ESPN's Holly Rowe returns to Big 12 coverage during cancer battle
Holly Rowe crafted a health update for her employer, ESPN, to distribute as a press release. Less than a year after having a tumor removed from her chest, a second one was found and she underwent surgery last month.
She awoke in her hospital bed, turned on the TV and saw her update crawling across the bottom of the screen.
“Oh, my gosh, I was so embarrassed,” Rowe said.
But amazed at the outpouring of support by viewers and fans of her work, which continued this week during the Big 12 Tournament at the Sprint Center. Rowe joined ESPN in 1998 and has covered college football, the NBA, WNBA and softball, but she’s known in the Big 12 footprint as the sideline reporter for Big Monday games.
Her first assignment with the conference came in 2006, the Missouri victory over Kansas that was aided by the Jayhawks’ two missed free throws in the final second.
Fans, coaches and players have wished her well throughout the tournament and the Big 12 is providing comfort.
The conference has provided a room for Rowe that includes a couch if she wanted to relax between sessions on Thursday. There are chairs on both ends of the floor to rest between live spots.
“I just feel so loved,” said Rowe, who started to tear up. “I can’t say thank you enough.”