Behind The ScenesHighly Questionable

Bomani Jones says goodbye to Highly Questionable

(L to R) Bomani Jones, Gonzalo Le Batard, Dan Le Batard on the set of Highly Questionable.
(Rodrigo Varela/ESPN Images)

Editor’s note: Bomani Jones ends his four-year stint on Highly Questionable today (4:30 p.m. ET, ESPN). He will continue to host The Right Time with Bomani Jones daily (4-7 p.m. ET) on ESPN Radio as he prepares to launch his new one-hour show with Pablo Torre, coming to ESPN at noon on January 2, 2018. In Bomani’s absence, rotating co-hosts will join Dan Le Batard and Papi on Highly Questionable, beginning with Domonique Foxworth on Monday, June 26. Before his final show, Jones wrote this note about his experience on the show the past four years with the Le Batard’s and the HQ team.

On May 13, 2013, I did my first day of Highly Questionable. I’d appeared via satellite, and even two days in studio, on Dan Le Batard is Highly Questionable, but this was different. I was a co-host now. The name of the show had changed, the third seat would be there daily and we were going to figure this out. Or, at the very least, we were going to do it and hoped someone else figured it out.

He made me better, my father better, the producers better, and the show better. I haven’t met anyone in this business as talented as he is. He’s destined for bigger things than our little show. We were very fortunate to have him at our side for as long as we did.” – Dan Le Batard on Bomani Jones, his Highly Questionable co-host the last four years

What most don’t realize is Dan and I barely knew each other when we started doing the show. I hadn’t met Dan or Gonzalo until a few weeks before I joined the show, when I happened to be in Miami for a few days and stopped by the studio. We were, in effect, strangers who only knew each other from what we’d seen on television. And seeing how Dan couldn’t watch television in the afternoons because he had a drive-time radio show, I knew him from watching years of television and he knew me from the brief segments I shot in the early days of DLHQ.

Then, we decided we’d work on a television show together. That’s not terribly common.

What also isn’t terribly common is someone willing to take his name off the title of his own television show, pull up a chair, and share the spotlight and his platform with someone he barely knew. That’s what Dan did. It was a move that would serve everyone, but that makes it no less remarkable that Dan, a truly legendary figure in this industry, would be so generous with the fruits of his labor to help someone he believed hadn’t been given a deserved opportunity. So he helped create an opportunity himself. We could all use a friend like that and, at that time, we weren’t even friends yet.

Just as uncommon was the kindness of the whole Le Batard family, which is truly its own entity in Miami. Dan’s mother, who is five times more wonderful than the men she lives with, was my realtor. His brother was willing to help me with anything he could. And Papi was warm and happy to see us every day at work, without fail. This worked because both of them were invested in making sure it did, both personally and professionally.

Now, the show itself? I doubt anyone had more fun at work than we did. Erik Rydholm (coordinating producer) and our crew do a fantastic job of making us look better than we are. The show’s framework is there to make us more comfortable, where all we have to do is be ourselves, and they’d build the show around that. They’ve always done that, and we’ve been the winners as a result.

So while I’m ready for what’s next, a show with Pablo Torre starting in 2018, it’s hard to leave HQ. Working here has changed my career and, honestly, changed my life. Now both will change again, but they’re both way better than they used to be. To everyone responsible for that, I say thanks.

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