Stacey Dales, ESPN fail to make a deal

by Mel Bracht Modified: February 13, 2009 at 10:14 am •  Published: February 13, 2009
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Former OU women’s basketball star Stacey Dales called her decision to leave ESPN after six years "a matter of principle” and said other networks have contacted her about working for them.

In negotiating a new three-year contract in December, Dales said she reached an impasse with the network over a travel provision that she did not specify. However, an ESPN source confirmed an Internet report that Dales was unhappy with flying coach while many of her colleagues were flying first class.

"At some point, you have to take a stand at whatever you are doing in life,” Dales said. "That’s not sounding like a feminist. That’s not sounding like a spoiled, rotten kid. That’s making a business decision that affects the quality of your life. That was an important thing for me.”

Since joining ESPN in 2002, Dales had developed into one of the network’s top sideline reporters and provided strong analysis in the college basketball studio.

"ESPN was a great launching pad for something new,” she said. "I had a great experience with them.”

Dales, 29, said she was glad to end her ESPN career working with its top Saturday afternoon college football crew of Brad Nessler, Paul Maguire and Bob Griese.

by Mel Bracht
Copy Editor, Sports Media
Mel Bracht is a copy editor on the presentation desk and also covers sports media. A 1978 graduate of Indiana University, Bracht has been a print journalist for 34 years. He started his career as sports editor of the Rensselaer (Ind.) Republican...
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