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The Reflector

The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

Erin Andrews offers insight into world of broadcast

Ivy Rose Ball
Erin Andrews spoke for MSU’s annual Global Lecture Series.

Monday night, aspiring sportscasters and student journalists lined up outside Bettersworth Auditorium, waiting patiently to snag a front row seat to see the speaker of this year’s Global Lecture Series, American sportscaster Erin Andrews.

Each year, the Mississippi State University Student Association works alongside university administration to bring in an influential, career-driven individual to speak to students about the professional world. While this series was tailored to college students, faculty and the general public were also invited to join the free event.

Jackie Mullen, assistant vice president for Student Affairs, was pleased with the Student Association’s selection of such a prominent figure in the sports and media field.

“They decided on Erin Andrews for many reasons. One of which, it’s Women’s History Month, but also, she is just really well-respected and someone in the sports industry that is well-known, who has also been a trailblazer,” Mullen said.

Andrews is best known for her feature and sideline reporting on the “FOX NFL Sunday” show which captures 56.4 million viewers weekly. (Ivy Rose Ball)

Joey Bailey, MSU’s deputy athletics director for strategic initiatives and administration, moderated the Q&A session with Andrews. Sitting on stage, in two comfortable brown chairs, the two delved into Andrews’ life.

Andrews spoke on everything from her early days as a sports reporter and her difficult work-life balance to her NFL clothing line and recent debut as a podcaster.

Fresh out of college, Andrews landed a job as a freelance reporter for FOX Sports Florida and dedicated her time to covering every story she could get her hands on. While many of her friends were focused on getting married and settling down, Andrews was full force ahead, chasing down her dreams.

Even though it meant missing out on weddings and family events, she was determined to keep working until she achieved her definition of success. After an Emmy-nomination, co-hosting ABC’s “Dancing With The Stars” and covering the biggest events in the sports industry, Andrews is still finding different ways to express her creativity and expand her list of accomplishments.

Students hung onto her words in hopes of applying them to their own lives. Moriah Norman, a senior communication major from McDonough, Georgia, said Andrews has been a role model in her life since she was young and was thrilled to listen to her speak.

“One piece of advice I got from her wasn’t something she actually said, but just hearing everything she is involved in, it’s not just sports. I learned that I do not want to just keep myself in one box,” Norman said.

Andrews reminisced about her early ambitions of becoming a sports reporter. After years of sitting on the couch watching games with her dad and listening to him tell stories of all her favorite players, she said that it was he who initially sparked Andrews’ passion for sports and encouraged her to chase her dreams.

“I just said, ‘Dad, I really want to do this for a living. I want to be on television. I want to be a sports broadcaster.’ Not just because I wanted to be on television, but I just loved the games so much,” Andrews said. “I loved the stories that the athletes have to share. I love, you know, all about their competition, what’s made them who they are, and so forth. So, I knew at a pretty young age that I wanted to do that.”

As an NFL reporter for ESPN, and now FOX Sports, Andrews emphasized her love and admiration for her co-workers throughout the years, and especially the people she spends daily life with. She told students of the importance of creating strong relationships in the professional world and always working as a team.

“It’s so huge, I think in anything in your life, whether you’re at home, in the workforce or on a team, just to be on the same page. Spend time together,” Andrews said. “Be around people you enjoy being with.”

Despite a long list of accolades, Andrews said there is much more she hopes to accomplish before laying down her microphone and signing off for good.

More than 100 students piled in the auditorium to listen to Andrews’ advice and raw stories. Mullen was thankful for the turnout of the 2024 Global Lecture Series.

“I think tonight was great. I really thought that she was very down to earth and a great storyteller,” Mullen said. “And I also think that our moderator, Joey Bailey, did a great job of representing Mississippi State to get Erin to tell her story, and I think that’s important. We are big believers at Mississippi State about the importance of telling our story and how that makes an impact in our lives, and to see that from someone we watch on TV, to get to hear her story, I think it was just really unique and different. A lot of people tonight got to really enjoy that.”

As the discussion concluded, the audience cheered and gave thanks to Andrews. However, Student Association President Ellie Herndon had one more gift of gratitude to offer. In keeping with Mississippi State traditions, Erin Andrews was gifted her very own cowbell.

With a smile, Andrews held up the cowbell and rang it proudly for everyone to hear.

About the Contributor
Aubrey Carter
Aubrey Carter, Managing Editor
Aubrey Carter is a junior communication major with a concentration in broadcast & digital journalism from Birmingham, Alabama. She currently serves as the Managing Editor and served as the Sports Editor from 2023 to 2024. [email protected]
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