She Just Became The First Female Sports Broadcaster To Call A Nationally Televised NFL Game

"Every woman I know in this business worked hard so we can talk about sports, not talk about us talking about sports."

Giving play-by-play updates and analysis about NFL games on TV for a national audience has been a man's world — until now. Beth Mowins, a famed sports broadcaster, made history last night as the first woman to call a nationally televised NFL game on ESPN's Monday Night Football.


During the second of the September 11 doubleheader, for the game between the Denver Broncos and the Los Angeles Chargers, Mowins made this milestone. While this is the first time a woman has called an NFL game for national TV, Gayle Sierens is the first woman to have done play-by-play for a Seattle Seahawks and Kansas City Chiefs game back in 1987, but that was broadcast regionally. Either way, this marks 30 years since a woman was in a position similar to what these two ladies have accomplished — too long considering they're entirely capable.

Mowins has been a staple on ESPN covering various NCAA sporting events, but now she is leaping from college-level sports to professional-level sports. Her big debut was met with people pointing out how historic it was and Mowins getting some love from a slew of her colleagues — with Sierens, whom she befriend years ago, being among the most noteworthy.

Yahoo points out that opportunities are scant for women in terms of sports broadcasting and the list of female sports broadcasters is embarrassingly short. This all, it should be noted, being the norm even though the NFL estimates that 45 percent of its fan base is female. The possible (yet quite unsubstantiated) reasons for not having more women in this capacity are that it may alienate viewers, it tends to draw hate on social media, and there aren't as many qualified applicants.

With all of this hubbub, Mowins is already inspiring a new generation much like Sierens did.

"You highlight this moment with the hope that, in the future, more and more women have these opportunities and it won't be such a significant deal," Mowins told Bleacher Report. "Every woman I know in this business worked hard so we can talk about sports, not talk about us talking about sports. Ultimately, that's the goal. When the game starts, it's just a game."

Outside of what Mowins accomplished, last night's game makes the history books for another reason. According to ESPN, we saw two Black NFL coaches make their head coaching debut in the same game with Broncos coach Vance Joseph and Chargers coach Anthony Lynn.

The best news of all of this, though, is that Mowins won't be a one-off like Sierens was and is already slated to call more NFL games on national TV later this season, per Sports Illustrated.

Cover image via @ESPNPR / Twitter


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