Miss Alabama 2012 Katherine Webb was thrust into the spotlight Monday night, simply for being the hot girl in the stands cheering for her boyfriend, Alabama State quarterback AJ McCarron during his championship football game.
The beauty queen caught the attention of the cameras — and captivated ESPN announcer Brent Musburger, who enthusiastically remarked about her beauty and set Twitter abuzz. Some observers believed it was a harmless compliment, while others thought it was “creepy.”
Two days after becoming a Webb sensation, the 23-year-old model says she thinks Musburger has been treated unfairly.
“I think the media has been really unfair to him,” Webb said Wednesday when she appeared on the “Today” show.
“I think that if he would have said that we were hot or sexy or made any derogatory statements like that, I think that would have been a little bit different,” she told Matt Lauer. “But the fact that he said we were beautiful and gorgeous, I don’t see why any woman wouldn’t be flattered by that.”
Musburger, 73, has been getting heat for gushing over Miss Alabama on-air during Monday night’s BSC game between Alabama State and Notre Dame. When the college football game became a blowout (Alabama won, 42-14), the broadcasters had to find something else to discuss to fill the boredom.
“Wow! I tell you, you quarterbacks, you get all the good-looking women! What a beautiful woman!” Musburger said. Then he advised young men that’s the way to get the pretty girls. “So if you’re a youngster at Alabama, start getting the football out and throw it around the backyard with pops.”
Soon after, the Internet exploded and Webb gained thousands and thousands of new Twitter followers within hours (it’s up to nearly 225,000 and counting), and coincidentally, she met McCarron on Twitter.
“I just couldn’t believe it,” Webb said when she first realized she stole the show during the National Championship Football Game.
The controversy over the comments led ESPN to apologize late Tuesday, issuing this statement:
“We always try to capture interesting storylines and the relationship between an Auburn grad who is Miss Alabama and the current Alabama quarterback certainly met that test. However, we apologize that the commentary in this instance went too farm and Brent understands that.”
But Webb herself wasn’t offended by all the fuss and said the public apology was unnecessary.
“Of course I appreciate it but, at the same time, I don’t think that I needed an apology,” Webb explained. “I’m flattered at all the attention and I’m humbled. But the same time I think we need to kind of draw back our focus to who the real winners are.”
Webb graduated from Auburn University (Alabama’s rival) in 2011 with a business degree and now lives in Los Angeles.
Never one to pass up a HUGE opportunity, Donald Trump has offered Webb a spot on the judging panel at the Miss America pageant.