UT Alumna Reports Sports to Local Texans

Being a sports reporter was a no-brainer for Jessica Moran. This former University of Tampa soccer player knew she wanted to work in sports while at school. She lives out her love of the game everyday as a sports anchor at KDBC in El Paso, Texas.

This UT alumna first got her inspiration for sports broadcasting while studying and playing soccer at UT.

‘My whole life I played sports so I had a good idea that something sports related was what I wanted to do,’ Moran said.

‘ But it was not until she interned at WFLA, the Tampa NBC affiliate, that she knew TV was in her future.’ Her first assignment was to cover the Stanley Cup victory parade in downtown Tampa.’

‘They let me do a lot of the interviews, and they helped me build my resume tape.’
For those already in the broadcasting business, resume tapes are a must.’ Moran said she sent out 100 tapes, only to get three job offers. She accepted her first on-air job three months after she graduated in May 2005.

South Dakota

So this New England native headed to Rapid City, South Dakota, which was a rude awakening, going from Tampa’s warm winters, to the bitter cold of the north. Not only because of the cold winters up north but because she went from the Tampa, the 13th largest market, to Rapid City, the 176th market out of 200, which in the TV business, is a small station.’

Moran said that for a broadcaster’s first job, ‘You have to start as small as you can get.’ She knows first-hand what tremendous responsibility it takes because she was, as many in the business call it, a ‘one-man band.” She produced, wrote, edited, shot, anchored and reported all sports coverage five days a week.’

‘It’s sink or swim, you either rise to the challenges or you’re not going to make it,’ she said.’

Moran said the first month was very tough, ‘I didn’t think I was going to make it.’


In March 2006, Moran made her next career stop in El Paso, Texas, a 98th market station, where she currently reports and anchors.’ She said networking was how she got this job.’

Living in Texas has opened her eyes to a new culture.’

‘I’m right on the border. I could throw a rock and hit Mexico,’ she said.

So far, she has won three Texas Associated Press awards and one New Mexico Associated Press award for her work.

UT Education

Moran credits UT with giving her a valuable education.

‘My UT experience was tremendous and very helpful.”

She said UT communication professors Mark Douglas, Donovan Myrie and Gregg Bachmann helped her learn broadcast news.’

She took classes such as Studio TV I and Writing for Broadcast News to help her prepare for her job.’

Playing on the field also helped Moran with understanding sports coverage.’

‘Playing soccer taught me about scheduling and dealing with adversity,’ she said.

She also learned to love the city of Tampa while studying at UT. ‘I’d go back there in a heartbeat,’ she said.


Moran and her agent are currently looking for her next career stop.’ But she said the city size does not matter.’

‘I want to go somewhere where I am recognized for my work,’ she said.

For students looking to be a TV broadcaster, she said, ‘You have to be aggressive but not desperate.’

‘If you accept the work load, you have to attack it and go for it.’

Ellery McCardle can be reached at ellery.mccardle@gmail.com

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