WMEN-640 dropped host Dan Sileo on Monday, a day after he posted on Twitter that he was offering $1,000 to any University of Miami player who would do something to sideline FSU running back Devonta Freeman in a potential Atlantic Coast Conference championship game between the teams.
Sileo’s tweet read: “In 6 weeks... I will PAY a $1000 BUCKS TO ANY @hurricanesports PLAYER TO TAKES THIS KID OUT. #MHFreeman.” That expression is synonymous with injuring a player.
Sileo, a former UM defensive lineman, was angry because the FSU player was holding up a “U” sign. But Sileo misidentified the player whose image he linked to. It was actually FSU defensive tackle Tim Jernigan.
Shortly after sending that tweet, Sileo said he was joking about the bounty. But UM, FSU and WMEN management weren’t amused.
Never miss a local story.
UM and FSU expressed their concern to WMEN general manager Steve Lapa.
A day later, Lapa dismissed Sileo, who was an independent contractor at the station.
“We don’t support that position,” Lapa said of Sileo’s initial tweet offering a bounty. “The reaction to his tweet was strong. It’s in everyone’s best interests to move forward.”
The station also released a statement saying his actions “have no place in sports.”
After being dropped, Sileo tweeted that he is “shocked over the backlash over a tweet I made concerning an FSU player over the weekend. … My family has death threats from some FSU football fans and I even kept my daughter home from school today.
“Very sad society we live in when somebody actually thinks I would want another kid hurt. Awful. But death threats are real. I have reported all the death threats to police and FBI. I have hired a private cop and he is armed. My family and I are in hiding.”
Lapa said UM did not encourage him to fire Sileo. But UM officials were upset about Sileo’s tweet because any offer of a bounty obviously would violate NCAA rules.
Sileo tweeted that it is “very disappointing to know the University of Miami [led] the charge on this.” He said UM “is a school I bled and won for. I am treated like a dog by them.”
WQAM-560 removed Sileo from its UM postgame show after last season partly because he leveled criticism that the station and university deemed over-the-top and irresponsible. He was fired by WQAM in March after uttering an anti-Semitic remark on the air.
WMEN hired Sileo in September to host from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Marc Eisenberg will fill in during that slot for an indefinite period, Lapa said.