Bryan Kelly does a Gator chomp after joining SportScene. Photo from @ByronSaxton on Twitter

Gator Alum Bryan Kelly Talks WWE & Time at Florida

Bryan Kelly is a former Gator and current WWE announcer/reporter. He joined Sportscene with Steve Russell to discuss his career with WWE and his time at Florida.


Kelly graduated from the University of Florida’s college of journalism and communications in 2003. Kelly attributed his success and preparation for the broadcast world to Florida and his time working at WRUF and WUFT.

Kelly’s Unconventional Beginnings

After graduating Kelly got a job working for a news station in Jacksonville covering local news, sports and traffic. Although he focused on the journalism side of sports, he always kept his WWE dream alive. Kelly’s transition from broadcast news to the WWE was anything but conventional.

Kelly had gotten a job offer to start his wrestling career in the small market of Wichita, Kansas. However, he took the job in Jacksonville because he couldn’t see himself thriving in that environment. He took the associate producer job in Jacksonville and was able to pursue covering wrestling in his spare time.

Kelly continuously was looking for a way to transition into the world of wrestling and got his first shot through a WWE reality show. Kelly sent in application VHS tapes and on his second attempt was invited to a two-day tryout in California, in which he didn’t make the cut. A year later, Kelly went to another tryout, this time in Daytona Beach, and once again didn’t make the cut.

Soon after, Kelly got a real opportunity at his dream. After making connections within the WWE, Kelly was invited to Atlanta for a show and meeting with the top brass. Then, he was invited down to a show in Orlando where they offered him a spot within the organization.

A Wrestler & a Journalist

Kelly started in a developmental league called Florida Championship Wrestling and was given every opportunity he could have asked for. After his time there, he was brought up to the WWE as a wrestler and commentator before suffering an injury. After his injury, the organization guided him toward the commentator side of the business because of his broadcast background.

Kelly says that the key to the WWE and wrestling is the ability to tell a story through characters. The ability to instill emotion, whether good or bad, is the main goal of the WWE and its characters. He’s happy where he and the WWE are today, as they continue to be one of the most popular syndicated programs around the world.

You can catch Kelly ringside or interviewing your favorite heroes and villains on Monday Night Raw and NXT Level Up every week.

Bryan Kelly on Twitter: @Byron Saxton

About Marshall Tempest

I am a student at the University of Florida majoring in sports journalism with a certificate in sports management. I am 22 years old, from Orlando Florida and plan to graduate in the fall of 2023.

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