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Mike Richards to undergo sensitivity training, stay on as 'Jeopardy!' EP

Richards recently stepped down as host of the daytime show after apologizing for controversies involving past lawsuits and sexist comments made on a podcast.
/ Source: TODAY

Despite stepping down as host, Mike Richards is slated to stay on at “Jeopardy!” as executive producer and undergo sensitivity training, TODAY has learned.

On Aug. 20, Richards resigned from hosting duties of the daytime show after apologizing for controversies involving past lawsuits and sexist comments made on a podcast.

In an email to TODAY on Wednesday, Richards’ spokesperson confirmed he will undergo sensitivity training.

In an internal memo sent to "Jeopardy!" staff last Friday and obtained by TODAY, Richards apologized and announced his resignation as host.

"It pains me that these past incidents and comments have cast such a shadow on Jeopardy! as we look to start a new chapter," Richards said in the memo. “…Over the last several days it has become clear that moving forward as host would be too much of a distraction for our fans and not the right move for the show.”

He also apologized for the “unwanted negative attention” caused by the controversies and “for the confusion and delays this is now causing.”

Richards was supposed to step into the role of host with new episodes slated to begin airing on Sept. 13. A source close to the show told NBC News that five episodes were taped on Thursday prior to his departure and will air as scheduled.

Both Richards and a spokesperson for Sony Pictures Television confirmed he will stay on as executive producer of the longtime gameshow.

"We support Mike’s decision to step down as host," the company said last week in a statement. "We were surprised this week to learn of Mike’s 2013/2014 podcast and the offensive language he used in the past. We have spoken with him about our concerns and our expectations moving forward.”

Richards came under fire after it was announced he would serve as the syndication host of the longtime show.

Allegations against him surfaced from two discrimination lawsuits following his time working at "The Price is Right." He was not a defendant in one of the lawsuits and was dropped as a defendant in the other one.

Then last week, The Ringer did a story detailing sexist comments Richards had made on a podcast he hosted, "The Randumb Show," in 2013-14. The podcast has since been taken down and NBC News has not listened to the original audio.