ESPN Launches Investigation Into Mike Ditka's 'Fartgate' - Rolling Stone
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ESPN Launches Investigation Into Mike Ditka’s ‘Fartgate’

Determined to get to the bottom of the scandal rocking ‘NFL Countdown,’ network tasks comedian Frank Caliendo with clearing the air

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Mike Ditka denies any and all involvement in 'Fartgate.'

Maddie Meyer/Getty

Not since “Deflategate” have so many been concerned with air escaping from something leathery.

Earlier this week, during the lead-up to Monday Night Football that was the thing you had to watch before the Force Awakens trailer premieredESPN’s Countdown crew killed time by making predictions about the game. Cris Carter, who was drafted by the Eagles in 1987 but cut by the team two years later, went with the Giants basically out of spite, which apparently rubbed his colleague (and Pennsylvania native) Mike Ditka the wrong way.

Instead of voicing his disagreement, Ditka simply raised his right butt cheek and sent a roaring fart in Carter’s general direction. At least, that’s sure what it sounded like.

Look, people fart. It happens, especially when you’re way past 70 and have a history of treating your workplace like your own personal La-Z-Boy recliner. But Ditka, ever resolute, has denied any involvement in “Fartgate” – “Believe me, I’m to the point in my life where it doesn’t matter,” he told the Chicago Sun-Times  and, as is often the case whenever anything goes wrong on Countdown, he blamed Chris Berman (“It was Boomer,” Ditka said, “he’s an Eagles fan.”) It seems the real culprit, much like the fart itself, is in the wind.

But ESPN is determined to solve the mystery once and for all, launching an in-depth investigation into “Fartgate,” one spearheaded by noted muckraker – and impressionist – Frank Caliendo.

“Live audio during last week’s Monday Night Countdown show picked up a sound that had social media buzzing,” the network announced in a press release late Thursday. “Did legendary Hall-of-Famer Mike Ditka fart on live television? In a comedic search for the truth, Countdown impressionist Frank Caliendo investigates.”

According to ESPN, Caliendo will reveal his findings on Sunday NFL Countdown (11 a.m. ET). We’re not sure how he’ll do it, though we’re willing to bet a pair of aviator shades will be involved. Hey, who do you trust more: Caliendo, or Ted Wells?

In This Article: ESPN, NFL, sports


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