Aaron Goldsmith, radio voice of the Seattle Mariners, on what he listens for during baseball play-by-play self critiques.
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What’s harder — asking someone on a first date or asking someone you don’t know to critique your demo?
I can give you advice on both, but I’m going to address the latter.
Bob Rathbun, play-by-play broadcaster for the Atlanta Hawks, shares what he looks for when doing self-critiques, plus tips for on-camera performance.
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.
It’s easy to let development of your on-air abilities slip during the grind of a busy broadcasting season. That’s why off-season is the perfect time to put a laser focus on advancing your play-by-play skills.
Here are four suggestions:
Recently, I heard from a young guy who is doing high school and small college play-by-play. He aspires to one day be the voice of a pro team but he’s concerned with the amount of competition job market competition.
“I am really dedicated to becoming a pro broadcaster, but it’s a bit intimidating to hear how many people are applying to jobs nowadays,” he shared with me. “I get a bit anxious.”
Totally understandable and not at all uncommon. Keep in mind, though, that you control your future. Despite your concern, keep taking steps towards your goals. Productivity decreases anxiety.
(November 11, 2015) Lewis Woodard is moving from market No. 147 to a national network. After two years in Myrtle Beach, SC, Woodard is joining Yahoo Sports Radio. The full-time position will have Woodard hosting various time slots on YSR and filling in on other Gow Media platforms, including ESPN 97.5 FM in Houston.
“It’s a terrific opportunity,” says Woodard, who has been an STAA member since 2012. “Yahoo Sports Radio sees me as an asset that it wants to develop. For the first time in my career I’ll receive in-house coaching for my on-air work.”
The fact that Yahoo Sports Radio is headquartered in Houston also appeals to Woodard. “I’m moving to a city with the Texans, Rockets and Astros,” he says. “Texas A&M isn’t far away, either. As a sports fan and a talk show host, it’s exciting to know what my media credential is about to give me access to. Hosting on a national platform, you also have a much wider selection of topics to dive into on-air. And it’s a step up financially.”
Yahoo Sports Radio has hired more than 10 STAA members over the years. When Program Director Craig Larson told STAA CEO Jon Chelesnik that he had another opening, Chelesnik sent to Larson the link to Woodard’s STAA Talent Page. “Within 48 hours I had a full time contract offer to join a national network located in a top 10 market,” says Woodard.
“Simply put, without STAA this opportunity wouldn’t have existed for me,” Woodard says. “Without an education in communications or radio, I’ve had to self teach and self critique throughout the years to learn and get better. STAA’s resources have been invaluable in that pursuit. Jon has also worked with me in private and group critique settings. There’s no doubt that STAA has made me a better talk show host.”
(Visit Lewis’s STAA Talent Page).
With the cancellation or postponement of games, sportscasters nationwide are being challenged economically and emotionally for the foreseeable future because they’re losing opportunities to do what they love in covering sports.
As we all begin to grapple with the impact of COVID-19 in our lives, we invited members of the sports broadcasting community to share stories, feelings, frustrations, and strategies for staying positive.
The result was an encouraging 2-hour conversation with sportscasters from around the country. In this post we’re sharing some of the key takeaways, plus the audio and video replay of the community chat.
My senior year at the Princeton of the Plains, Kansas State University, I took a storytelling class from a wonderful women named Charlotte McFarland. The purpose was to develop spontaneity and on camera performance.
The local cable TV station filmed our class doing our final storytelling performances of the semester. When I watched my segment air one week later, my first thought was, “You sure are a handsome guy Jon.” My second thought was, “Love the pink paisley shirt.” My third thought was, “Dude, you have no camera presence. You look nervous, you look scared, you look reserved and you’re mumbling.” So, I went about trying to fix those things.
I don’t know that I’ve improved much, but here are some top tips for improving your on camera performance.
An STAA member called me to vent about the job market. He’s been a small and mid-market sportscaster for more than a decade but has struggled to earn bigger opportunities. I asked him what he’s doing to follow-up his applications. His answer stunned me. In short, he said he doesn’t follow-up – that is ability should speak for itself and that he didn’t feel he should have to “brown nose” anyone for the sake of getting a job.
Wow! My jaw nearly cracked when it hit the floor.