Keith Olbermann

Keith Olbermann


1/27/1959, New York City, NY

Birth Name

Keith Olbermann


out of 10
User Rating
53 votes


Keith Olbermann is a man who knows how to turn a word into something that really means something. The New York native is perhaps best known from his days on ESPN SportsCenter in the 1990's when his witty lines and carefully phrased insights captured the imagination of sports…more


Trivia and Quotes

  • Trivia

    • He served as sports director for WVBR, a student-run commercial radio station in Ithaca.

    • He won a Cable ACE award for Best Sportscaster.

    • He is a lifelong New York Yankees fan.

    • He was a sports anchor and producer for Fox Sports Net from 1998 to 2001, during which time he hosted FOX's studio coverage of baseball.

    • He was one of the founders of the USA Today Baseball Weekly LABR league.

    • He was named best sportscaster by the California Associated Press three times.

    • Began his broadcasting career as a play-by-play announcer for WHTR.

    • He briefly dated conservative talk show host Laura Ingraham.

    • He is referenced in Sports Collectors Bible, a 1979 book by Bert Sugar, which is considered one of the important early books for trading card collectors.

    • He was raised in the Unitarian faith.

    • He went to a private high school.

    • He appeared in commercials for Boston Market.

    • He co-authored the book The Big Show with Dan Patrick.

    • He is 6' 3 1/2" (1.92 m).

    • He was a weekly columnist for

    • He has received death threats because of his newscasts.

    • President Clinton sent him a handwritten note for doing a good job on his newscast, and congratulating him for having his contract extended with MSNBC.

    • He was voted the sexiest male newscaster in 2004 by Playgirl.

    • He is a fan of Howard Stern and he was at Stern's press conference when he moved to Sirius Satellite Radio. Stern let him ask the first question.

    • He is a consultant to the Topps trading card company.

    • He was a smoker. He smoked pipes and cigars for 27 years. He had a benign tumor removed from his palate in July of 2005, which he blames his smoking for the tumor.

    • He released the book The Worst Person in the World...and 202 Strong Contenders in 2006.

    • He was named "The Most Honest Man in News" in 2007 by Rolling Stone.

    • He appeared on the cover of The Sporting News on June 18, 2007.

    • Because of the injury that caused him to lose his depth perception, he doesn't drive.

    • Olbermann and fellow sports anchor Dan Patrick were the models for Aaron Sorkin's Sports Night stars Dan and Casey.

    • Olbermann uses Edward Murrow's famous closing "Good Night and Good Luck" to end his own show Countdown.

    • Olbermann has said his greatest influence came from the American comedy team Bob and Ray.

    • Keith has a BS Communications Arts degree that he earned from Cornell University in 1979.

    • Keith's father, Theodore, was an architect and his mother, Marie, was a pre-school teacher. Keith also has only one sibling, a sister named Jenna.

    • The Simpsons creator, Matt Groening, has said he is a huge fan of Countdown.

    • A self-described fan of the FOX animated television sitcom Family Guy, Olbermann announced in June 2006 on the Dan Patrick Show that he recorded some voice tracks to be used in an upcoming episode.

    • Keith has never been married and has no children.

    • His shoe size is 13 1/2.

    • During the Keith Olbermann/Bill O'Reilly feud O'Reilly put a petition up to remove Olbermann and return Phil Donahue, the orginal time slot holder, but it failed miserabely. This was one of the moments that helped fuel the fire for the major rivalry.

    • While Rita Cosby's Live and Direct was on MSNBC, Olbermann wrote an e-mail to a viewer stating, "Rita's nice, but dumber than a suitcase of rocks." Olbermann later apologized for the e-mail.

    • The feud between Olbermann and Bill O'Reilly can be traced back to the sexual harrassment lawsuit filed against O'Reilly's by a former co-worker after the former claimed O'Reilly made seventeen sexually graphic, harrassing phone calls to her). During the harrassment suit Olbermann jokingly kept track of money his viewers pledged to buy the tapes from O'Reilly's accuser. Olbermann ran a "Save the Tapes" campaign complete with parades and fanfare, further embarrassing O'Reilly.

    • Keith considers Bill O'Reilly to be his nemesis and seems to take joy in poking fun at O'Reilly by referring to him by nicknames such as "The Big Giant Head," a reference to the sitcom 3rd Rock from the Sun, and "Ted Baxter," after Ted Knight's character on The Mary Tyler Moore Show.

    • Olbermann is related to Mike Tyson by marriage (Olbermann's father's brother married the niece of Tyson's adoptive father, making Olbermann and Tyson first step-cousins in-law once removed).

    • Olbermann damaged his depth perception in 1980 when rushing to catch a subway car at Shea Stadium, he slammed his head into the top of the door frame.

    • Olbermann possesses six lumbar vertebrae instead of the usual five.

    • Keith has Coeliac disease (gluten intolerance).

    • He hosted ESPN's SportsCenter in the mid-1990s.

  • Quotes

    • [On the allegations he's a liberal]
      Keith Olbermann: I'm not a liberal, I'm an American.

    • [On the feud with Bill O'Reilly]
      Keith Olbermann: From, let's see, a year, year and a half ago, the whole tenor of this thing changed. It had essentially been me pointing out what kind of crap he was putting on the air, and then it became anything that was said about Bill merited some sort of brilliant overreaction, like an on-air petition to get me fired. Or this thing -- and it would be really funny in a different context -- where he thought he could call up Fox security and local police and get them to somehow go to the house of someone who called his radio show and mentioned my name. I just wait for his overreactions and respond to them now.

    • [On his feud with Bill O'Reilly]
      Keith Olbermann: I'm not declaring victory in that war, but I think the point that Jonathan Alter made was pretty solid -- that if my goal was to make O'Reilly go nuts, I have succeeded.

    • Keith Olbermann: The difference between me and [Bill] O'Reilly is, I will shout 'Fire!' in a crowded theater if there's a fire. I think Bill would shout 'Fire!' in a crowded theater to hear the sound of his own voice.

    • Keith Olbermann: That scene from Network where Howard Beale is walking down the street in his pajamas, mumbling to himself, that's not me. I'm not in a state of perpetual outrage. But I don't think I've ever taken a position on the air that I didn't feel strongly about. What I do is not some kind of performance designed to create an image for myself, or to create false anger in people.

    • Keith Olbermann: I'm Keith Olbermann, good night and good luck.

    • Keith Olbermann: He put the biscuit in the basket!

    • Keith Olbermann: Mr President, have you know sense of decency, sir?