Stephen A. Smith is one of the most prominent figures in sports media, where he stars on ESPN’s First Take and NBA Countdown along with hosting The Stephen A. Smith Show.
Smith has risen to stardom within the sports journalism world due to his brash takes on everyone from LeBron James to the Dallas Cowboys in addition to his occasionally controversial comments while on air.
While fans flock to Smith’s social media to hear his latest rants and retorts on anything sports related, the talking head has managed to keep his personal life out of the public eye, for the most part, at least.
When the sportscaster is asked about his love life, he typically offers the same response: “it’s none of your business.”
Stephen Anthony Smith was born in the Bronx and raised in Queens, New York. Smith was raised by his mother, Janet Smith and his father, who managed a hardware store. He has four older sisters, and a half-brother. Smith also had a younger brother, Basil, who passed away in a car accident when Smith was just 25.
Smith attended Thomas Edison High School in Queens, before enrolling at the Fashion Institute of Technology. He then received a basketball scholarship from Winston-Salem State University. While a member of the team, Smith wrote an article for the school newspaper detailing why head coach Clarence Gaines should retire.
Sports Media Career
Smith started his professional career as a sports journalist in print media, joining the Winston-Salem Journal as a writing clerk. He then worked as a writer for the Greensboro News and Record as well as the New York Daily News. Smith then held a position as a writer for The Philadelphia Inquirer as a general sports columnist from 1994-2007 until the Inquirer cut ties with him.
In addition to his work as a writer, Smith also worked as a radio host, with his radio show for WEPN in New York City getting picked up by ESPN Radio in 2007. He worked as an on-air contributor for Fox Sports Radio in 2009 and became a Fox Sports Radio morning show host in 2010.
On his radio show, Smith accurately predicted that LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh would sign with the Miami Heat. Smith returned to ESPN from 2011-2012, but left again for Sirius XM Radio in 2013.
While Smith worked his way up the ranks through his work on radio, he truly became a star as a television personality. Smith is currently the co-host of First Take aongside Molly Qerim, having started in the role back in 2012 when it was him and Skip Bayless on screen. His former First Take co-host, Max Kellerman, left the program in August 2021.
Smith appears as a guest on various ESPN television segments, including Pardon the Interruption, Jim Rome is Burning and SportsCenter. The NBA analyst’s first opportunity in television came in 2005 when he hosted ESPN’s hour-long talk show, Quite Frankly With Stephen A. Smith. He also helps out with the network’s NBA Finals coverage.
Stephen A. Smith Personal Life
While Stephen A. Smith is not currently married, the 53-year-old was once engaged, as he revealed in an interview with GQ. While he refused to offer any details into the relationship, he did disclose that he has two daughters whom are one-year apart in age. They were 11 and 12 years old at the time of the interview.
Smith told GQ that his daughters need his permission to watch him on First Take in case he “feels like going off.”
Although Smith is best known for his work in sports, he’s also made some appearances as an actor, featuring in a cameo role on an episode of the ABC soap opera General Hospital, and also having a part in the Chris Rock movie I Think I Love My Wife.
He’s also featured in commercials for the beef jerky brand Oberto.
Stephen A. Smith Net Worth
Smith’s career has featured some controversial moments, including his comments regarding former NFL running back Ray Rice and his remarks about Ayesha Curry, the wife of Golden State Warriors star Stephen Curry.
Despite the controversies, he’s managed to remain a mainstay in the sports media limelight and will continue to go off on entertaining rants so long as there’s a market for it.
His personal life, however, will seemingly always remain somewhat of a mystery.