Brianne Welch came to Lipscomb to play softball as an outfielder, but she knew her career in sports would eventually be something she did with a microphone in her hand rather than a bat. She has started the climb up the ladder that most TV reporters experience working for two stations in Abilene, Texas. Between high school and college football team interviews she found some time to talk with Lipscombsports.com.
What years did you play at Lipscomb? Who were your coaches?
"I played softball from fall of 2011 through the spring of 2015. My coach was Kristin Ryman."
Why did you choose to attend Lipscomb?
"I am pretty sure I was playing in a travel ball tournament in Birmingham, Alabama when Coach Ryman and Coach (Lexi) Myers first started to recruit me. They told me they really wanted me to come to Lipscomb, but at first I was hesitant. A bunch of my teammates on my travel team were going to Kennesaw State and they wanted me to play college ball with them.
"Then, when I came and saw Lipscomb I said, `man, it is in Nashville'. I liked that. Coach Ryman and Coach Myers acted like they wanted me to play for them. I wanted to play for somebody who wanted me.
"I knew I was going to get a chance at Lipscomb. I was also happy with the journalism program which is what I wanted to do."
What is your fondest athletic memory at Lipscomb?
"The one that stands out more than anything for me was at the NCAA Regional at the University of Tennessee when we beat Virginia Tech 12-3. That is by far my best memory. I had friends on the Virginia Tech team. And we were all excited as a team. I felt like I had one of my best games. The atmosphere was great. I will never forget it.
"That was my junior year and when people ask me about college that is the year I reference the most. I talk about beating Baylor. I talk about going to the regionals. It was just fun. It was the most fun I had playing ball. Individually, it was my best season and that made it more fun. That year was fantastic."
Who had the biggest influence on you during your athletic career at Lipscomb? How?
"I think it would be Coach (Megan) Smith. She had the biggest impact on me. When she got to Lipscomb it was my junior year and she did a whole lot of mental games stuff with us which is where I struggled.
"I liked it when I did something dumb she would call me out and say, `Brianne, just stop'. I don't know if she even realized she did it, but I noticed it. It helped me to stop what I was doing and just play ball. All of the mental things like visualizing really helped me. All of the things she did from the mental side of the game really helped me as a player.”
What is your fondest non-athletic memory from your time at Lipscomb?
"That is a hard one. Everything goes back to athletics because of who my friends were. My teammates were my best friends.
"The thing I liked most about Nashville was all of the free concerts around town. Ashley Anderson, Haley Elliott, Kristen Sturdivant and I went to a lot of concerts. It was fun."
What is the most valuable thing you gained or learned from your time at Lipscomb?
“Whether it was softball or life in general I really learned to be confident in myself. I am still working on it, but I try not to worry about what the world thinks or what anybody else thinks. Once you have your views and your beliefs you need to stand by them.
“I knew that before I came to Lipscomb. My Mom taught me my whole life to believe what I believe and stick with it. But going to Lipscomb enforced it. We had things like devotionals with Coach Ryman and Coach J.J. (Dillingham) when we played away games.
“It all pointed back to being confident and being yourself and even though you are living in the world you can’t let the world sway you. I became a lot more of an individual at Lipscomb.”
Who was your favorite professor? Why?
“I have two – Alan Griggs and Mark McGee.
“They were totally different professors, but they were similar in that they both believed in me. They told me I could be a sports reporter. They believed in me as an individual. They both gave me opportunities.
“Dr. McGee’s classes were fun. We talked about sports. I learned a lot from him about sports writing.
“Mr. Griggs was really hard on me. He pushed me hard. I learned a lot in his news reporting class that I use every day here at work. His classes were really hard and challenging, but they really have helped me.”
Where do you live now?
Who is your employer? What is your occupation? What does your position entail?
"I work as a sports reporter for both KTAB (CBS affiliate) and KRBC (NBC affiliate). They are two separate stations. There are three of us who cover sports and we do it for both stations.
“I started last year during high school basketball season in January. We have three colleges in the area and more than 30 high schools.
“Football is really the king here. I have been doing that since early August. We have a football show on Friday night. On the weekends I anchor shows. On weekdays I am a part-time anchor and a full-time sports reporter.
“I anchor with another person on weekends. We switch stations each weekend.
“I got to cover the Texas Rangers opener in Dallas. It was awesome.”
Tell us about your family.
“I am single.”
My email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.