How we receive our sports coverage is often as influential as the outcomes of a sporting event itself. From locker rooms to sidelines, radio to print, in today's society sports reporters are constantly present.
This article takes a look at 10 ESPN personalities who help shape our wide world of sports and focuses on how they got where they are.
I have attempted to compile a list of diverse personalities that report through many differing media channels and modes.
Let me know what you think, and enjoy.
Kenneth Wheelock Mayne joined the ESPN network in 1994 as a SportSmash anchor for ESPN2 and quickly moved to the main ESPN network. He gained fame by replacing Keith Olbermann as a co-anchor of the 11 p.m. SportsCenter with Dan Patrick.
Mayne starred in ESPN's first scripted web series, Mayne Street, and currently hosts ABC and ESPN's horse-racing events.
Prior to joining the broadcasting field, Mayne was an honorable-mention, junior college All-American quarterback in 1987 at Wenatchee Valley Community College.
After that season, Mayne transferred to the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, where he was the backup quarterback to Randall Cunningham. He references this often.
Mayne signed as a free agent with the Seattle Seahawks and was more recently a contestant on Dancing with the Stars.
Erin Jill Andrews got her start in broadcasting from her father, who was a six-time Emmy Award-winning TV journalist.
Andrews attended the University of Florida and graduated with a degree in telecommunications. While at UF, Andrews was a member of Zeta Tau Alpha sorority and a member of the Florida Gators Dance Team from 1997 to 2000.
Andrews began her ESPN career in 2004 as a reporter for ESPN National Hockey Night. Shortly after, she moved to the sidelines as a sideline reporter for ESPN College Football Saturday Primetime and Big Ten basketball games.
Currently, Andrews hosts the first hour of ESPN's College GameDay and is a Good Morning America correspondent for ABC.
In 2008, Michael David Barrett filmed Andrews in her Nashville hotel room through peepholes. On July 16, 2009, one of these videos, in which Andrews was nude, was posted online.
Barrett is currently serving 30 months in prison for the crime and is set to be released in 2012.
Andrews is widely regarded as changing the landscape for female sideline reporters.
Stuart Scott was a member of Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity at the University of North Carolina and regularly contributed to the UNC student radio station WXYC as an on-air talent. Scott joined ESPN2 in 1993 as the host of SportsNight.
In 2002, Scott attended a New York Jets mini-camp for an ESPN special program. While there, he was hit in the eye by a football thrown from a throwing machine and permanently has a ptosis (drooping eyelid).
Scott also underwent an emergency appendectomy in Pittsburgh after becoming ill while covering the Pittsburgh Steelers versus Miami Dolphins Monday Night Football game on November 26, 2007.
Scott (due to his signature catch phrases) is arguably one of the most quoted and mimicked sportscasters to date:
Cool as the other side of the pillow.
Can I get a witness from the congregation?
You see what happened... was... I don't know.
It's your world, kid. The rest of us just payin' rent.
Hannah Storen's father was a commissioner of the American Basketball Association, general manager of the Indiana Pacers and president of the Atlanta Hawks. Storen attended the University of Notre Dame and worked for the Notre Dame-owned NBC affiliate.
After college, Storen took her on-air name, "Hannah Storm," while working as a disc jockey in Corpus Christi, Texas. She joined ESPN in 2008 and anchors SportsCenter Monday through Thursday from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.
Storen sits on the boards of the following foundations: Tribeca Film Festival, Colgate Women's Sports Awards and 21st Century Kids 1st Foundation.
In addition, Storen has written two books: one parenting guide for raising daughters in a sports-driven society, and the other reflecting upon her memories at Notre Dame.
Douglas Michael Gottlieb was a high-school All-American regarded as the "best in the west" point guard by several scouting services.
Gottlieb was the starting point guard during his freshman season for the University of Notre Dame, leading the team with 154 assists. However, Gottlieb stole credit cards from his roommate and fraudulently charged north of $900 to the stolen cards.
Jim Boeheim has publicly criticized Gottlieb for this misdemeanor fraud.
After being expelled from Notre Dame, Gottlieb transferred to Golden West College and eventually wound up playing for Eddie Sutton at Oklahoma State. His offer from Oklahoma State may or may not have had something to do with the fact that his father had been an Oklahoma State assistant coach.
Gottlieb currently holds Oklahoma State's assist record and ranks 10th all time in the NCAA with 947 career assists.
Gottlieb is a centerpiece of ESPN Radio's national program schedule.
Jemele Juanita Hill joined ESPN in 2006 as a national columnist on ESPN.com and makes regular appearances on ESPN First Take, Jim Rome is Burning and Outside the Lines.
Hill attended Michigan State University. She won the first annual McKenzie Cup, was honorable mention in the 2007 edition of the Best American Sports Writing and won first place in sports feature writing at the North Carolina Press Association.
In 2008 Hill was suspended by ESPN after referencing Adolf Hitler in an article about the Boston Celtics. Later in 2009, Hill was reprimanded for comments comparing John Calipari to Charles Manson.
Love her opinions or hate her opinions, Hill approaches journalism with fire.
In October 2009, Hill became only the second woman to ever appear on Around the Horn.
Daniel Patrick Pugh was an Ohio all-state high-school basketball player and attended Eastern Kentucky University on a full basketball scholarship.
After two seasons, Patrick transferred to the University of Dayton, where he focused on broadcast journalism. Additionally, Patrick was a member of the Phi Sigma Kappa fraternity.
From 1983 to 1989, Patrick was a sports reporter for CNN and reported on the World Series, NBA Finals and Winter Olympics.
Patrick joined ESPN in 1996 as an anchor on SportsCenter and transitioned into hosting The Dan Patrick Show on ESPN Radio in 2007.
Patrick has since left ESPN and works for Sports Illustrated. He has appeared in the following movies and television: BASEketball, The Waterboy, Clerks, and Arli$$.
Linda Cohn made her high school boy's ice hockey team and was the goalie for the women's ice hockey team at SUNY Oswego in college.
In 1987, Cohn made sportscasting history by becoming the first full-time U.S. female sports anchor on a national radio network (ABC).
Cohn joined ESPN in 1992, when she was hired for a co-anchor for SportsCenter. Cohn authored her own memoir, A No-Holds-Barred Account of Breaking into the Boys' Club.
Cohn is widely regarded as the first female sports reporter.
Stephen Anthony Smith played college basketball under Hall of Fame coach Clarence Gaines at Winston-Salem State University.
Smith joined ESPN shortly before 2005 as an analyst and talk show host of Quite Frankly with Stephen A. Smith. Smith continued to appear on other ESPN shows after his talk show was cancelled in 2007.
Smith's passion for sports and honesty with issues has led him to be a frequent guest host on Pardon the Interruption, Jim Rome is Burning and 1st and 10.
Smith was a special commentator during the Michael Jackson memorial funeral service and has become a regular guest on MSNBC's Morning Joe.
Smith appeared on a 2007 episode of the soap opera General Hospital and made a cameo in Chris Rock's I Think I Love My Wife.
Jackie MacMullan played Division I college basketball for the University of New Hampshire. She was a columnist for and associate editor of the Boston Globe until 2008.
MacMullan has collaborated with Larry Bird to publish several books touching on the Boston Celtics, Bird's autobiographies and Bird's relationship with Magic Johnson. She has also helped Shaquille O'Neal and Andre Agassii write autobiographies.
MacMullan gained further mainstream media popularity when she became a permanent fixture on the ESPN television show Around the Horn.
In May 2010, MacMullan received the Curt Gowdy Media Award, which signifies members of the print and electronic media who made a significant contribution to the game of basketball. MacMullan was the first woman to receive the honor.