He hasn’t even hosted his first official episode of Jeopardy yet.
But Mike Richards is already in scalding hot water.
Earlier this week, an article on the website The Ringer delved into Richards’ past as the host of a podcast called The Randumb Show in 2013 and 2014.
At the time, the program was touted as a behind-the-scene look at his then-workplace The Price Is Right.
Throughout the podcast’s 41-episode run, Richards made an endless array of inappropriate comments about women.
In one 2014 clip, for example, Richards referred to his podcast co-host and former assistant Beth Triffon a “booth ho” and a “booth slut” when discussing her work as a model at the CES trade show.
Another instance involved Richards calling Triffon’s female friends “really frumpy and overweight” after seeing a picture of the women in their one-piece swimsuits at a lake.
Despite Triffon saying that “no one’s overweight” in the picture, Richards hammered his point home, insisting: “They look fat and not good in the picture. It’s bad.”
In addition to offensive comments about women, The Ringer reported Richards used a derogatory term for little people and a slur for people with mental disabilities during conversations on the podcast.
The expose prompted Richards to issue a lengthy apology on Wednesday.
“It is humbling to confront a terribly embarrassing moment of misjudgment, thoughtlessness, and insensitivity from nearly a decade ago,” Richards said in a read by The Hollywood Gossip.
“Looking back now, there is no excuse, of course, for the comments I made on this podcast and I am deeply sorry.”
Just a couple weeks ago, Richards was chosen as the replacement for Alex Trebek on the syndicated, daily version of Jeopardy.
He had been serving as executive producer at the time of this selection, creating a controversy in and of itself that the process may have been rigged.
“The podcast was intended to be a series of irreverent conversations between longtime friends who had a history of joking around.
“Even with the passage of time, it’s more than clear that my attempts to be funny and provocative were not acceptable, and I have removed the episodes,” Richards continued.
“My responsibilities today as a father, husband, and a public personality who speaks to many people through my role on television means I have substantial and serious obligations as a role model, and I intend to live up to them.”
No one from Jeopardy or Sony Pictures Television has yet commented on this scandal.
The above mea culpa is the second apology Richards has issued this month.
Prior to the announcement of his Jeopardy hosting gig, he denied allegations of workplace discrimination during his time as producer of The Price Is Right, including a claim that he told model Brandi Cochran when she revealed she was pregnant,:
“Go figure, I fire five models. What are the odds one of the ones that I keep gets pregnant?”
Cochran sued the producers at FremantleMedia North America and The Price Is Right Productions in 2012, winning more than $7 million in damages.
The decision was overturned the next year and settled out of court.
“I know firsthand how special it is to be a parent. It is the most important thing in the world to me,” Richards has said.
“I would not say anything to disrespect anyone’s pregnancy and have always supported my colleagues on their parenting journeys.
“I am very proud of my time on The Price Is Right and Let’s Make a Deal.
“During my tenure, our female cast members welcomed seven beautiful children. We embraced and celebrated each pregnancy and birth both in front of and behind the camera.
“It was a joy to watch their families grow and highlight their happiness as part of the show.”