Jun 8, 2012

The New Voice

For those that don't know, many years ago I attended Utah State University with the goal of graduating in Broadcast Journalism with an emphasis on Sportscasting. Life as it does, got in the way. Instead I moved down to Salt Lake and had many wonderful opportunities and experiences with my wife and her family. And we added Logan to our family as well. I do sometimes think about what life would have been like if I graduated but I honestly don't have regrets on how life turned out.

Fast forward now about 13-14 years later and I got a text that I never EVER thought I would get. My brother-in-law Justin helps coach the local football team the Logan Stampede and they were in desperate need for someone to come in and announce at the games. So he texted me and asked if I was interested. Of course I was interested!

So a few weeks ago I announced my first game at Logan High. I didn't know exactly what to expect so I wrote a bunch of scripts beforehand and practiced and practiced around the house. I am sure my neighbors must have heard me use my announcer voice. I biked down to the stadium and walked among the players and opponents and I wondered to myself if I bit off more than I can chew. I found Justin and he took me to meet the head coach and to go to the broadcast booth. All the coach did was show me how to turn on the mike and show me my stool. 

Yeah, that was all the instruction he gave me.

I asked him for more details and he gave me the rosters for both teams and basically all he said was "Don't embarrass me or the team."

Oh boy, I was really getting nervous. There were a few small scripts for some of the sponsors all written for me and he told me that this was my show and I can do what I want. I then met the guy who ran the clock and some of the football players that didn't dress came up and did stats. I was relieved for that, they said aloud what happened on the field and then I announced it for the audience. You know, things like "18 yard reception by #80 for a first down."  That sorta thing.

"Moon river...."

I am glad that I made some scripts and I am very glad that the mom of the girl who sang the National Anthem helped me with what I should say. Soon it was game time and I got the look from the coach on the field to start the game. So I began...

The little girl next to me was the one who sang the National Anthem. I was way more nervous than she was!

I thought I did pretty good for my first time. I only screwed up a few times. I accidentally announced the wrong player (and boy did the players in the booth hassle me for that) and I said some things that really didn't come out right. I knew the calls on the field good enough but there were a few things that I had to clear up with the players.  They were really nice even though they were giving me a hard time. They were teasing me that I should watch more football and stuff like that. Finally, I had enough and I turned to them and said "Hey, I have won the Superbowl with the New York Jets five years straight in Madden, so I think I know what the hell I am talking about." First there was silence and finally they cracked up laughing.

The head coach was pretty happy with my performance and asked that I finish out the season for them. I agreed and I showed up a couple of weeks later for the last home game. 

I was much more relaxed for this game. I wrote some new scripts and was feeling very comfortable. That is until I found out that the game was being televised live!  I had to write another script announcing that to the audience.  Luckily I had some great stat people with me who made my job a whole lot easier. I hardly made any mistakes and I had a great time.

After the game I tracked down the coach to thank him for the opportunity and he was very happy with my performance. He said I had a real talent and to expect a phone call for next season. So it looks like I will be the new voice of the Logan Stampede!

Who would have thought that about a decade later I would be doing what I originally wanted to do!

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