Contrary to belief, it was as much necessity as fashion statement but to anyone who remembers the debut of ESPN2 in 1993, there’s no forgetting what the anchors were wearing. Keith Olbermann in a leather jacket? Hey, why not. Now, that somewhat amusing little slice of TV history and another momento of the well-known broadcaster’s initial stint at ESPN are on the auction block to help homeless pets.
Robert Edward Auctions has partnered with Olbermann, a long-time collector, to offer the brown bomber jacket as well as an ESPN-branded
leather jacket given to him around the same time. All proceeds from the sale, including the buyer’s premium, will be donated to From The Heart (www.fthar.org), a last-chance dog shelter in El Paso, Texas, which takes in all the dogs and cats that are to be euthanized by other shelters.
The new network was chasing a younger audience, using all lower case fonts and snazzy graphics along presenting its shows with a more casual vibe. Many believe the network and producers of ESPN2’s news-oriented Sports Night show wanted the anchors to be more “hip,” but according to Olbermann, that was not the reason for his fashion choice that night.
“Due to an undetected automatic air conditioning/automatic light grid snafu, the studio was so cold that I had been wearing it in rehearsals,” Olbermann related. “The afternoon of the premiere, the executive producer saw me in the leather jacket and said, ‘You should wear that on the air.’ I immediately told him that was the greatest idea I had ever heard.”
Bidding on each jacket starts at $200. Robert Edward Auctions will instruct the winning bidder to make the tax-deductible check out to From The Heart directly. The company will also arrange for Olbermann to sign one or both of the jackets if desired. The final day for bidding is Saturday, April 30.
More information about the jackets, as well as the more than 1900 additional items offered in the auction can be found at www.RobertEdwardAuctions.com.