappointing."
ESPN is having personal discussions with Steele, a spokesperson for the community mentioned in a press release.
"At ESPN, we embrace different points of view -- dialogue and discussion make this place great. That said, we expect that those points of view be expressed respectfully, in a manner consistent with our values, and in line with our internal policies," they mentioned. "We are having direct conversations with Sage and those conversations will remain private."
According to the Times' report, Nichols, who's White, mentioned Taylor, who's Black, was chosen to steer NBA Finals protection as a result of firm's variety efforts.
Nichols later apologized on air.
A earlier model of this story incorrectly described Steele's elimination from air as a suspension on second reference. It has been corrected.