Some feel my job as a sportscaster is glamorous. And while I tell people it beats a real job, there are times I scratch my head and wonder what in the world I was thinking. The pay is not great and the hours are long. You might say it’s a labor of love.
Sometimes, however, the job does have its privileges and this past weekend was one of those times.
While I’m always excited to call a game, I would hardly call the trip to Jefferson City, Mo. a privilege or a perk. However, what came after will linger in my mind for quite some time.
Following the Tigers 24-21 win over the Blue Tigers, Callie and I headed across the capital city of Missouri to the Learfield Sports studios. Learfield is holds the radio rights for about 50 Division I universities including Kansas State and six others from the Big 12 as well as the likes of Alabama, Penn State, Wisconsin, North Carolina and the University of Miami to name a few.
On this particular Saturday, the Jefferson City studio was originating about 22 football games and sending them to each school’s affiliates via satellite. It was amazing to see Iowa State and Texas playing on the TV and the Cyclone radio broadcast being run right next to us.
Our adventure continued Sunday at Arrowhead Stadium.
Mitch Holthus, “Voice of the Chiefs,” has been trying to get Callie (a Denver Bronco fan, I might add) to a Chiefs game for quite some time, and this particular weekend worked for our schedules.
After dealing with an angry security lady, who Callie was about to get into a throw-down with, we finally made our way up to the press level. While impressive, the new press box is extremely far from the playing field. We’re told it’s the second highest broadcast vantage point in the NFL.
After checking out the digs, we decided to make our way down to the field. On the way we passed Chiefs’ coach Todd Haley and his family. On the way back, we passed Adrian Peterson in the tunnel. While I resisted asking him for at least two touchdowns to help my fantasy football team, he did say hello to Callie.
After our tour of the new club level, which has about everything for everybody who’s willing to pay for it, we made our way to our seats in the general press area. We probably did as much people watching as we did game watching.
Halftime included a trip to the Chiefs Radio Network broadcast booth. Thanks to Mitch, we were allowed to stay in the booth for the entire second half.
For me, it was fascinating to watch the inner workings of an NFL radio broadcast. It was also interesting to watch “the big boys” deal with some of the same technical issues we work with at our level. I appreciate what we’re able to do for our FHSU broadcasts with a fraction of the staff.
Weekends like this remind me how fortunate I am to work in an industry where an NFL radio network is willing to let two local broadcasters from Western Kansas hang with them for a day. Kind of makes all of the long hours worth it.