Stephanie Ruhle’s “Rules”

Kent Anderson
4 min readSep 2, 2023

Pro tip: When you’re number one on Keith Olbermann’s “Worst Person’s in the World,” list on his Countdown podcast and your name isn’t O’Reilly, Trump, Rudy, Meadows, Boebert, Santos, McCarthy or Greene, you’re being singled out for either your stupidity or in deep doo-doo. Or both.

Which brings us to today’s installment, where Olbermann mixes facts and snark as only he can and gives us yet another example of mostly smart people stepping over the line. The latest case, as reported by the Wall Street Journal, involves MSNBC anchor and host of The 11th Hour, Stephanie Ruhle and her unusual relationship with Under Armour founder and then CEO Kevin Plank.

Stephanie Ruhle, interviewing Kevin Plank in 2014/Bloomberg

These allegations come amid a lawsuit brought by former and current shareholders of UA concerning stock manipulation and withholding financial disclosures, currently being heard in Federal Court in New York City. The suit alleges that Under Armour shifted numbers from one quarter to the next to hide or under-inflate losses being incurred by the company.

For the uninitiated, Under Armour is a high-end apparel manufacturer based in Baltimore. Plank founded the company in 1996 while still a football player at the University of Maryland (yes, they play football there). From its modest beginnings in his grandmother’s basement, Under Armour has become a worldwide brand and Plank a billionaire.

Which, of course begs the question, what was he doing with Ms. Ruhle? A private phone, email account, secret recordings and encoded texts messages over negative earnings in 2015–16? With a reporter who used to be a trader on the Exchange? From the WSJ:

“Plank and Ruhle corresponded regularly and at all hours, according to the documents. In 2016, Plank sent Ruhle what he described as a secret recording he made of a conversation he just had with another top executive at Under Armour. Earlier that year, the then-Bloomberg anchor advised Under Armour to give internal data to Bloomberg’s competitors to manage negative publicity, the court documents show.”

Both Plank and Ruhle deny any wrongdoing and the company and Plank both called Ruhle an ‘outside advisor.’ Yes, and I am the Czar of all the Russias.

Plank, who stepped down as CEO in 2019, said in his deposition “She’s a confidant. I would give her…

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Kent Anderson

Purveyor of Truth and Facts. Lifelong Detroiter. Journalist. Loves good TV, sports, friends and family. Mostly. Also: https://rollingwheelie.substack.com/