Everything but the Ball is a new podcast hosted by Katie McNulty, Caleigh Burchfield, and Jenna Kase all about uplifting women in sports.
McNulty is a junior at Lehigh University majoring in journalism, Burchfield is a junior at St. Lawrence University majoring in English writing and communications, and Kase is a junior at Emerson College majoring in sports communication. The three co-hosts met this summer while interning at Major League Lacrosse in Annapolis, Maryland and immediately clicked.
McNulty approached the two with the idea for the podcast in early August. She said she had been thinking about starting a podcast about women in sports for a couple years now, but it was all about finding the right people — she thought there was no one better to embark on this project than Kase and Burchfield.
The three co-hosts were all frustrated by the lack of coverage female athletes were getting in the media — women in sports only make up four percent of all TV coverage — and wanted to break down stereotypes that exist in the industry and call attention to how women bring just as much to the table as men. They saw this podcast as the ideal way to spread this message.
“This podcast is meant to empower the voices of females in sports,” Burchfield said. “I wholeheartedly, of course, believe that women absolutely belong in sports and I don’t think that there’s enough push for that.”
The team also saw the podcast as a way to take their communications education outside the classroom, getting more interviewing and editing experience.
The team has been meeting every Thursday for the past eight weeks to plan. None of them have ever recorded a podcast, so their planning included podcast research, scripting their mission statement and questions, as well as lining up their guests.
The hosts said they are relying on their connections made through school, work and life to find their guests.
Their first episode, titled “If they don’t respect me, shame on them,” aired on Oct. 14.
The episode features Carrie Gamper, director of brand strategy, marketing, and communications at MLL, and the hosts’ boss.
Everything but the Ball’s goal is to feature a variety of voices from all different levels and areas of sports – spanning from athletes, to coaches, to wives and girlfriends, to social media managers.
“We don’t just want to talk to athletes,” McNulty said. “We also want to talk to women in sports off the field. It doesn’t matter, if they’re in sports and they’re a woman we want to talk to them.”
The group aims to cover topics such as how their guests got into their roles, the trials of being a woman in a male-dominated industry, juggling life and work, and inspirations and inclusivity in the industry.
“I want listeners to be able to understand that just because they’re going into this industry that is highly dominated by men, they don’t deserve to be treated any less just because they’re a woman,” Kase said. “It ultimately comes down to how hard you are going to work and if you are truly passionate about it. I think hopefully the goal of this podcast is really to show women and young girls that they can really do anything they set their mind to even if the statistics are piled up against you.”
Getting the podcast together has been challenging, considering the hosts are all located in different states: McNulty in Bethlehem, PA; Burchfield in Canton, NY; and Kase in Boston, MA. However, they have been making great progress over Zoom and successfully recorded their first episode this past Tuesday, Oct. 6.
The hosts recognize there is a large learning curve ahead of them, but are just excited to get their feet off the ground and create something they’re proud of, said Burchfield.
“We want to take one episode at a time and put a lot of effort into each one,” McNulty said. “We want to grow from every episode.”