U.S. Press Freedom Tracker

CBS journalist shoved by University of Colorado football coach

Incident Details

Date of Incident
October 2, 2021
Boulder, Colorado


Public figure
Was the journalist targeted?
October 2, 2021

A CBS4 Denver photographer was shoved by the University of Colorado’s head football coach after the team’s game on Oct. 2, 2021, at Folsom Field, in Boulder, Colorado.

In a video posted to Twitter, the unnamed CBS4 journalist captured the moment head coach Karl Dorrell shoved the camera down while he jogged off the football field.

CBS4 did not respond to a request for comment but reported that the photographer, who has covered sports for 25 years and had the appropriate press credentials to be on the field at the time of the incident, did nothing to incite the reaction from Dorrell. CBS Denver’s vice president and general manager Tim Wieland criticized Dorrell’s behavior, calling it “unacceptable and unprofessional.”

Dorrell was not asked about the incident and did not mention it during his postgame press conference, as reported by the AP.

Later that day, the school’s athletic director, Rick George, took to Twitter to issue an apology on behalf of Dorrell, stating, “We treat journalists with respect and apologize for falling short of that today.”

The following morning, after receiving criticism on social media for not addressing the incident personally, Dorrell issued his own statement on the school’s athletics page, apologizing to the photographer and attributing his reaction to his team’s fourth consecutive loss.

“I want to apologize for the incident at the end of our game Saturday. We do value the media and the coverage they provide for our program, and this was strictly in the heat of the moment,” the statement said. “That’s not who I am, and I hope people who have known me through the years do realize that. I did reach out and spoke directly this morning to the videographer from CBS-4 and personally apologized to him.”

University of Colorado’s athletic director did not respond to an emailed request for comment.

The U.S. Press Freedom Tracker catalogues press freedom violations in the United States. Email tips to [email protected].