Hailing from West Michigan, Michelle “Meesh” McMahon is a freelance sports broadcaster, speaker, emcee and writer located in the Chicago area.
You can find her regularly on Big Ten Network covering college sports. She also serves as a studio show host and the sideline reporter for the Chicago Blackhawks on NBC Sports Chicago.
She’s been featured on Dancing with Chicago Celebrities, and contributes to various local charity events.
Michelle played division-one volleyball at the University of Michigan, where she pursued a degree in Communications and a minor in Spanish. She contributed to the advancement of an Elite eight regional final and two Sweet-Sixteen Regional’s in the NCAA tournament.
She was a three-time Big Ten Distinguished Scholar honoree and was also honored with the Mary Lou Butcher Equality in Journalism award for adamantly pursuing a career in broadcasting as a female.
BIG TEN NETWORK
Michelle began her broadcast career with BTN and has stayed on staff as a freelance sports journalist since 2012. She covers college football, basketball, hockey, volleyball, soccer, and baseball.
FOX SPORTS SOUTH
The Carolina Hurricanes hired Michelle to serve as the sideline reporter and TV show host for every game broadcast.
She also covered the NBA with the Charlotte Hornets.
Michelle was featured on TBS for the college beach volleyball national championship.
NHL NETWORK/MLB NETWORK
Michelle succeeded on the national stage early in her career where she contributed regularly on NHL Network and MLB Network, including the Stanley Cup Final.
NBC SPORTS CHICAGO
Michelle is on the Chicago Blackhawks television broadcasts before, during, and after the game.
In high school I was told that as a 5’4” volleyball player I was “too short,” and that there was no way I could play volleyball for Michigan.
In college, I was frequently told I was not the best player in my position, and probably not good enough to see the floor on game day.
In sports broadcasting, I was often advised to seek alternative career paths and pursue other options, this industry is “too competitive” and a “man’s world” after all.
In high school, I was offered the opportunity to walk on and play volleyball at the highest level for the University of Michigan—I accepted.
In college, it wasn’t until my senior year that I got my first collegiate start—I successfully impacted my team.
In sports broadcasting, BTN offered me a small opportunity upon graduation— I jumped at the chance to pursue and expand my dreams.
So here’s my advice to anyone and everyone: naysayers are always going to underestimate you and deter you no matter how capable you may be. I’ve been in the “underdog” role many times in my life, but I couldn’t control that; the only thing I could control was my work ethic, mindset, and attitude.
Had I listened to the negativity, I would not have made it to The University of Michigan, I definitely would not have pursued collegiate volleyball, and I most certainly would not have looked into sports broadcasting as a career path. There is so much freedom in realizing that no one else has control over what you can accomplish in this world and in your life. If you are passionate enough, work hard enough, and consistently embody a positive attitude, you can accomplish anything. Don’t be afraid to dream big. Life is your journey, allow your passion to lead you to your purpose, and don’t be afraid to own it.
I leave you with the words from my life long mentor from the University of Michigan, Mr. Greg Harden:
“Fear is normal—you must face fear and be aware that fear and self-doubt are the greatest enemies you will ever face. Control the controllables, never let yourself play the victim, and most importantly always believe in yourself.”
You are worth it, I promise.
Be kind. Be humble. Believe.