Kevin Kietzman, a Kansas State alumnus and longtime sports radio host in Kansas City, Missouri, remains indefinitely suspended after suggesting during a broadcast earlier this week that Andy Reid’s family life is evidence that the Chiefs coach “is not good at fixing people.”
In a discussion about suspended Kansas City wide receiver Tyreek Hill on Monday, Kietzman said it was proof Reid “does not have a great record” with players from troubled backgrounds or those who run into issues with authorities.
“He doesn’t. Discipline is not his thing,” Kietzman said. “It did not work out particularly well in his family life, and that needs to be added to this as we’re talking about the Chiefs. He wasn’t real great at that, either. He’s had a lot of things go bad on him: family and players. He is not good at fixing people.”
Many folks assumed Kietzman, whose show airs on Sports Radio 810 WHB, was referencing the death of Reid’s oldest son, Garrett, who died of a heroin overdose in 2012. Kietzman said in an email to Awful Announcing and on Twitter that he actually was talking about Reid’s history of choosing to work with people, including Garrett and another son, who have troubled pasts.
But Union Broadcasting, which owns and operates the station, announced Tuesday that Kietzman would be taken off the air “until further notice as we review this matter.” The company also issued an apology to Reid, the Chiefs and the station’s listeners. About two hours later, Kietzman tweeted out a recorded statement in which he also apologized for his comments.
“What I said has been interpreted by many as hurtful, insensitive and cold. And in hearing from listeners and relistening to what I said, I can understand why,” said Kietzman, who is listed on the WHB staff directory as vice president-sports director and identifies himself as a partner at Union Broadcasting on his LinkedIn profile.
“I can barely find the words to even say out loud what some people believed I was trying to convey. I never mentioned and would never, ever suggest that Coach Reid was at fault for his son’s tragic death. Or that any parent would be at fault for such an unspeakable tragedy. ... Please know that this was not my intention and was not even on my mind when I made the comments that I did.”
Kietzman also noted that he reached out to apologize to Reid personally, but was told the coach was not available.
During an interview with Fox 4 and KCTV-5 Wednesday night, Kietzman indicated he would return to the air Friday. However, WHB president Chad Boeger told The Kansas City Star differently in an email Thursday afternoon.
“Kevin continues to be off the air,” Boeger wrote, “until further notice.”