THIS IS EPISODE 563 OF THE SPORTS SPECTRUM PODCAST
Niki Noto Palmer is an Atlanta-based TV personality. She is currently working as an anchor and reporter on Atlanta’s CW covering sports. She’s been affiliated with ESPN, SEC Network, HLN, Fox Sports South, CBS Sports Network and many other media outlets.
Prior to her work in television, she worked with the Atlanta Falcons and the Tennessee Titans. Niki also has experience appearing as talent for commercials and promotional videos, and has covered large events like the NCAA Final Four, the NCAA Frozen Four and numerous Atlanta Falcons home games.
She is also the host of the “Sidelines and Storylines” podcast, where she cultivates conversations with people in the sports world on the sidelines and storylines of life.
On today’s show, we talk to Niki about her desire to serve in teen ministry, her journey of reporting on sports, meeting her future husband, answered prayers in her career, and how she lives her faith out every day.
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So this isn’t a picture of opening day. BUT, stay with me. I was the Falcons team reporter in 2010 and then the lockout happened, so I was out of a job. Fast forward to winter/spring and I was on the job hunt. I auditioned and was offered the Braves hosting gig, which seemed like the DREAM job. However, at the same time I was given some pretty cool assignments… and it was on the Brave’s home opener weekend. Auburn (Gene Chizik + Cam Newton) was coming off of their National Championship and Comcast Sports Southeast (RIP CSS) was THE place to catch spring games on television and ultimately the first simulated real play since fall. I mean if you know anything about SEC football, spring games pack the stadium. I turned down the @braves gig, because I knew pursuing football was ultimately where I wanted to be in the long run. I also reached out to mentors who kept saying, “be patient… good things are coming…” I covered Mississippi State’s spring game that year and there was a redshirted true freshman named “Dak Prescott” who Mullen thought had potential. Fun fact: I was originally slated to cover Clemson’s spring game and there was this guy who graduated (+ playing for the Falcons) and my job was to interview a lot of alumni down on the sideline. I reached out to him to see if he was available for a sideline interview. And then I never followed up, letting him know my new assignment is at State. Whoops. Don’t feel sorry for him. I gave him his children. Fast forward: I used my tape from Auburn, Mississippi State and sent it to ESPN. And in the fall I began hosting “Road Trip”, which really became my dream job. Moral of the story: patience, discernment and thinking long term for the “right” thing instead of the “right now” thing always works out the way it’s supposed to. If I would have taken the Braves gig, baseball season would have crossed over with TWO SEC assignments (there was no guarantee for more, of course) and the trajectory of my career would have been dramatically different… SO, put ya big girl panties on, keep ya chin up, and get after what you want!