The Sports Desk

sportsdeskTiffany Blackmon (B.A. ’07) always figured she’d have a career in sports; it was just a matter of whether it would be on the field or in front of the camera.

The former standout for the women’s soccer team was born into an athletic family. Her father, Donald, was an NFL All-Pro linebacker who played seven seasons for the New England Patriots before moving into the coaching ranks. A job coaching with the Falcons landed the family in Atlanta.

In high school, Blackmon was a two-sport star – she played basketball, too – but she says she “pretty much played soccer year-round, at school as well as club soccer.” So when it came time to pick a sport, the All-State prep player on the pitch says soccer easily won out.

At GSU, the defender was an integral part of a unit that twice tied the school record of nine regular season shutouts. As a junior, she helped the 2005 squad hold their opponents to one goal or less in 12 games and extend the Panthers’ unbeaten home streak to 19 games. She was named to the conference All-Academic Team as a sophomore.

But the journalism major also was bitten by the broadcasting bug. “I always loved writing and watching ‘Sportscenter’ and figured why not combine my love of both?” she says.

Shortly after graduation, and with a little help from communication instructor Andree Grogan, she landed a job at the Weather Channel as a camera operator.

“The first thing you notice about her is her 1,000-watt smile,” Grogan says about her former student. “She has a winning personality and is always upbeat. She is very bright and was a very hard worker.”

While Blackmon enjoyed her time at the Weather Channel (“I couldn’t believe they were letting a kid like me operate such expensive equipment!”), she had her sights on a gig in front of the camera. About a year later, she landed her first on-air job as a do-it-all reporter in Lake Charles, La.

“I had to cover news in addition to sports, and I hated doing news,” she says. “So on the weekends, I was the weekend sports anchor and two or three days out of the week I was covering news stories.”

Blackmon was soon recruited to become a full-time sports reporter in Waco, Texas. After just four months on the job, she was promoted to sports director.

One year later, Blackmon was called up to a much larger market – and this past September she became part of the sports team for Oklahoma City’s NBC affiliate, KFOR-TV. In Oklahoma City, the nation’s 45th-largest television market and home to an NBA franchise, she covers two major collegiate sports programs, the University of Oklahoma and Oklahoma State, and the NBA’s Oklahoma City Thunder.

“I’ve been kicked out of the nest everywhere I’ve been, and I’ve been forced to learn quickly,” Blackmon says. “I’m really excited to be in Oklahoma City, and I’m even more excited to see what the future holds.”