Dislike of the Philadelphia Inquirer / ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith is hardly confined to the Post’s Peter Vescey, the former being a polarizing figure. You either dislike him or totally hate him. But I’ve yet to read any suggestion that Smith’s career advancement is the result of an elaborate prank. Not that is, until the Austin American-Stateman’s Michael Cochoran wrote the following yesterday :

ESPN daily programming is set to get worse. Stephen A. Smith is getting a daily one-hour show in August. You wonder if the Derminator’s rise up the ranks is one of those “Trading Places” things, with a couple of higher-ups at ESPN betting a dollar on whether they could make this clueless decibel dandy a star.

If this really were a “Trading Places” sort of scenario, the same higher-ups would have taken another deserving journalist/commentator (presumably a white guy) and sentenced him to a career far from the limelight, perhaps toiling for a small market newspaper like the Austin American-Statesman.

Please note that Michael Cochoran doesn’t look anything like Dan Ackroyd.