03/08/2013 08:26 pm ET Updated Apr 09, 2013

Bill Simmons: 'First Take' Segment With Skip Bayless, Richard Sherman Was 'Embarrassing'

"Just don't watch it," is the advice that ESPN's Bill Simmons offered those people reacting strongly to the latest awkward shouting match on "First Take."

The popular columnist who founded Grantland and served as executive producer of the "30 For 30" film series, Simmons been involved in some of ESPN's more critically acclaimed recent endeavors. He was not impressed by the recent Richard Sherman vs. Skip Bayless segment on "First Take," describing it as "awful and embarrassing to everyone involved."

Sherman, a star cornerback with the Seattle Seahawks, engaged in an on-air battle with Bayless during Thursday's edition of ESPN's controversial debate program and his "I'm better at life than you" barb garnered plenty of attention. Several hours later, Simmons took to Twitter to address the segment and the attention it received.

Earlier in the week, Richard Deitsch of Sports Illustrated put Simmons atop his list of the 10 most powerful people in sports media. After noting his multi-platform success, Deitch wrote that "Simmons has the ear of ESPN president John Skipper."

Will these tweets sway the leader of the Worldwide Leader on "First Take" or perhaps result in some sort of disciplinary action against Simmons? Would any other member of the ESPN family get away with being so direct in criticizing the program?

"It's one thing for this site, or Richard Deitsch or John Koblin, or Neil Best or Richard Sandomir to address the issues of First Take and the damage it does to ESPN's brand," wrote Matt Yoder at Awful Announcing on Friday. "It's quite another when it comes from the most influential voice at ESPN - Bill Simmons."

Could change be coming? Or is "First Take" fulfilling its mission by generating so much attention?



Athletes vs. Skip Bayless