Although we are in 2016, many armchair quarterbacks and bleacher bums still don’t necessarily give women’s sports leagues, teams and players the time of day when it comes to professional sports. Today’s fan has seen a rapid increase in female sideline reporters and sports anchors on your favorite nightly highlight show. These ladies and the others who did not make the final cut are more than just eye candy, they continue to show their knowledge and understanding of the game on various levels.
We all know that sex sells and it definitely holds true in the world of sports, consider ESPN The Body, SI Swimsuit Issue and the vast amount of cheerleaders that capture the attention of every warm blooded sports fan around the world. However, on top of that, today’s female sportscasters have become more confident in their delivery and approach of the games they cover. All of the major networks, ESPN, TSN, Sportsnet, Fox Sports, ABC, NBC and CBS have incorporated numerous females to cover pre, post and in game interviews as well as your nightly highlight recap shows. At first it there were just a select few ladies who would partner up with a more well known male analyst or broadcaster, but more and more we find the females paired up together to bring us up to speed in the world of sports.
Honestly cutting this list down to 15 does not do any justice to the talented and beautiful women who did not make the squad, as there is no right or wrong and it wouldn't exactly be fair to judge them numerically, so if you feel the need to rank them, please just roll with 1A, 1B, 1C etc. If your favorite female sportscaster did not make the roster, please feel welcome to add her to the list, as there is no right or wrong choices when it comes to selecting this team.
15 Molly Qerim
For those who haven’t yet started their work day, the opportunity to eat breakfast each morning with Molly Qerim is one of the finer things in life. But that is about as far as one is going to get with the brunette beauty, as she is currently in a relationship with former NBA guard and current ESPN and NBA analyst Jalen Rose. Qerim, who is the host of First Take on ESPN, has sat alongside a few of the bigger names in sports media, including Stephen A. Smith, Skip Bayless and Max Kellerman. Before her career took off at ESPN, Qerim worked for CBS where she was a jack of all trades, covering the gridiron, the hardwood and the links. If those major sporting events weren’t enough for her resume, Qerim can also add to her resume that she was the host of UFC Live on ESPN.
14 Erin Andrews
What hasn’t the California native done? Hockey, check! Andrews kicked off her career covering the NHL on the Sunshine Network and ESPN. Baseball, check! ESPN had the blonde reporting on the College World Series, the Little League World Series and eventually the MLB. Football, check! “The Mothership” employed Andrews to work the sidelines of their ESPN College Football broadcasts. After leaving ESPN, Andrews would continue to be one of America’s favorite sports hotties as she continued to cover a wide range of sporting events for Fox Sports. Need further proof of her hotness? How about a back to back spot on Maxim’s top 100 in 2010 and 2011. Unfortunately for Andrews, despite all her efforts to bring legitimacy for women working in the world of sports, she may still be most famous for the peephole nude video that was shot by a long time stalker.
13 Rosalyn Gold-Onwude
“Ros” makes tuning into basketball games a little more enjoyable for fans watching at home. Whether it is for ESPN, MSG or the PAC 12 Network, the former Stanford grad has turned her passion for hoops into a career and has done terrific work in the broadcasting field. Following a four year career with the Cardinal, Gold-Onwude continued her basketball journey as a point guard on the Nigerian National basketball team searching for a spot in the 2012 Summer Olympics. If her commitments to the three networks weren’t enough, Ros can also be found along the sidelines of the San Francisco 49ers games and is almost equally as popular as Steph Curry during the Golden State Warriors games, which is really saying something.
12 Renee Paquette
For those who don’t think that the WWE classifies as a sport, than you are missing out on the bubbly 31 year old. The Score, which was bought out by Rogers Sportsnet (but who cares), hosted a weekly talk show, Right After Wrestling recapping and debating the world of“sports entertainment. In 2012, the WWE liked what they saw in the Canadian broadcaster and signed her to a contract as a backstage interviewer. Going by the stage name Renee Young, Paquette has worked her way up the WWE ladder, providing commentary on NXT and WWE Superstars, along with the WWE PPV pre-shows. 2015 became a breakout year for the native of Toronto, as she not only became the host of Unfiltered with Renee Young, but it was also announced that she was in a relationship with WWE superstar and main event constant Dean Ambrose. Lucky guy!
11 Natasha Staniszewski
This 37 year old beauty can be found most nights as part of the SportCentre team on TSN (yup, that’s right another Canadian on the list!). Growing up in Edmonton, the City Of Champions, Natasha was a fan of the Edmonton Oilers dynasty in the mid/late 80s and also had a passion for playing sports herself. After rethinking her career aspirations, Staniszewski focused on pursuing a future in sports broadcasting, one that would find her bouncing around the Canadian provinces for a number of years, working for different CTV affiliates. Luckily for those who live above the 49th Parallel, Staniszewski joined the TSN team in 2011 and, along with Kate Beirness, became the first female duo to host the show on a regular basis.
10 Melanie Collins
A Sports Journalism major from Penn State, Collins has quickly risen in the ranks of hot sportscasters for one reason or another. This 30 year old beauty has made her way through the major sports networks in a short amount of time. Starting with the Big Ten Network, Collins turned being a freelance reporter into a position with NBA-TV as a correspondent and anchor for the hoops network. From there, Collins face would grace the screen of coverage during major sporting events such as the Olympics, Super Bowl, World Series and World Cup. As an avid snowboarder and golfer, Collins has also expanded her broadcasting avenues into the world of entertainment for E! News.
9 Michelle Beisner-Buck
If you love football, chances are you have set your eyes on one of the most attractive NFL analysts/reporters in the industry. ESPN, ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX have all welcomed Beisner-Buck as part of their sports staffing at one point or another throughout her career. A former cheerleader with the Denver Broncos, Beisner-Buck has been around the game in one capacity or another, including if you want to stretch it out, a role in the football themed movie Any Given Sunday. Sadly for warm blooded fans, Beisner ended up hyphenating her name when she married NFL sportscaster Joe Buck. Guess game really does recognize game.
8 Erin Sharoni
She may not have the mainstream following that others on this list do, but don’t let that stand in the way that Sharoni belongs on this list. With a resume that states major networks like CBS and NBC, Sharoni can also add in stints on Showtime and SB Nation. Fans may think that the 35 year old just reads a teleprompter, but her passion for sports extends well beyond the screen as her background includes being a U.S. Olympic certified swim coach, a personal trainer and an avid surfer, snowboarder and skydiver. The New Yorker isn’t just about sports though, as she not only dabbles in DJing, but also has a history working in finance and currently is the US Deputy Editor of DJ Mag. A little something for everyone!
7 Jenn Brown
This 35 year old Florida native turned her passion for sports and a University Of Florida softball career into being one of the most recognized names among female sportscasters. Maybe you remember seeing her early in her career on the short lived ABC show, The Superstars. Or possibly you know her from her work along the sidelines of ESPN’s NCAA, NFL or MLB coverage? Or maybe for fight fans it was during a UFC, MMA or Pro Boxing broadcast? Or could it have been during the Winter X Games? Or (yes, apparently there are a lot of options) could it be during the NBC hit show American Ninja Warrior? Sadly for all those who dream of one day having the chance, Brown appears to be happily married with one son on the roster and another on the way next spring.
6 Kristen Ledlow
Hoop fans have more than one reason to tune into NBA Inside Stuff and it isn’t Grant Hill. After working for a number of different sports affiliates early in her career, Ledlow became a sports radio personality on ESPN and CBS. After some time away from the airwaves, Ledlow found herself with an offer to co-host the NBA TV show with the former NCAA and NBA star. Don’t think that it is just her good looks that got her gigs, Ledlow grew up playing a variety of sports throughout high school and university, including basketball, volleyball, track and cross country. Alright, maybe her good looks had something to do with it as well, as the 28 year old stunner was named Miss Capital City USA, but one has to think that the higher ups at NBA-TV had more in mind than that when they hired Ledlow as the only female on the network staff.
5 Sage Steele
As the host of ESPN’s NBA Countdown, Steele made a number of stops throughout Indiana, Florida and Baltimore sports stations before hitting it lucky with a spot at Fox Sports and eventually ESPN and ABC. After covering the major sports in the previously mentioned stops, Steele joined the SportsCenter crew in 2007 before turning into the full time host of NBA Countdown alongside Jalen Rose, Chauncey Billups and Tracy McGrady. The 43 year old mother of three and former army brat has become one of the most recognizable and knowledgeable female sportscasters in her time with the Worldwide Leader In Sports, evident by the increased duties of being named the lead host of their newest program, SportsCenter on the Road. Just so you don’t think that Steele’s world revolved completely around sports, ABC named her the co-host of the 2017 Miss America Competition. Beauty showcasing beauty.
4 Leeann Tweeden
If we can get past the fact that she used to work at Hooters as well as posing for Playboy (let’s take a second to reel back in those who are frantically searching for pics) and move on to her sports career (still waiting for those who are searching her pictorial history). Tweeden kicked off her sports related career as a cast member on Fox Sports Network’s The Best Damn Sports Show Period. From there she moved over to the SPEED Network covering the NASCAR circuit, something that was familiar to her, due to her family’s racing background. After spending some time with NBC, Tweeden returned to Fox as part of their MLB and UFC team. Tweeden also currently co-hosts a daily radio show on AM 570 LASports. Not bad for someone who started out serving wings and beer.
3 Lindsay Czarniak
A native of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, Czarniak grew up taking after her father, who was a reporter for the local newspaper. She was always hugely into sports, playing a variety of sports in high school, like lacrosse and field hockey. Lindsay’s first major break came in 2005 as a sports anchor/reporter for The George Michaels Sports Machine. From there Czarniak covered a variety of sporting events, including the 2006 and 2008 Olympic Games, NASCAR and Poker events. In 2011, ESPN offered the now 38 year old an chair as a SportsCenter anchor, a gig that she has held either with a co-host or solo ever since. She also made some history in 2013, as the first woman to ever host the telecast for Indianapolis 500. Great work!
2 Alex Curry
A born and raised California girl, Curry not only shines on TV, but she had her moment in the spotlight as an athlete herself, helping lead the San Diego State Aztecs to a national championship in 2006. Curry’s face has graced a number of big time networks, including NBC Sports Network, Fox Sports West and the Big Ten Network. Whether she is on the soccer pitch, the baseball diamond or the sidelines of the beach volleyball court, Curry not only has the looks, but just as importantly the knowledge and history of sports that proves she deserves to be in the top 15 of female sportscasters.
1 Erin Hawksworth
Canada gets to claim rights to this beautiful sportscaster, even though she grew up in Washington. Born in Vancouver, BC, Hawksworth went to Arizona State University and graduated from the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism, so you best believe she knows her stuff. Following her first gig at a local affiliate in Dallas, Texas, Hawksworth teamed up with the Fox circuit in Boston and Seattle for a couple of years before returning to Canada as part of the Rogers Sportsnet crew. Currently fans can catch Hawksworth on CNN as part of the World Sports coverage. On top of her great journalism work, she's always appeared in commercials, TV shows and movies, proving she can really do it all!
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