Originally posted on The Sports Bank  |  Last updated 11/2/11

I guess we have this year’s Jenn Sterger vs. Brett Favre dong pics and sexting scandal media sensation. And once again, it involves a sideline reporter and breaks first on Deadspin.

This one involves media star Erin Andrews and former ESPN Senior VP Keith Clinkscales. He’s the man who previously led the Content Development Department, which gave us the “30 for 30″ series. Deadspin has a source within the Mothership who is now being sued by this man. This story is messy and complicated to say the least.

According to Deadspin:

we received an email from the spouse of an upper-level Content Development executive who is leaving ESPN. “This place is a s*** show,” our tipster wrote. The group, he wrote, had been dissolved to “get rid of” Clinkscales—whose transgressions, we’d learn in subsequent conversations with the tipster and his wife, allegedly included a physical altercation with a co-worker and an incident of masturbation in front of sideline reporter and peeping victim Erin Andrews. Top-level ESPN personnel knew of these incidents, these sources said, but nevertheless kept them quiet.

Clinkscales is now suing the woman he believes to be our source. Just to be clear: A former ESPN senior vice president is suing another former ESPN executive on the grounds that she defamed him in a story that we hadn’t written yet. That we’re now publishing.

READ THE WHOLE THING HERE

What kind of person files a pre-emptive lawsuit? Over something that hasn’t even happened yet? Huh?

It’s a long read but it’s worth it. Even the legalese sections. Those are important.

Also important is to remember the lessons of last fall. Deadspin first reported eveidence of the Sterger story in August. And a lot of old traditional media refused to take them seriously. I knew they were on the ball, I posted a link and exceprt that morning because I knew what kind of resources and capabilites Deadspin has. It wasn’t until they released all their evidence of Favre’s dong pics that the story took off.

And remember the mainstream media were reluctant to cover it at first. Don’t make the same mistake this fall. Believe me, if they’re doing this they have the goods. And it will be very interesting to see how all this plays out. You know ESPN never reports on itself, so all coverage of this will have to come from the Bristol boys’s rivals. Will it be biased?

You know there a book out there highlighting all the sexual miscreant behavior that goes on at the Evil Empire, is this just another more high profile incident? What about Andrews herself, she’s already been the victim of a stalker, a peep hole pervert and received death threats. And now this on top of it?

How will another incidence of victimhood affect EA’s profile?

And of course, what will become of the story’s initial villain, the previously obscure but now soon to be notorious Clinkscales?

Get ready, all these questions and more will be answered in the days and weeks ahead.

Paul M. Banks is CEO of The Sports Bank.net, a Google News site generating millions of unique visitors. He’s also a regular contributor to Chicago Now, Walter Football, Yardbarker, and Fox Sports.

A Fulbright scholar and MBA, Banks has appeared on live radio all over the world; he’s also a member of the FWAA, USBWA and SPJ. The President of the United States follows him on Twitter (@Paul_M_BanksTSB) You should too.

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