This story sounds like it belongs in The Onion, but it’s actually true..Herbie up & left Columbus for Nashville, surprising many in the 614 area code – all he was missing was the Baltimore Colts’ yellow & green Mayflower trucks.
The Buckeye football hooligans who presumably razzed Herbstreit (& perhaps his family) for Kirk’s attempt at being an objective college football analyst finally drove him away.
It probably also didn’t help that the IRS finally decided to put a stop to the fire training deductions in U.A. (the Columbus suburb of Upper Arlington) that let homeowners there knock over an old house & gain a massive tax deduction before erecting a new mansion in its place. Nashville is a much easier place to make a living than Ohio, thanks to no state income tax in Tennesee (though TN does have a 6% tax on income received from stocks and bonds not taxed ad valorem).
From Bob Hunter at the Columbus Dispatch:
Kirk Herbstreit and his family moved out of central Ohio yesterday, a change that the ESPN college football analyst said he had pondered for three years. Herbstreit said the move to Nashville, Tenn., was because of the constant criticism he has received from a vocal minority of Ohio State fans who don’t understand that his job at the network demands objectivity and fairness.
“Nobody loves Ohio State more than me,” said Herbstreit, a former Buckeyes quarterback. “I still have a picture of Woody Hayes and my dad (Jim, a former OSU player) in my office, and nobody will do more than I do for the university behind the scenes. But I’ve got a job to do, and I’m going to continue to be fair and objective. To continue to have to defend myself and my family in regards to my love and devotion to Ohio State is unfair.”
Herbstreit said he and his wife, Allison, visited several cities before deciding on Nashville. He will continue to do his Monday radio show on WBNS-FM (97.1) in the fall.
“From a sports perspective, this is rough,” he said. “I love Ohio State. Love the Blue Jackets. Love the Reds. Those are my hobbies. I don’t like moving. I love living here. I don’t want to leave. But I just can’t do this anymore. I really can’t keep going like this.
“Eighty to ninety percent of the Ohio State fans are great. It’s the vocal minority that make it rough. They probably represent only 5 to 10 percent of the fan base, but they are relentless.”