On Friday, Beth Mowins made history.
Assigned to call the 76ers-Hawks game at State Farm Arena, the veteran play-by-play announcer became the first woman to call an NBA regular-season game on ESPN.
Beth Mowins called the Hawks-Sixers game tonight, becoming the first woman to call a regular season NBA game in @espn. 💯
📸 Getty Images pic.twitter.com/vCwrnKa8kN
– Sports news (@sportingnews) December 4, 2023
He hosted the game along with ESPN analyst and former NBA head coach Jeff Van Gundy and Cassidy Hubbarth, who had band reporting duties.
The Hawks honored Mowins before the game for his achievement with a custom team jersey.
Coach Nate McMillan presents Beth Mowins with a # 1 jersey before becoming the first woman to call an NBA regular season game on ESPN!@ATLHawks host the @sixers at 7:30 pm / et on ESPN! pic.twitter.com/WoEBl35vif
– NBA (@NBA) December 3, 2023
In ESPN’s history of broadcasting games, Hall of Famer Doris Burke became the network’s first full-time analyst in the NBA during the 2017-18 season.
Who is Beth Mowins?
Mowins is a play-by-play announcer and sports reporter for ESPN, CBS, and the Marquee Sports Network.
In 1989, Mowins graduated from Lafayette College in Easton, Pennsylvania with a bachelor’s degree and followed up with a master’s degree from Syracuse University.
congratulations to @bethmowins – making history tonight as the first play-by-play female voice on ESPN #NBA play.
A former point guard, Beth captained the @LafayetteWBB team, he was 3X in all conferences, a 1,000-point scorer, and continues to be the school’s all-time career leader in assists. pic.twitter.com/2qYJIU0jaL
– bill hofheimer (@bhofheimer_espn) December 4, 2023
Mowins began her career in 1991 for WXHC-FM Radio in Homer, New York as a news and sports director. He joined ESPN in 1994 to cover various college sports, including basketball, football, soccer, and volleyball, while leading the network’s softball coverage.
In 2011, she was paired with Cat Whitehill on ESPN’s tertiary broadcast team for the FIFA Women’s World Cup. This was the first of many pioneering television broadcasts that he was to be a part of.
A few years later, in 2015, Mowins became the voice of the Oakland (later Las Vegas) Raiders during their preseason games. In 2017, she became the first female play-by-play announcer to call in a nationally televised regular season NFL game on ESPN when she was chosen for the opening week broadcast of ESPN’s Monday Night Football between the Los Angeles Chargers and Denver Broncos.
That assignment made her the second female play-by-play announcer in NFL regular season history behind Gayle Sierens, who was the NBC Sports play-by-play announcer for an NFL regular season game in 1987. She also became the first … ever play-by-play female broadcaster in CBS Sports’ 58-year history when she called in a regular-season game between the Cleveland Browns and the Indianapolis Colts in 2017.
Earlier this year, she held the role of play-by-play announcer for Chicago Cubs games on Marquee Sports, becoming the first woman to call in one of the team’s regular season games.