In the Booth

It bothers me that blogs and websites such as Sports by Brooks measure a woman by their “hotness,” it’s degrading. Erin Andrews, as I’ve mentioned before, is one of the most popular female sportscasters today, but blogs like Brooks’ don’t measure all of the prep work she does for a college football game, merely her sex appeal.

The sportscasting industry doesn’t condone sexism and don’t impose any formal restrictions on women having an important role in a telecast.  Men, however, do most of the decision making which seems to result in more male sportscasters, but women need to be heard on the local and national broadcast booths. It’s a move that sports radio has made, so why should television be so far behind?

Howard Cosell in his book “I Never Played The Game” used the phrase Jockocracy.  Cosell talked about many former athletes who wind up in the broadcasting booth simply because they played the game.  He also said that most of them don’t have the communication skills to be on the air.   There are women who are far more qualified to be in the booth, but will never get a chance because they never played the game.  There is one exception to this rule: Doris Burke who is an analyst and sideline reporter on ESPN’s college basketball. I respect her accomplishment, but I wish that this was the norm rather than the exception. Women should get more chances in the broadcast booth.

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