ESPN Apologizes for Sugar Bowl Breast Incident Video During Live Broadcast

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In an unexpected turn of events during ESPN’s live broadcast of the Sugar Bowl, viewers were shocked when explicit footage of a woman exposing her breast on Bourbon Street made its way onto their screens. The incident occurred during a clip shown while returning from a commercial break in the highly anticipated matchup between the Washington Huskies and the Texas Longhorns. The network, known for its extensive sports coverage, promptly issued an apology for the NSFW footage, acknowledging that it should never have been broadcast to millions of viewers.

Sugar Bowl Breast Incident Video
Sugar Bowl Breast Incident Video

The Context

Bourbon Street, a renowned and iconic area in New Orleans, is a common choice for TV crews to showcase during broadcasts of major events hosted in the city. Given that the College Football Playoff contest between the No. 2 and 3 seeds took place at the Superdome in New Orleans, Bourbon Street seemed like a fitting backdrop for the broadcast’s b-roll footage.

The Incident: During the broadcast, as the camera panned down Bourbon Street, it captured a woman engaging in a negotiation for a set of beads by exposing her breast. The unexpected and explicit nature of the footage left football fans and viewers stunned. The incident quickly went viral, circulating on social media platforms and drawing attention to the oversight in the network’s production.

Sugar Bowl Breast Incident Video
Sugar Bowl Breast Incident Video

ESPN’s Response

ESPN took responsibility for the incident, with Bill Hofheimer, the network’s PR representative, releasing a statement to the Associated Press. The statement expressed regret over the occurrence and offered a sincere apology for the video airing during the telecast. The acknowledgment of the mistake and the prompt apology aimed to address the concerns of viewers who were taken aback by the unexpected and explicit content.

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Fan Reactions

While not all fans were outraged by the incident, the response on social media varied. Some found humor in the situation, while others criticized ESPN for the lack of foresight in selecting Bourbon Street as part of the broadcast. Suggestions were made for future broadcasts to feature safer landmarks, such as the St. Louis Cathedral, to avoid similar incidents.


The Sugar Bowl breast incident on Bourbon Street during ESPN’s live broadcast serves as a reminder of the challenges in showcasing iconic city landmarks without anticipating the potential for explicit content. ESPN’s swift acknowledgment of the mistake and public apology reflect the network’s commitment to addressing viewer concerns. As sports broadcasting continues to navigate the balance between capturing the essence of host cities and ensuring family-friendly content, incidents like these underscore the importance of careful consideration in the selection of broadcast footage.