Matt Leinart was a hero just 15 years ago in Los Angeles at USC winning a Heisman Trophy and leading the Trojans to back-to-back national title games, winning one. Leinart, who now works for Fox Sports and just weeks ago had to quarantine with the rest of the on-air talent on the network’s college football pregame show, has had enough. In a Twitter post on Sunday night, Leinart said he is ready to move from LA due to the county’s latest move of shutting down restaurants as COVID-19 numbers spike locally and around the country. The Twitterverse responded.
Fox Sports talent removed from broadcast due to COVID-19 concerns
Earlier this month, Fox Sports announced all on-air talent of the college football pregame show Big Noon Kickoff would be out of commission for the weekend’s games.
Host Rob Stone and former USC players Reggie Bush and Matt Leinart, former Notre Dame quarterback Brady Quinn, and former college football coach Urban Meyer, were all absent from the weekend’s show. They were replaced by multiple members of Fox’s NFL Sunday crew, including Charissa Thompson, Terry Bradshaw, and Howie Long, as well as FS1’s Speak for Yourself co-host Emmanuel Acho.
Fox Sports announced the decision to sideline the crew was “out of an abundance of caution” and in accordance with CDC guidance and L.A. County Department of Public Health safety guidelines.
Matt Leinart expresses frustration and wants to leave LA
On Sunday, the L.A. County Department of Public Health announced new guidelines and said it was shutting down all dining at restaurants, breweries, wineries, and bars for at least three weeks starting Wednesday amid a surge in coronavirus cases.
The latest shutdown of dining establishments was not well received by Matt Leinart, who took to Twitter to express his frustration.
“LA just closed all dining INDOOR/OUTDOOR for 3 weeks?,” Leinart wrote. “Can’t wait to move out of this awful place. Ridiculous.”
After deleting his tweet, Leinart later tried to clarify his remarks.
“People going to lose their jobs again. Small business shutting down.”
Twitter sacks Matt Leinart
Despite Matt Leinart’s attempt to clarify his initial comment, the response from the Twitterverse was overwhelmingly critical of his position.
“Imagine being upset that people are trying to make sure that others live,” one person wrote. “Friendly reminder that it costs exactly $0 dollars to be a decent human being,” added another.
While restaurants will be closed for indoor and outdoor dining, delivery and takeout will still be available.
“Matt Leinart should love takeout restaurants anyway. All he has to do is execute a handoff, which is all he’s had to do his entire public life,” one person wrote.
Matt Leinart’s comments come just days after Kelly Stafford, the wife of Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford, criticized the state of Michigan for the restrictions it put in place for the virus and comparing it to a dictatorship.
“Shutting down all these small businesses — things that people have worked their life for — shutting them down again is not the answer, because they will not make it. So once we are able to leave our house, once this dictatorship decides to let us have some freedom, there will be nothing left.”
Stafford later apologized.