How to NOT show credibility on your sportscasting resume

Many years ago, I played a pickup basketball game with Danny Ainge. However, sharing a court with Ainge didn’t mean that I was an NBA-caliber player. As the following 60 minutes proved, it meant only that I was a crummy player who happened to play a pickup game with Danny Ainge.


Similarly, a common mistake that many sportscasters make on their resumes is inferring credibility based upon their experiences. Just because you interviewed Michael Jordan doesn’t mean you are a great interviewer. I have heard Jordan interviewed by a number of crummy sportscasters.

It isn’t automatically assumed that you are a great sports reporter simply because you covered the Super Bowl. Again, a lot of mediocre reporters cover the big game each year.

Sports broadcasting credibility does not result from the athletes you interview or the events that you cover.

Credibility comes from ability.

Omit experiences that don’t sell your ability

Here are some real life examples of things that I recently saw on a resume. I have changed the names and dates to preserve anonymity:

  • Participated in a press conference with Kevin Durant
  • Broadcasted the 2014 Women’s Big Ten Championship
  • Covered two Lakers games, Women’s Pac 12 Media Day 2013 and 2014
  • Covered the announcement of the College Football Hall of Fame Class of 2014

Those experiences didn’t make this sportscaster great by osmosis. Even after those events, this individual was still raw and inexperienced. His resume would be stronger by deleting those bullet points.

Removing those bullet points places greater emphasis on his practical experiences that are truly valuable to employers.

Cut your resume fluff

While I’m on the topic of resumes, you don’t need to include assumed responsibilities of your position.

A quarterback doesn’t need to put on his resume that he throws passes and a radio board op doesn’t need to state that he “turns on mic and makes sure that audio levels were properly maintained.” That kind of fluff and padding is simply a space waster.

I was hosting WeekendAllNight on ESPN Radio at the time I played that pickup game with Ainge. After we finished, I asked him to record a scouting report about me that I could use on the air. In short, he said, “Decent rebounder but otherwise has no game.”

Needless to say, I omitted the Ainge experience from my basketball resume.


  1. Robert Layton

    Thanks for the chat on Wednesday and i have a lot of work to do.

    • Jon Chelesnik

      Hi Rob — shoot, thank you for participating in yesterday’s Twitter chat. You asked some great questions and I was glad to try to answer them for you.


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