Photo courtesy of ESPN
“Never stop being competitive!” UTSA alumna Michelle Beadle advised aspiring Roadrunner sports journalists. Twenty years ago, if you told Beadle that she would host one of the most popular shows on ESPN, she probably would not have believed you.
When she graduated high school in 1994, Beadle was certain that she would be a lawyer. Born in Italy, but a native of Boerne, Texas, Michelle Beadle was a straight “A” student at Boerne High School. She started her college career at UT Austin as a political science major and pre-law student. However, after three years in school she realized that law was not her calling. Beadle took a three-year hiatus from school during which she traveled and worked, doing everything from waiting tables in Austin to breeding Great Danes in Canada.
After three years of uncertainty, Beadle decided it was time to head back to school. She returned to San Antonio to become a Roadrunner and switched her major to communications.
“It was awesome,” Beadle said as she recalled her memories of UTSA. She remembered the teachers always going the extra mile without hesitation to accommodate her hectic work schedule.
“They were great! They were really good about helping me, which not a lot of people would do.” Beadle’s situation was unique in that she already had experience working in the communications field from covering a minor league hockey team.
Beadle’s first big job was interning for the San Antonio Spurs. There, she got her first taste of working as a reporter. “The Spurs gave me this awesome chance to get in front of the camera a couple of times,” said Beadle. The chance the Spurs took on her would set the tone for her entire career, and even today she identifies as a die-hard Spurs fan. After her internship, she worked for TNN (now Spike TV) as a reporter. From TNN reporting, Beadle worked with the Travel Channel, hosting a dating show called “Get Packing”. She broke back into the sports world by landing a job with the YES Network where she conducted interviews and covered the New Jersey Nets.
Her big break came in 2009 as a co-host with Colin Cowherd on the ESPN show, “SportsNation”. According to Beadle, she auditioned for the show on a whim. Beadle’s agent urged her to try out for the show before it had been fully conceptualized.
“You’ve heard ‘no’ so many times by that point that it’s just sort of like, auditions become just normal and you get ready to be rejected,” said Beadle of auditioning. ESPN said “yes,” and from 2009 to 2012, she and Cowherd hosted a sports show like no other. Filled with games and viral videos, the show’s informal and fun delivery of sports news became a fan favorite.
In 2012, Beadle left ESPN to work for NBC where she hosted, “The Crossover” but the show failed to gain momentum and was canceled in the fall of 2013. This past March, Beadle returned to ESPN and SportsNation where she currently works as a co-host alongside Max Kellerman and Marcellus Wiley.
“It’s supposed to be fun,” Beadle advised aspiring sports journalists. “We all have to work…you might as well have something you don’t dread getting up to do.” She continued, “Find something that you’re passionate about and enjoy doing.”
“If you want to be in front of the camera, if you want to be behind the camera, just practice.” She continued: “You can go to school, you can watch TV, you can read a million books, but [it won’t matter] until you get in front of that camera and just really get kind of comfortable with yourself.”
Catch Beadle on Sportsnation weekdays at 2 p.m. on ESPN 2.