Women’s History Month: Kim Jones, NFL Network Reporter
Added by Gina Sorce on March 2, 2013.
Everyday this month, Double G Sports will be featuring interviews from prominent women in the sports industry as our way of celebrating Women’s History Month. This project is in its 2nd year. Today we feature former YES Network reporter for the Yankees and current NFL Network reporter, Kim Jones.
Kim Jones, NFL Network Reporter
The interviews. The champagne celebrations. The World Series. The Captain. The greatest closer of all time.
Those are the first things that come to mind when Kim Jones of the NFL Network reflects on her time she spent covering the Yankees at the YES Network.
“It all comes back to relationships, and those were seven years that I never, ever imagined because I never thought of that opportunity,” Jones recalled. “I couldn’t have asked for more.”
During her time at YES, Jones witnessed milestones such as the Yankees 2009 World Series victory, Derek Jeter’s 3,000th career hit and Mariano Rivera’s 600th career save.
“It was a dream seven years when you look back at what they accomplished,” Jones said.
Prior to working at YES, Jones served as the New York Giants beat reporter and NFL columnist at the Star Ledger. After spending seven years with YES, Jones took her talent back to the fast-paced sport of football.
“Every game in football is such a big game,” she said. “It’s equivalent to a little bit more than ten baseball games. The week is built on one game, or in a sense two: looking back at the previous game and ahead to the next week.”
Jones said the most notable difference between baseball and football is the work week. Football’s week begins on Monday and lasts throughout Sunday, resetting on Monday again. Baseball however, is “a continual grind.”
“(Baseball) is like the hamster on the wheel. It never really stops until it gets off of it,” she described. “Tone, rhythm and the way we approach the game are very, very different.”
Kim Jones, as a member of the YES Network broadcast team.
Although the two sports are vastly different, Jones said the Yankee games that were most similar to the intensity of football are the big series against their American League East Rivals, the Boston Red Sox and the Tampa Bay Rays.
While Jones was at YES, viewers only saw a few minutes of her hard work and reporting on the pre-game and post-game shows. What the viewers didn’t get to see, however, were her game day responsibilities.
“You catch your breath a little bit. Pay attention to the game and try to notice trends,” she said. “Post-game questions aren’t formed from the best, in-depth thinking. The game is the game, and the post-game reflects that.”
Although she worked in a stressful, competitive environment, Jones never lost sight of who she was doing her job for: the viewer and the Yankee fan. Jones tried to give viewers a glimpse of the player and who that player really is.
“Jeter: sarcastic. Swisher: smiling and brutally honest,” she said. “Damon was a standup guy. He was incredibly honest.”
Jones is an alumni of Penn State University, where she earned a B.A. in journalism. Jones had always loved sports and writing about them. This passion landed her on the field at Penn State, covering some of the most intense televised college football games.
“I was young and was in an environment where it was very comfortable to cover Penn State in a certain way,” she said. “It was an absolutely incredible experience.”
Needless to say, Jones has found success in an industry largely dominated by men.
“I think if you’re a woman, and you make a mistake, it’s going to be ‘See, she didn’t know what she what she was talking about anyway.’ I thought we would be way passed this by now, but unfortunately, we’re not,” she said.
Jones appreciates the support she has received along the way, especially front office personnel, coaches, and players giving her the information needed to complete the story.
“If I make one factual error, all of a sudden I’m not credible. There’s just not a man in this business who deals with that,” she said. “People can be close minded, and I hear about it on Twitter. We may not get there with some people. We may never get there with some people.”
For women aspiring to enter the world of sports media, Jones offered thoughtful advice:
“If I can do it, you can do it. From every experience you can and will gain something. I encourage anyone to do it, if you’re all in. If it doesn’t work out, you followed a path and found a new dream, and I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that.”