Rising Star Ashley Haas: “The best advice I can give to prevent burnout is to be yourself”

The best advice I can give for women wanting to enter the sports world is to be yourself, don’t be someone you think you have to be. I’m goofy and I’m outspoken, but that makes me different and being yourself will make you stand out. My favorite quote states, “I would rather fail as myself, […]

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The best advice I can give for women wanting to enter the sports world is to be yourself, don’t be someone you think you have to be. I’m goofy and I’m outspoken, but that makes me different and being yourself will make you stand out. My favorite quote states, “I would rather fail as myself, than succeed as someone else”

I had the pleasure to interview Ashley Haas. Ashley is an American born model, represented by Elite Model Management in New York City. She has worked with many top designers including Tom Ford, Donna Karen, and Victoria Secret. She was on the hit HBO show, “The Sopranos” and starred in the film “American Fango”. After graduating college from Drexel University with honors, she went on to study improv at Upright Citizens Brigade. Improv has been very helpful with her weekly NFL sports gambling show which you can find on YouTube and IGTV. Ashley’s NFL prediction record from 2018 was 68% against the spread, while Vegas held a record of only 55%. Ashley is the perfect combination of a pretty girl who doesn’t mind being silly and taking big risks. She’s classy yet crass, funny, and highly knowledgeable about all sports especially football. She knows more about sports then most men do. (Her Dad really wanted a boy) Ashley was raised by her flight attendant single mother and her grandfather would watch her while her mom was away. Ashley spent a lot of time with her grandfather and he was a compulsive gambler. He would take her to the racetracks as a child to bet on horses. She knew odds, gambling, and statistics before her times table. She used her love of sports and knowledge about odds and statistics to create a sports gambling show. But you won’t find her gambling herself, she just helps others make money!

Thank you so much for doing this with us! Can you tell us the story of how you grew up?

My mother is a very special woman. She raised me as a single mom working two jobs. One of which was as a flight attendant, so when she would have to fly a trip, my grandfather would watch me. My grandpa was the most lovable man, but his major flaw was his compulsive gambling habits he picked up after fighting in WWII. When I was about 6 years old, he would take me to billiards bars. He would say “My granddaughter and I verse you for $200.” He only needed to break first, because he would sink every ball after. Then he would take his hustled winnings and me to the racetrack. I knew about odds and statistics before I even knew my times tables. My mom would come home from work, and ask me what I learned in school, my response was, “Bet on the horse least expected to win, it pays out the most.” So needless to say, my childhood wasn’t normal. But it sure was fun!

Can you share a story with us about what brought you to this specific career path?

My dad really wanted a boy, so I grew up being the boy my Dad always wanted. We would watch every game together. Having learned about odds and statistics from my grandfather, I created my NFL prediction show against the spread. Taking my two male role models first loves, sports and gambling.

Can you tell us the most interesting story that happened to you since you began your career?

I was fortunate enough to go to the super bowl this year and I met my idol Peyton Manning. Sadly, he was really mean and dismissive to me. It was the equivalent of a child meeting Santa Claus and Santa being very mean. It really crushed me, but I have met many amazing NFL players who do take me seriously and appreciate the fact that I want to transition into a predominantly male oriented world. Most players, coaches, and owners have been very supportive. One day Peyton and my path will cross again, and I can dismiss him! Maybe I will even hum “Nation Wide is on your side”. (From the TV commercial he does)

Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?

There are so many, where should I start?! I am far from perfect! I should make a blooper reel. I can’t even count the amount of times I was filming and forget which team I was just talking about. Once I even said my last name wrong, that was an all-time personal low.

What are some of the most interesting or exciting projects you are working on now?

Well I have a TV show I’m working on, but I’m going to have to keep that top secret for now. ☺

We are very interested in diversity in the entertainment industry. Can you share three reasons with our readers about why you think it’s important to have diversity represented in film and television? How can that potentially affect our culture?

Diversity is very important and that’s why I love football so much! It is not about the color of your skin, your religion, or your sexual preference. Fans only care if you can play the game. In a predominantly male oriented world, I am a minority and fight the stereotype that women don’t know as much about sports. I have to work twice as hard to prove myself. I have made predictions that were wrong, male broadcasters get a pass while I have gotten comments on my videos saying “Get back in the kitchen you don’t know sports!” and my response is, “Trust me you don’t want me in the kitchen, I’m a terrible cook!” I have thick skin, coming from a modeling background I’m used to rejection and never being perfect in everyone’s eyes. I love to debate and change a tough critics mind. I just have to beat my mom to debating them. No one messes with her baby girl!

What are your “5 things I wish someone told me when I first started” and why. Please share a story or example for each.

1. I wish someone warned me I wouldn’t be sleeping much. Games are three days a week, Thursday, Sunday, and Monday. On Wednesday teams hold practice and that’s when you can see who’s injured and who can most likely play. That leaves just Tuesday and Friday to research, film, and edit all while I still model full time. Working two full time jobs is time consuming and exhausting. I have a collection of photos taken of me editing while on a photoshoot, in a Halloween costume, even once in a hospital gown in the ER. I will never miss a deadline. I just miss sleeping. lol

2. Not all men will take you seriously. The sports world is very hard for women to break into. But just keep proving people wrong and that you do belong! If you believe in yourself, they will believe in you as well.

3. Your dating life will be a lot harder. Men think they want a girl who knows about sports, but they really don’t. I always know more about football than my dates do. And on Sunday when I want to watch 10 hours of football, they usually want to have brunch and shop. I find myself in a role reversal. Watching a man try on clothes, while I sit in a chair yelling, hurry the game is almost on!

4. Fans are very sensitive about their teams. I’m a risk taker and my show is an example of that. I have a section called “The Good, The Bad, and What the F*%$ Were They Thinking”. I like to poke fun at players and call them out on their mistakes. I don’t want to be the boring broadcaster; I would rather take the heat from fans and tell it how it really is!

5. Always keep educating yourself. Its ok to not know everything. I have to watch countless hours of interviews to hear how to pronounce certain players names correctly. It is ok to admit you might not know something, as long as you are willing to take the time to learn!

Which tips would you recommend to your colleagues in your industry to help them to thrive and not “burn out”?

The best advice I can give for women wanting to enter the sports world is to be yourself, don’t be someone you think you have to be. I’m goofy and I’m outspoken, but that makes me different and being yourself will make you stand out. My favorite quote states, “I would rather fail as myself, than succeed as someone else”

You are a person of enormous influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂

My cousin Brianna has special needs and I grew up watching how hard it was for her to find friends in school and play sports without being judged. If I could use my influence for the good of mankind, I would like to encourage everyone to be kind to one another. Kindness is so important and its free! It costs you nothing and means everything! Bullying is an issue I would love to see go away.

None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?

I have amazing friends that have all pushed me to keep pursuing my dreams. I want to thank one dear friend in particular, who was also my next-door neighbor, Dhani Jones. When Dhani was playing for the Eagles in Philadelphia, he gave me tickets to my first ever football game. It was amazing! Even though they lost that game, hearing the crowd sing and chant, being in that stadium felt like home. I knew then my love for football was only going to keep growing.

Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?

A dream doesn’t become reality through magic; it takes sweat, determination and hard work.

Is there a person in the world, or in the US whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might just see this, especially if we tag them. 🙂

That’s a great question and hard to pick just one person. Erin Andrews would be the person I would most want to have lunch with. Erin paved the way for women in sports broadcasting. She’s beautiful, knowledgeable about sports, and I really respect her work ethic! I would love to hear her stories of how she broke into the world of sports broadcasting, because it’s not easy to do or deal with all the criticism and she did it all with such grace and class.

How can our readers follow you on social media?

Yes Please! My Instagram is @ashleysarahaas and my Youtube channel is

This was very meaningful, thank you so much!

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