By Anriel Howard
Sports has always been a part of my everyday life. I grew up in a family of good athletes, making sports part of who I am, what has made me into the person I am today. Whenever the day comes that I won’t be able to play anymore, I still want to be involved in athletics, commentating and reporting to television audiences.
Since I was little, I knew that television was something I wanted to do. Following the advice of my mom, I started my own segment on Westlake High School’s TV broadcast called “Howard’s Not A Coward.” I would challenge the top athletes from the different teams in drills from their sport. Throughout my sophomore, junior and senior years, we had a lot of fun making these segments, and I learned many different skills from different sports. After these drills ended (I would always win), my challenge would have to admit that “Howard is not a coward.” As much fun as the segments were, I knew that at the same time, I was gaining valuable experience in television.
I was also part of the yearbook committee in high school. I started on the committee my sophomore year, and by the time I was a senior, I had the honor of being one of the yearbook editors. I was always involved which the sports sections, as I enjoyed taking pictures and writing articles of the different games, meets, and matches and even gaining knowledge about the different sports that I did not know much about.
I was blown away on my official visit to Texas A&M. The Aggie basketball and track programs are phenomenal, and are really programs that I wanted to represent. Beyond that, I wanted to gain experience to be successful in my career. When Coach Blair and his staff showed me a video of Kelsey Bone hosting a show, I knew I was going to be an Aggie.
As soon as I got on campus, my coaches found a way for me to get involved in 12th Man Productions. Their new studio blew me away on my visit, and it is absolutely beautiful. The people of 12th Man Productions are even better. I am blessed to have all of the help and connections from many different people on campus.
Aggies are everywhere in this world, even in the career path I want to take. Pat Lowry, who is the SEC Network coordinating producer for women’s basketball, among many other roles at ESPN, is an Aggie. She has invited me to several events, including an SEC Network announcer boot-camp on campus, and taking us behind the scenes at SEC Nation prior to the football team’s game against UCLA. At SEC Nation, I met Maria Taylor, who gave me wonderful advice, and has accomplished many things I want to do in this industry. This week, I will be going to the Texas A&M vs. Texas volleyball game in Austin, as Pat will show me how production for another sport is ran.
These experiences have been life-changing for me. I have been taught excellent things that I will definitely use in the future and have already experienced the value of the Aggie Network. I am excited to see what the future holds in store for me.