Jews & Sports

from Big Mo's Sports Desk

"Speedy Beatie"


Orthodox Jewish Mother of 5 wins Miami Marathon!


As NFL (the professional American-Football league) beat writers go, Jori Epstein is clearly unique: Start with being a woman, she doesn't work on Shabbat and she has penned a Holocaust survivor's biography. The Dallas resident, who attended Jewish day schools and camps, is only 26, too.

Epstein covers the Dallas Cowboys for USA Today. Her debut book, "The Upstander: How Surviving the Holocaust Sparked Max Glauben's Mission to Dismantle Hate" (Post Hill Press) - about a 93 year old fellow congregant at her Dallas synagogue - was published earlier this year.

She launched her sports journalism career with an internship at Sports Illustrated in New York while a student at the University of Texas. Epstein landed on the NFL beat when an editor at the Dallas Morning News, where she worked as a digital sports producer, understood her religious needs and gave her Saturdays off.

Jori Epstein with Holocaust survivor Max Glauben


New sports writers often cover high school or college football, which would require work on the Sabbath as games typically take place on Friday night or Saturday. The NFL was a more practical option for her, since the games are mostly on Sundays. Epstein acknowledges that she needed to bone up on football rules and proved to be a quick study.

Covering the Cowboys hasn't been a problem for her as a female reporter. "I'm so blessed to work with management, coaches and players who respect me as a woman," she said. "There will always be challenges for women in a male-dominated industry. I don't think that is unique to sports.

Epstein said the Cowboys owner, Jerry Jones, "is great. He looks you in the eye and is very sincere.

The players have shown interest in her being Jewish and in the book she authored. Wide receiver Amari Cooper asked her about Hebrew, she recalled.

The whole team is very respectful." she happily relates.

This is the 1st third of an article by Alan Zeitlin for JTA that appeared on Arutz 7 on July 05, 2021 (; the rest is about the book and her relationship with Mr. Glauben.

Photo credit: Courtesy of Jori Epstein

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