Danny DeBock’s path to the Corpus Christi IceRays hockey play-by-play team was unusual. DeBock’s degree is in Information Technology and Administrative Management. He was hired after previously being turned down. He was hired in a role for which he didn’t apply, and he did the job-clinching Zoom interview from the U.S. Open tennis tournament.
And he’s never broadcast hockey.
DeBock’s passion and energy, though, overcame all of it.
“This opportunity is a platform to give back to my friends, family, and mentors who’ve supported me since Day 1,” DeBock states. “I hope I can pay back those who helped me by devoting my time and energy to help the next generation of broadcasters achieve their goals. It’s also an opportunity to support the great community of Corpus Christi.”
DeBock’s title is Game Operations/PR & Marketing Coordinator. And broadcaster. STAA member Ryan Zagrzecki will broadcast home games; DeBock road contests.
DeBock’s unlikely journey started in December when he accepted his diploma from Central Washington University. He’s broadcast football, basketball, volleyball, soccer and rugby, but never hockey. It is part of the reason he didn’t hear back when he applied for an Ice Rays broadcasting/media relations opening in June. “When the job listing resurfaced in August, I hesitantly reapplied. My broadcast plans seemed to be already set in stone, with plans of calling club hockey and high school sports in Washington. Then again, I thought, ‘what do I have to lose.'”
What DeBock lacks in hockey broadcasting and media relations experience, he makes up for with passion. “The IceRays liked the passion and energy I brought in my [first] interview. Since they also had a void in the game operations position, the [idea] was to have me in charge of game operations for home games and to broadcast road games.”
The time the IceRays chose for a second Zoom interview happened to be when DeBock was at the U.S. Open tennis tournament in New York. “My mentor I went with got us courtside seats for one of the matches with the time for the interview approaching,” DeBock recalls. “When it came time, I left my front row seat and frantically looked for a place to Zoom in. It just so happened that there was one open seat on a picnic table. I darted to the seat, mounted my phone on the table’s umbrella, and it was there I accepted the job.”
DeBock had been with STAA for just two months when the IceRays gave their position description to STAA to share with members. “This lifelong Washingtonian would not be making a move to the Southwest without the help of the STAA,” DeBock declares. I’m grateful for [STAA Owner Jon Chelesnik’s] guidance, for providing insight and encouragement through my sportscasting journey.”
DeBock still gets excited when recalling his emotions upon being offered the job. “It felt surreal, being hired to call a sport I had no prior experience in calling. But the main emotion that poured out was gratitude to so many people who invested time in my personal growth.
“I look forward to what’s in store next!”