The news site of Glenbrook South High School.

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The news site of Glenbrook South High School.

The Oracle

The news site of Glenbrook South High School.

The Oracle

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South alum makes it to the big leagues
Photo courtesy of Courtney Cronin

From WGBK Radio to ESPN, Courtney Cronin, Chicago Bears National Football League (NFL) Nation Reporter, is living out her high school dream of covering professional sports in her home city of Chicago.

Cronin began her broadcasting career at South’s radio station, WGBK 88.5 FM, as a freshman, covering South sports ranging from football to baseball. Cronin said that the experiences she had at a young age helped her career take off.

“I feel so grateful every day that I went to Glenbrook South High School,” Cronin said. “I had the opportunity to do what so few people get to do in high school and that’s call play-by-play football and basketball games, host an afternoon radio show, and get to be [a] part of something that gave me my start in earnest.”

After graduating South, Cronin took her talents to Indiana University where she got to take a deeper dive into journalism. At Indiana, Cronin was a part of Big Ten Student U, worked with Indiana/247 Sports, the university student television station, and helped launch IUSportCom, a website that covered sports through writing, podcasting, and video.

“I went to Indiana because I thought I was going to do radio, but I sought more opportunities for TV,” Cronin said. “Understanding [and learning] the basics in high school helped guide me [in college].”

Cronin’s first journalism job after graduating from Indiana was at the Clarion-Ledger, a newspaper located in Jackson, Mississippi, where she worked covering high school, college, and then eventually professional sports including the National Basketball Association (NBA). When Cronin arrived at the Clarion-Ledger, she had to adjust to a different way of reporting as she was tasked with video production, Cronin said.

“At first, I was a video person, building sports videos by shooting my own content,” Cronin said. “[It] took time [and] nobody is going to be great at it at first. The more I did, the more sports I got to cover.”

After three years in Mississippi, Cronin moved to Minneapolis to become the Minnesota Vikings ESPN NFL Nation Reporter. While there, she covered everything from the “Minneapolis Miracle,” which sent the Vikings to the National
Football Conference (NFC) Championship, to covering the breakout rookie year of wide receiver Justin Jefferson.

In 2022, Cronin came back home to become ESPN’s NFL Nation Reporter for the Chicago Bears. In Chicago, Cronin
will soon cover one of the biggest moves in Bears franchise history: the anticipated drafting of Caleb Williams, University of Southern California quarterback and 2023 Heisman Trophy Winner. While this move is exciting for many Bears fans, Cronin is looking forward to covering this significant moment first-hand.

“It’s really cool to see how passionate the fans are even when they aren’t as competitive,” Cronin said. “If they get the quarterback right, this will be monumental [for this franchise]. [This is] exciting as a journalist to cover.”

While Cronin’s career began as a passion that started in high school, it has now blossomed into something bigger and includes covering the Chicago Bears and also making appearances on ESPN’s “First Take” and “Around the Horn.” As Cronin has made it big, she will always remember her roots that sparked her passion for sports journalism.

“I don’t know if I would be in this career if it wasn’t for WGBK,” Cronin said.

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