Ian Rapoport on how to become a successful sports journalist

Daniel May, Sports Editor

The NFL combine is a great time to pick the brains of some of the best upcoming prospects.

However, there is also an ample opportunity to interview other NFL-affiliated members, such as head coaches, general managers and TV personalities.

Ian Rapoport, who is argued to be the face of all NFL reporting, is no exception to the above statement.

In between segments of “NFL Network,” I was able to flag Rapoport down and ask him what it takes to become a successful sports journalist.

His answer may surprise you.

Many people see Rapoport and automatically think that he was made for the limelight.

Because he is young, they assume that he had a relatively easy path to get where he currently is. However, that is far from the truth.

Rapoport told me that he took the path less traveled.

Growing up in New York City, Rapoport didn’t have it easy. He had a tough time in school and his parents divorced when he was a young age.

Rapoport started his career in Mississippi writing for the Jackson Clarion-Ledger in 2004. He covered the Mississippi State Bulldogs.

After a brief two-year stint in Mississippi, Rapoport moved to Birmingham, where he covered the Alabama Crimson Tide in The Birmingham News.

Rapoport continued to advance his career, moving to Boston to write for the Boston Herald.

He served as a beat writer there until 2012 before joining NFL Network as a TV analyst/sports writer.

When asked what made him stand out from other journalists, Rapoport said, “My willingness to move.”

Rapoport continued in his remarks and shared that he did not fear the unknown.

He moved wherever he could find a job. This looked great in his resume, and it added incredible diversity to his field of knowledge.

So, if you’re looking to become serious in your career, journalist or not, do not fear the unknown.

Step out of your comfort zone and embrace unfamiliarity. Make it your best friend. Move to where you can find a job.

Who knows, maybe you will become the next Ian Rapoport.