Erin Andrews on Pam Oliver: ‘I have huge shoes to fill’


(Courtesy ESPN)

Erin Andrews says she was as surprised as anyone to learn that news that she would replace Pam Oliver as the sideline reporter on Fox Sports’ top NFL broadcasting team had gone public.

“I don’t think anyone really knew that announcement was coming out yesterday so it was a shock to me when I got to Minnesota [for the All-Star Game] and I woke up from my red-eye, I had no idea any of that was happening,” she told USA Today.

The controversial decision was reached a couple of weeks ago, but was reported Monday by SI.com’s Richart Deitsch and caught Andrews, who had been on vacation and spending time with her boyfriend, Jarrett Stoll of the Los Angeles Kings. Andrews has been groomed for a bigger role at Fox since coming over from ESPN two years ago and she acknowledged that Oliver, who will mark 20 years as a sideline reporter this fall, has helped her.

“I have huge shoes to fill here,” Andrews said. “I’m not ignoring that at all and in fact that’s going to challenge me and make me want to be better than I was before. She set the standard, she is a trailblazer. … She’s the first person to ask me if I’m okay and if I need anything and that’s going to make my job 15 times more difficult just because I know, I’m going to have to try to live up to that and that’s not easy at all. I can’t thank her enough for being such a wonderful example for me.”

After spending most of her career in traditional print sports journalism, Cindy began blogging and tweeting, first as NFL/Redskins editor, and, since August 2010, at The Early Lead. She also is the social media editor for Sports.
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