If you were starving and needing to catch a fish, would you fish in a lake that has more than 200 fish, or would you fish in a lake with just one fish?
Unfortunately, trying to land a Division I football/basketball play-by-play job is like fishing in a lake with one fish and hundreds of people trying to catch it. One company, Learfield IMG College, manages most of the schools.
You must accept that looking for a DI play-by-play job is a process that is largely out of your control.
Still, there are five things you can do to enhance your chances.
1. Develop your skills
Improvement is within your control. Continue to get better. Self critique. Ask people who are already doing DI play-by-play for feedback.
2. Develop your reputation
This one is huge. You want to be known as somebody who is a good person, who is easy to work with, who is diligent and who is polite and likable. This is critical is because when a D1 job does come open, especially one in your region, you’re going to want to have a lot of people willing to go to bat for you.
3. Build relationships
This goes hand in hand with developing your reputation. When a job comes open, you want as many people who are reputable within the industry to help you earn the opportunity.
4. Be patient
The sports broadcasting job market rarely unfolds on our desired time line, so stick with it, stay focused and be determined.
5. Take a shortcut
The shortcut to a DI football/basketball job is women’s basketball play-by-play. The standard for entry is much lower because there are fewer listeners and the positions turn over more frequently. Most people doing women’s hoops want to be doing men’s basketball and football.
When you are a DI women’s basketball voice applying for a football/men’s basketball gig, you’ll have it on your resume that you are on the broadcast team at a Division I school. That makes it easier for your new school to sell you to their fan base.
Three additional things to remember when pursuing a DI gig:
- Writing the press release matters. I just alluded to it. Learfield IMG College or whoever else is hiring must be able to sell you to their fans..
- Alumni always have an advantage. .
- Most DI jobs are part time. You’re going to have to find something else to help pay your bills.