SPORTS BABE OF THE DAY: Kristen Ledlow, Co-Host on 92.9FM The Game
SPORTS BABE OF THE DAY: Kristen Ledlow, Co-Host of ‘The Opening Drive’ on 92.9FM The Game, @KristenLedlow
Never backing down from challenges, Ledlow has worked hard throughout her life to go after what she’s really wanted, which is to be a sports broadcaster.
After having an internship with ESPN in Los Angeles, she knew she’d found her place in the world.
Now, Ledlow is a co-host on The Opening Drive for Atlanta’s 92.9 The Game.
Intelligence, humor and beauty are all there, and there’s not one un-babe-like quality about her — as long as you don’t tap her on the shoulder…
19 QUESTIONS WITH KRISTEN LEDLOW
1. How did you get into sports broadcasting?
As an 8-year-old girl, I started playing sports all year, every year. When I was in middle school, Michael Jordan retired from the game of basketball for the final time. I remember watching a woman hold up a microphone and thinking, ‘Her job is to talk to Michael Jordan?’ Since then, I’ve never wanted to do anything else. I majored in Broadcast and Communication while playing volleyball at Southeastern University, and interned in Orlando and Los Angeles before landing my first full-time job in Tallahassee.
2. We know you’re a former beauty queen, how have your experiences in pageants helped you in your career?
Funny enough, my initial participation in the Miss USA organization stemmed from a girl crush I developed on former Miss Florida USA, Megan Clementi. As a senior in college, I watched and admired Megan on the Orlando Magic sidelines. My mother (a former Miss Congeniality in the Miss Georgia pageant, nonetheless) convinced me to compete in Tallahassee’s local pageant as a means to gaining confidence and experience in the world of television. No one was more shocked than I was when I went home with a crown! Finding a friend in Megan Clementi at Miss Florida USA the following summer was a highlight for me, as the pageant world turned out to be so much more than I expected. Miss Florida USA helped me to understand my value as a role model to young girls and offered me a platform to set an example.
3. What’s your proudest achievement to date?
While I’m very proud of my time with the Miss USA organization, covering the BCS National Championship and interviewing some of my idols in the sports industry, I recognize that none of these “achievements” would have been possible without God’s hand in opening those doors for me. My proudest achievement at the end of my career will have been to blaze a trail for young women with integrity to move closer to their dreams.
I was raised in Tallahassee during Coach Bobby Bowden’s golden era with the Seminoles. Now the winningest college football coach of all time, Bowden became synonymous with the game in my mind. In December of 2011, I was granted the opportunity to spend the evening with the legendary coach, along with my father. Not only was it a football girl’s dream, but also it became my best interview and story to date.
5. Has anything funny ever happened during an interview? If so, what was it?
While covering college football’s preseason at the University of Florida, Gator linebacker Lerentee McCray took my microphone and started interviewing me! He asked me about the atmosphere on the sidelines and my expectations for UF’s 2012 season. Through the laughter, I had to remind him to hold up the microphone and to add his “signature sign-off” at the end!
6. Do you listen to your radio shows or is it strange for you?
We’re our own worst critics, aren’t we? I have always found it difficult to watch myself on television or listen to myself on the radio. However, it’s become my greatest tool in becoming a better sportscaster! By listening to myself objectively and asking for the advice of my mentors in the business, I continue to improve. I never want to settle for less than my best!
7. Do you have any rituals you do before you go on the air?
I spend more time studying for my job now than I ever spent studying in college. I watch sports news, read all the major columns and headlines and walk into work with a stack of highlighted statistics! As a woman, there is little margin for error when broadcasting to a male-dominated audience. Oh, and caffeine…lots of it!
8. What is the favorite part of your job?
Quite simply, it blows my mind every single day that I am getting paid money to cover sports. On days (and nights) when I feel exhausted, I am reminded how blessed I am to do what I love for a living.
9. What are your favorite sports and why?
First and foremost, I love basketball. I played the game through my freshman year at Southeastern University, when I made the transition to volleyball for the rest of my college career. I am also a die-hard NBA fan! Secondly, football is my favorite. Can anyone think of a better atmosphere than under the Saturday-night lights of college football? I’ll never get over that feeling in the fall.
Without a question, the interview atop my bucket list is Bill Russell. As a center for the Boston Celtics, he was named the NBA’s Most Valuable Player five times, an NBA All-Star 12 times and won 11 NBA titles in his 13-year career. Russell represents the history of the game I fell in love with as a little girl.
11. Who did you draw inspiration from while growing up?
My faith has served as the foundation for my life, along with my family. My father inspired my love of sports and my standard of excellence. My mother inspired my drive to succeed and conquer the world. My sister inspired my sense of humor and philosophy of not taking myself too seriously.
12. If you were a superhero, which one would you be and why?
Spiderman. Sense no sarcasm when I say that – I have a full Spidey suit in my closet, and it’s been used on more than one occasion…not named Halloween.
13. What are some of your pet peeves?
I’m pretty easygoing, but I cannot handle when someone taps me on the shoulder (or the back, or the arm, or the leg…or anything). I don’t know why, but it drives me toward insanity.
I have the sweetest of all sweet teeth! Candy, candy, candy. Skittles are my favorite. I also consider my beloved pop music a guilty pleasure – Justin Timberlake (and Bieber!), Britney Spears, Beyonce and even One Direction. Oh, and I still rock to Hanson!
15. If you could go back in time to any sporting event, which one would you attend?
I would do anything to have been in attendance for Game 5 of the NBA Finals in 1997. Michael Jordan, battling the flu, got out of bed at 5:50 p.m. for a 7 p.m. tipoff. Jordan played 44 minutes, finishing the game with 38 points, seven rebounds, five assists, three steals and one block. Are you kidding?
16. What song would you sing at karaoke?
For the record, I am the karaoke queen. My go-to is “I love Rock ‘n Roll,” a la Britney Spears in Crossroads. I also rock Taylor Swift…anything and everything Taylor Swift.
17. Do you have any hidden talents most people don’t know about?
I can dance. I’ll leave it at that!
18. What is your idea for a perfect date?
“That’s a tough one. I’d have to say April 25th, because it’s not too hot, not too cold, all you need is a light jacket!” -Miss Congeniality
19. Who would you recommend to be our next Sports Babe of the Day?
Two of my closest girlfriends in the business are Sara Jane Harris of ABC Columbia (@SaraJaneHarris) and Lindsey Thiry of FOX Sports NEXT (@LindseyThiry) in Los Angeles. Either (or both!) would be fantastic.
Interview by Miranda Murphy, @Mjmurphy522
Photo Credit: Kristen Ledlow
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