Olbermann revealed O'Reilly's "resume padding" in Super Bowl program essay


From the February 7 edition of MSNBC's Countdown with Keith Olbermann:

OLBERMANN: We segue now into our nightly roundup of celebrity and entertainment news, "Keeping Tabs." And it turns out the 2005 Super Bowl was not entirely scandal-free. This year's wasn't about the commercials, the halftime show or even the Philadelphia Eagles' pathetic clock management. It was about the Super Bowl program and Bill O'Reilly. The Fact or Fiction host and noted loofah user wrote the so-called end piece of the score card sold at yesterday's little game. He waxed poetic about the inspiration that his own football career at Marist College in New York provided observing that he once punted a ball backwards. But that, quoting here, "I won the national punting title for my division as a senior." O'Reilly concludes that "I guess you could say the end zone was the beginning of the no-spin zone."

But Mr. O'Reilly has done a little spinning of his own here. Others might call it resume padding. The football office at Marist told me today that football was not a varsity sport there until 1978 -- seven years after O'Reilly graduated. When he played, it was a so-called club sport where players paid all their own expenses, and schedules and, most importantly, statistical record keeping were haphazard.

So when he says he was the top punter in his division in the country in 1970, it does not mean what it sounds like. He was not in the NCAA Division I or II or the smaller-college NAIA Division I or Division II. O'Reilly in Marist played in something called the National Club Football Association. So writing in the Super Bowl program that you won the punting championship in your division would be like me writing in one of my articles in one of the World Series programs that I led the nation's high school baseball players in on-base percentage in 1973.

I did, too. My on-base percentage that season was 1,000. I came to bat once and got hit in the backside with a pitch.

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