Bentley grew up in Texas as a fan of the Houston Rockets. He watched the games closely, but he also watched Lisa Malosky, one of the few sportscasters at the time.
“I remember being at the game, turning to my dad and saying that’s what I wanted to do,” Bentley said. “I also wrote in my high school yearbook that I would be doing that job within 10 years of graduating.”
And so he did. But the journey came with highs and lows.
Bentley landed a job with the Houston Texans right after graduation, later becoming the first female sportscaster and sideline reporter in the town of Beaumont, just outside of Houston. He covered two Super Bowls, a Pro Bowl and more. But he was also told his first week with the Texans that he couldn’t ride with the players to games because he would be in their way. And the day she returned to work at a Houston television station after having her first child — returning earlier than planned because they wanted her back for the Super Bowl — her boss told her she was surprised she hadn’t lost all of her children. weight.
“I had this dream, and I wanted to follow this dream, but I didn’t know what I was getting into,” he said. “On that very first day of work, I walked out of my boss’s office and decided one day I would write a book about this, and that meeting would be my opening scene.”
Eventually Bentley was allowed to travel with the players, and was no trouble. Was he always thought of as a cheerleader by fans and staff? Indeed. But he was at home with the Texans, and they respected him as part of their team.
“During my career, these stories would come up, and I would write them down and put them away,” he said. “I put the book idea in the back of my mind – I wanted to tell women they weren’t alone. I wanted to advise women to find a mentor early, which helped me set boundaries and say no. I wish I had found mentors earlier. This industry is tough, competitive and can get messy, but we are strong in helping each other.”