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NEW YORK CBS analyst Doug Gottlieb got coverage of the NCAA tournament s Sweet 16 off to an awkward start, saying he was there to bring the white man s perspective to the network s pregame show.

Speaking on a panel with four African-American men, Gottlieb made his comment Thursday during a pre-game segment before Marquette beat Miami, sparking criticism on Twitter that his words were inappropriate.

I don t know why you guys ask me, I m just here to bring diversity to this set, give kind of the white man s perspective, he said during the show. Fellow analyst Greg Anthony made a face after Gottlieb s remark and Kenny Smith said he had jumped right into it.

Gottlieb was still on set Thursday night and unavailable for comment, but issued a statement through CBS. It was not a smart thing to say and I apologize, he said. Fellow analyst Charles Barkley stood by Gottlieb on the broadcast during a break in the games later in the night.

I know this has nothing to do with the game; I want to say something about Doug Gottlieb, Barkley said. He made a joke earlier tonight and people are going crazy. All those idiots on Twitter, which I would never ever do, all you people at home who ve got no life and are talking bad about Doug Gottlieb, get a life. It s over with. It s no big deal.

Photo credit: CBS

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