Kofie Yeboah ’13 Remakes Sports Broadcasting for the Internet Age

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Kofie Yeboah ’13 Remakes Sports Broadcasting for the Internet Age
Julie Dengler

An esports engagement manager for SB Nation and co-host of The Fumble Dimension, he’s “the right guy at the right time” — forging a career in a field that didn’t even exist 10 years ago.

Imagine a field of dreams where you can access nearly every kind of sporting event at any time. You can watch games featuring your favorite team or player online whenever you feel like it. Log on, and you are greeted by a professional esports broadcast team: real people sitting at news desks who not only commentate the virtual sports action but may even manipulate game scenarios and player statistics and respond to viewer input. The experience is akin to hanging out in a friend’s living room, enjoying snacks while debating sports trivia and cheering at the action on the screen.

Kofie Yeboah ’13 is that kind of commentator, living the dream in real time as an accomplished esports engagement manager and editor for Vox Media’s SB Nation and co-host of the popular series The Fumble Dimension. In blazing a path to a successful career — in a field that didn’t even exist when he started working toward it as a Ravenscroft sophomore — he is, as his broadcasting mentor Dave Nathan said, “the right guy at the right time for where we are in sports broadcasting.”

Working alongside sports broadcaster Dave Nathan in the Ravens’ football news booth helped Yeboah, shown here revisiting the booth in 2013, develop his skills and define his goals.


“A curious mind”

When Yeboah joined the Ravenscroft community as a freshman, he knew he wanted to become a play-by-play sports broadcaster someday.

His parents “did whatever they could to support me and give me opportunities to interact in the sports journalism field,” he said. His preparation included attending the Wharton Sports Business Academy at the University of Pennsylvania and the Triangle Sportscaster Camp at N.C. State.

Yeboah was a state champion in track and field at Ravenscroft but turned down athletic offers at other colleges to focus on sports journalism at the University of Maryland.

His parents, Yeboah said, “did whatever they could to give me opportunities to interact in the sports journalism field”; here, Kofie is pictured with his mother in December 2021.


But the most significant learning experiences took place at Ravenscroft. Yeboah credits Penny Abrahams ’93, then Ravenscroft’s Director of Communications, for connecting him with Nathan to work in the Ravens’ football news booth. By his senior year, Yeboah was announcing the games as a spotter (an expert assistant to the commentator) and had his own half-time segment.

The experience was “very valuable stuff” for an aspiring sports journalist, Yeboah said. “There wasn’t a class for it, but Ravenscroft created a project to support me.”

“Kofie was my first helper, and we were figuring it out as we went along. He was always so exuberant about what he could do that you had to rein him in sometimes,” Nathan remembered today. “Over the [three years], his persona changed, his voice changed, his work ethic developed.”

“I think Dave saw someone that was willing to go above and beyond to find what he wanted to do in life,” Yeboah said. “I had a curious mind.”

“Creators see the opening”

That curiosity has driven him since — with many accomplishments stemming from his determination to get to his goals faster.

In 2013, following an athletic career at Ravenscroft that included a state championship in the 100-meter dash, Yeboah landed at the University of Maryland as a College Park Scholar, which made him part of a vibrant living-learning community of academically talented students.

“The University of Maryland has one of the best sports journalism programs in the country — although not necessarily on paper,” he noted. “Freshman and sophomores are encouraged to get involved early, with a safety net to fail and either improve or figure out what is going to work for them as individuals.”

In this January 2022 photo from his Instagram feed, Yeboah shares with his followers that he’s going to the Super Bowl and rooting for Cincinnati.


That freedom to both fail and regroup helped him realize, in the middle of calling a double-header baseball game for the university, that traditional sports broadcasting wasn’t for him. “I was exhausted after the first game,” he explained. “I realized that I didn’t want to take that path.”

He has since realized, he said, “the thing that I was meant to do wasn’t invented yet.”

When the newspaper told him and two classmates that they’d have to wait their turn to contribute to the official University of Maryland sports publication, they started their own blog, The Left Bench. By Yeboah’s junior year, the blog had 30 contributors and access to whatever media equipment they needed — and had also won a 2014 Mobbie Award for Best College Sports Blog.

“Creators see the opening,” he said of his decision to try something different.

The Left Bench thrived, creating a solid portfolio for each contributor and connecting Yeboah to paid writing opportunities with USA Today College and ESPN’s The Undefeated before he’d even graduated. The Left Bench carries on today under student leadership. For Yeboah, the opportunities haven’t stopped.

“Making quality content”

His work at SB Nation — the largest independent sports media brand in the world — is focused on engaging a wide and loyal audience with quality content that is part sports history and game-play and part oddities and humor.

He has made a name for himself on SB Nation’s Secret Base, which Vox launched in 2020 as “a new community dedicated to the internet’s most entertaining and creative stories for sports fans — and anyone who loves great storytelling and community.” Kofie’s personality shines through in his interactions with his Secret Base colleagues: they quickly make room for him on the interview couch and “lol” heartily when he weighs in on the conversation.

Yeboah and co-host Jon Bois record the Fumble Dimension episode on golf, which was released in February 2020.


In a world of nonstop virtual sports on multiple platforms that could come down to “likes” and follows, his professional brand is indisputably shaped by his personal style.

“In 2013, we were told to have a professional Twitter account and a personal one. Today, my job includes my persona. I don’t have to be a carbon copy of someone else,” he said, adding, “Not everything is going to go viral. You have to come to trust that variety of good, quality work over analytics. Making quality content is what I focus on.”

Over the last two years, working from his New York apartment has allowed Yeboah to consider that he can do his job from anywhere while pursuing other interests. He recently signed with a talent agent and has done some sketch and comedy work. While he plans to move to Los Angeles in the fall, he plans to continue his work with SB Nation.

“I want to do so many things all the time,” he concluded.


“Uniquely suited to the internet”

As Yeboah’s first mentor, Dave Nathan enjoyed learning about Kofie’s role with SB Nation, covering esports with inventive stats and game challenges to entertain his online audience. He wasn’t surprised about his protege’s success.

“Kofie almost seemed limited by the constraints of a regular game. I really felt that his brain was busy doing a lot more with what we were [covering on the field],” he said. “He’s the right guy at the right time for where we are in sports broadcasting. I’m sure he will continue to do big things.”

Nathan isn’t the only Raven who’s impressed by Yeboah’s work. Upper School English teacher Colby Bogie (who was not teaching at Ravenscroft when Kofie was here) said he’s been following him and his Fumble Dimension collaborator, Jon Bois, for several years.

“Not only are they funny, but in my opinion they’re also quite innovative, pioneering new forms of entertainment that are uniquely suited to the internet and current digital platforms,” he said. “Their work is aimed at a very particular niche, but within that niche I think they are among the best and most creative content producers.”

FROM THE ARCHIVES

Ravenscroft Magazine profiled Kofie in Spring 2013 as he prepared to attend the University of Maryland, which “offered him the best path to a career in sports radio.”