The STAMFORD ADVOCATE has the painful details of Jim Nantz’s divorce proceeding last week, Daniel Tepfer’s lede:
Watching the Jim Nantz divorce trial was like seeing a car crash — you just couldn’t look away. Clutching a pair of reading glasses in his hands, the 50-year-old Nantz teared up at times as he described his wife’s foibles that he claims led up to the breakdown of their marriage
(Lorrie, Jim Nantz divorcing after 26 years of marriage)
Nantz had been married 26 years to wife Lorrie before asking for a divorce last year. The sportscaster cried as a he told Superior Court Judge Howard Owens that his wife’s “excessive spending and lack of support” was the reason for the split.
That lack of support apparently led the 50-year-old Nantz to take up with a 29-year-old girlfriend.
While on the witness stand, Nantz admitted he has a 29-year-old girlfriend who he met while promoting his book, “Always By My Side,” which he wrote about his now deceased father, that was published in May 2008. However, he contended he only started dating his girlfriend because the marriage had “died” more than 10 years ago.
That apparently was news to Mrs. Nantz,who later testified she was still going to marriage counseling until 2008, trying to save their marriage, when Nantz told her he wanted a divorce.
Nantz ’s side of the story included this attempt to paint a dark portrait of his wife:
In 2007, Nantz became the first television broadcaster to host a Super Bowl, the NCAA men’s basketball championship and the Master’s golf tournament in the same year.
“It was the triple crown. People told me I should write down my remembrances of the events, it was that big, but Lorrie didn’t care,” he said.
Nantz cited other instances of Lorrie’s lack of support, but there’s never a justification for adultery.
At stake is Nantz’s $7M per year salary, which includes $4M per year in endorsements for companies like Rolex and Titliest. Nantz has been CBS Sports’ signature voice for decades, and his Mr. Clean image has made him an ideal fit as a celeb spokesman for high-end companies.
Will the news of his divorce, and more specifically, his infidelity affect his career? I wouldn’t think it would with CBS, but the endorsements could be another story. If the New York tabs jump on the “girlfriend” angle, things could possibly get ugly.