Notre Dame’s Analyst Pinkett Gets Ban for ‘Criminals’ Comment

University of Notre Dame football radio analyst Allen Pinkett was banned from three games without pay after he said the team needs “criminals” to win.

Pinkett has missed one game, being pulled from Notre Dame’s 50-10 season-opening win over the U.S. Naval Academy in Dublin, Ireland, on Sept. 1.

A two-time All-American running back in the 1980s, Pinkett will miss games against Purdue and Michigan State, according to a statement from IMG, which holds the broadcast rights for Notre Dame football. A replacement would be named in the coming days, IMG said in the statement, which included an apology from Pinkett.

“I love this school as much as I love my kids and would never want to compromise the ethics and morals of my alma mater,” Pinkett said. “This offering of forgiveness is an extremely humbling life lesson. I will work very hard to make the most of this second chance in representing the high standards and proud tradition of Notre Dame football.”

Pinkett had said during a radio interview that successful teams need a few bad citizens. He spoke after Notre Dame suspended two players, including leading rusher Cierre Wood, for two games for violating team rules.

“I mean, that’s how Ohio State used to win all the time,” he said. “They would have two or three guys that were criminals. That just adds to the chemistry of the team. I think Notre Dame is growing because maybe they have some guys that are doing something worthy of a suspension, which creates edge on the football team. You can’t have a football team full of choir boys.”

Notre Dame Athletic Director Jack Swarbrick called the remarks “nonsense.”

Notre Dame was 8-5 last season.

Bloomberg Radio is the broadcast home for Notre Dame football in New York.

To contact the reporter on this story: Scott Soshnick in New York at ssoshnick@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Sillup at msillup@bloomberg.net

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