Sports Broadcasting: Get Ready To Travel

BY BEN KANE | Ball State Sports Link

I am a firm believer everyone is presented with different opportunities in life every day. It is whether or not we take those opportunities and make something of them.

In late October, I was presented with an opportunity.

Me (left) with Jack Kizer on a Ball State women’s volleyball broadcast earlier this season.

Since my freshman year of high school, I have had a passion for radio and broadcasting. It has been a long road in my short, four-year path.

After given a chance to call a softball game during the spring of 2014, I turned my opportunity into a high school career of calling sporting events. From football to basketball, to baseball and softball.

Now, as a freshman in college, I am writing a new chapter in my broadcasting career.

Ball State’s school radio station, 91.3 WCRD, in lieu of both the men’s and women’s basketball seasons starting, asked for aspiring broadcasters interested in calling games this winter.

Seeing my opportunity, I jumped. What better way to continue my career than call Division I basketball?

Knowing my odds to be the play-by-play voice were low, I decided to aim for the women’s color position. A realistic goal that will get my foot in the door for future opportunities. A series of interviews were held with each person interested in the same position I am in.

As I waited for my interview, I flashed back to one of my most memorable moments as a broadcaster.

“30 seconds, Ben.”

Courtside on a radio call at Banker’s Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis.

The lights, almost blinding, shine bright from the rafters onto the court below of the aged, yet beautiful Banker’s Life Fieldhouse in downtown Indianapolis.

Players begin to take the floor for warmups, a squeak following every step. As nerves hit every player on the hardwood, I am nervous along with them. The stage is set for them. And I am here to capture it on the radio. It almost doesn’t feel real.

Is this actually happening? Am I really about to call a basketball game from a professional basketball arena?

Yeah, it’s happening. And in less than 10 seconds, I am about to live it. With my script in hand and mind wiped clean, I close my eyes before the craziness ensues.

“3… 2… 1. Ben, you’re live.”

“Ben… you’re up.”

Completely lost, I snapped back. Fellow Sports Link member, Mick Tidrow brings me back to reality as his interview wrapped up and I am motioned into the room.

Here was my chance.

All of a sudden, a rush of nervousness and sweat took over my body. It was as if the door was a shower of anxiety. Someone told me before the interview not to worry too much, but my mind told me otherwise.

I hadn’t even sat down, and I was already in mental distress. After a few deep breathes, my butterflies subdued themselves. I said I was interested in the women’s color position, and I was met with a statement I wasn’t quite ready for.

Get ready to travel.

It had never crossed my mind this would be a traveling gig. Not that travel is an issue, but this was this first time it hit me. Like I slammed into a brick wall. All it took were four words.

Get ready to travel.

I shuffled out of the conference room after the interview with those same four words ringing in my head. But for good reason. It made me feel like a professional, traveling to different places to call games. It isn’t a paid job, but as I walked down the hall that evening, I couldn’t help but feel awe. It was all because of four simple words.

Get ready to travel.

Author: Sports Link Staff

Sports Link showcases Cardinal student-athletes’ accomplishments on the field, in the classroom and within the surrounding community. Follow @bsusportslink on all social media platforms.

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