Former Washington defensive end Dexter Manley was dimissed from his role as a football commentator for WTOP this morning following a segment in which he called former Dallas Cowboys quarterback Troy Aikman a “queer.” Jim Farley, WTOP’s vice president for news, says Manley, 53, won’t be coming back to his airwaves.
“Needless to say we will not have him back on WTOP,” Farley tells Washingtonian.
Manley was on about 9:40 AM to discuss Washington’s 45-21 loss to the Denver Broncos yesterday, and his conversation with hosts Mike Moss and Bruce Alan turned to Fox’s broadcast team for the game, which featured Aikman as a commentator. Here’s how it went:
Moss: Was it a big jinx that Troy Aikman was doing the game? Former Cowboy?
Manley: I think Troy Aikman’s a queer.
Alan: Uh-oh! We don’t want to go there.
Manley: I’m sorry about that.
Moss: Do you want to apologize to him?
Moss: You don’t?
Manley: I’ll just say I take that back. Since he’s a Cowboy fan.
Moss: Well, we don’t certainly want to think that anybody endorses anything like that, Dexter, because that is not an area we want to go in.
Manley: I apologize.
Audio of the full segment is below. Manley’s comments about Aikman begins about 3 minutes 15 seconds into the clip.
In a brief phone interview, Manley, who played for Washington from 1981 to 1989 and was a member of two Super Bowl-winning teams, says he made his initial reaction to Aikman “in fun” without realizing the impact of using the word “queer” as an insult.
“It’s such a serious issue in America and I shouldn’t have used those terms,” he tells Washingtonian. “I’m so sorry for using those terms.”