Sarah Spain

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Sarah Spain
Sarah Spain ESPN.jpg
Sarah Spain (2020)
Born
Sarah Colby Spain

(1980-08-18) August 18, 1980 (age 42)
NationalityAmerican
EducationCornell University
OccupationSports Reporter
Years active2009–present
EmployerESPN
Height6 ft 0 in (183 cm)
Spouse
Brad Zibung
(m. 2016)

Sarah Colby Spain (born August 18, 1980)[1][2] is an American sports reporter. She works as an espnW.com columnist, ESPN Radio host, ESPN television personality and occasional SportsCenter reporter for ESPN.

Early life and education[edit]

Spain was born in Cleveland, Ohio, and raised in Lake Forest, Illinois.

In 1998, as a senior at Lake Forest High School, Spain was the MVP and captain of her track and field, field hockey and basketball teams.[3][4][5] Spain attended Cornell University, where she majored in English. She was a heptathlete on the Cornell Big Red track and field team, for which she was co-captain her senior year.[6]

Super Bowl XLI[edit]

Spain gained notoriety in 2007 when she made a post on eBay offering to be someone's "date" to Super Bowl XLI, in which the Chicago Bears played the Indianapolis Colts. She was living in Los Angeles at the time and, expecting to go to the game with friends, had purchased a plane ticket to Miami. However, her friends decided they couldn't afford to go, leaving Spain solo and without a game ticket. She described the auction as a stunt to get media attention, with the hope that a company would try to gain publicity by sponsoring her attendance at the Super Bowl. Word of the auction reached Unilever, the makers of Axe Body Spray, who covered Spain's costs to attend the game and in turn began a media campaign to "see how many guys would do the same thing for a chance to see their team play."[7]

Spain states that criticisms of the Super Bowl stunt misinterpret both her actions and motives.[8]

Career[edit]

Before joining ESPN, Spain worked for Fox Sports Net, MouthpieceSports.com, ChicagoNow.com and was the recurring guest-host of WGN's radio show called ChicagoNow Radio.[6] Spain also worked as a sideline reporter for the Big Ten Network and hosted the Coors Light Fantasy Players Minute. She was one of the original co-hosts of the WGN-TV show Chicago's Best, with Ted Brunson and Brittney Payton.[6] She joined ESPN 1000 in Chicago in 2010 and signed on as a writer for espnW.com in October of the same year.

On January 23, 2015, ESPN announced that it was launching a new radio show called Spain & Prim with Spain and anchor Prim Siripipat as the co-hosts.[9] In January 2016, Spain, Jane McManus and Kate Fagan launched a new national ESPN Radio show, The Trifecta, and Spain launched her own ESPN podcast, That's What She Said. Spain has appeared on a variety of ESPN television shows, including: His & Hers (formerly Numbers Never Lie), Olbermann, Mike & Mike, The Dan Le Batard Show with Stugotz, First Take, The Sports Reporters, "Highly Questionable" and Outside The Lines. On February 25, 2016, Spain made her first appearance on ESPN's Around the Horn. In September 2016, Spain inked a new multi-year deal with ESPN and launched a national ESPN Radio show, Izzy & Spain, with co-host Israel Gutierrez.[10] In 2017, she hosted Fantasy Football Island with Mike Golic Jr.[11]

In 2018, Spain and co-host Jason Fitz (a former member of The Band Perry)[12] launched the national radio show Spain & Fitz. In 2019, Fitz moved to mornings, and the show (with rotating co-hosts) was renamed Spain & Company.[13] In August 2020, Fitz returned as co-host of the evening broadcast, again known as Spain & Fitz.[12]

On March 1, 2021, the Chicago Red Stars of the National Women's Soccer League announced that Spain had joined the women's soccer team's ownership group.[14][15][16]

#MoreThanMean[edit]

In 2016, Spain, along with Chicago sports radio host Julie DiCaro, appeared in a video entitled "More Than Mean," in which unsuspecting, ordinary men read real, degrading tweets directed to Spain and DiCaro to them while sitting face-to-face.[17] The video was meant to highlight the sexual harassment, unjust criticism, rape threats, and death threats that female sportscasters face online simply for doing their jobs.[18] The four-minute video, produced by Just Not Sports and One Tree Forest Films, won a 2016 Peabody Award in the Public Service category.[19]

Accolades[edit]

  • Crain's Chicago 40 Under 40 (2017)
  • Peabody Award (2017)
  • Gracie Award (2016, 2017)
  • Sports Clio Grand Award (2016)
  • Deadline Club Award (2018)
  • Sports Emmy Awards (2018, 2018)

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Sarah Spain".
  2. ^ "Reporter Sarah Spain Is a Chicago Sports fan". chicagomag.com.
  3. ^ "Title IX 40 for 40: Sarah Spain". ivyleaguesports.com.
  4. ^ "His & Hers: Finding Your Voice: 12/17/15". ESPN.Go.com. Retrieved December 17, 2015.
  5. ^ "Glory Days with Lake Forest High School Athlete Sarah Spain". patch.com.
  6. ^ a b c "Sarah Spain's Website". sarahspain.com. Retrieved December 18, 2015.
  7. ^ "Sarah Spain - Jeff Pearlman". www.jeffpearlman.com.
  8. ^ "Sarah Spain » I'm Mad As Hell & I'm Not Going To Take This Anymore". sarahspain.com.
  9. ^ "Two women are bringing down the last old boys club with the help of ESPN". USA Today. Retrieved January 23, 2015.
  10. ^ "ESPN Signs espnW Writer and ESPN Radio Host Sarah Spain to Multiyear Extension - ESPN MediaZone". espnmediazone.com.
  11. ^ Rosenthal, Phil. "ESPN pushes expanded fantasy football coverage with 28-hour marathon".
  12. ^ a b "Jason Fitz". ESPN Press Room U.S. Retrieved April 11, 2022.
  13. ^ "Jason Fitz Moves To ESPN Radio Mornings With 'Golic & Wingo,' Sarah Spain Continues In Evening Slot". All Access. Retrieved October 10, 2019.
  14. ^ "Chicago Red Stars Introduce Groundbreaking New Ownership Group" (Press release). Chicago Red Stars. March 1, 2021. Retrieved August 24, 2022.
  15. ^ "Why I Believe" (Press release). Chicago Red Stars. Retrieved August 24, 2022.
  16. ^ Mikula, Jeremy (March 1, 2021). "Chicago Red Stars have an expanded ownership group — including Israel Idonije and Kendall Coyne Schofield — as they look to increase revenue and drive growth with new investors". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved August 24, 2022.
  17. ^ Laird, Sam (April 26, 2016). "More than mean: Powerful video highlights harassment of women in sports media". Mashable. Retrieved February 23, 2018.
  18. ^ Gibbs, Lindsay (May 3, 2016). "'More Than Mean' Roundtable: Female Sportswriters Speak Up About Online Harassment". ThinkProgress. Retrieved February 23, 2018.
  19. ^ Blanchard, Margaret (April 25, 2017). "News, Public Service, Radio/Podcast, and Web winners round out the Peabody 30". UGA Today. Retrieved February 23, 2018.

External links[edit]