Opinion: Erin Andrews represents everything I want to be


Credit: Theo Ghosh

WSPN’s Emily Roberge discusses American sports commentator Erin Andrews and her impact on other aspiring female reporters.

Emily Roberge

Erin Andrews: an icon in the sports reporting world. She has earned the role as a household name as she is in her 10th year reporting for FOX in the NFL. She really has done it all. To some, Erin Andrews represents merely a sideline reporter that flashes across their TV screen every Sunday, interviewing players after their games are over. However, to me, she is so much more than that. She serves as a symbol to everything I want to be when I grow up. Her success gives me motivation on days where I don’t think I can make it in the sports reporting industry, the good old boys club.

When you’re a little kid, everyone always asks you what you want to be when you grow up. Whether it’s dressing for school in a little costume for career day, or joining a parent to bring your kid to work, I’ve always had big hopes for what I wanted to achieve. I think this is really because of my parents. They have always told me to dream big and follow my dreams even if it may seem unconventional or unattainable to others. They never told me what I could or couldn’t do, especially as a female, and for that, I thank them. They are the reason I am so ambitious today; they are giving me the confidence to enter into an industry where I have to work to earn my credibility and voice as a female. That’s what keeps me going.

I’ve always been a crazy, sports-obsessed NFL fan, but it’s a recent interest where I’ve wanted to take up sports reporting for the league. I never really thought much about this career until I did some more research into this profession. My parents told me to take a greater look into it, so I did. Trite as it may be, that’s where I found my calling.

Here is where Erin Andrews comes into play. I always just thought of her solely as a sideline reporter, a job exciting enough in itself, but I was wrong. She may be one of the most versatile reporters, covering everything from Super Bowls and NFC Championships to the World Series, NHL and Dancing with the Stars. When she is not on the field, on the court or on the ice, she is making podcasts with other NFL commentators. In 2019, she even created her own clothing line, WEAR by Erin Andrews. Leading the way for other females, she has broken down the constricted barriers that men in the sports reporting industry put females in. For all that, she inspires me.

The sports reporting industry for females can be a heavily toxic, misogynistic place, and I can understand why people wouldn’t think it’s possible to achieve much if I follow my dream. The industry heavily focuses on the beauty of females, sometimes more than the qualifications of their reporters, which is disgusting. That’s for another conversation. These unrealistic beauty ideals for reporters is something that constantly makes me question whether I want to go into this career field, but the thrill of reporting some of the greatest sports events always pulls me back in.

To all the people down the road who think I cannot achieve this dream: honestly, thank you. It’s these comments and these doubts that push me further and make me want this dream even more. I most likely will not achieve all that Erin Andrews has, and that is okay. She has paved the way for many others and myself to achieve our dreams in a good old boys world, knocking down barriers left and right. I know I’m possibly walking into a ring of fire. I could get burnt, but what’s the harm in trying? I will regret it if I don’t give it a try, and who knows, I could walk out stronger than ever.