Allow me to reintroduce myself.
My name is Ryan Jecha (not HOV, sorry to any Jay-Z fans expecting that).
If you’re a regular reader of The Journal’s sports coverage, then you may remember a few pieces I did as a contributing writer last year.
This year, I’ll be writing a biweekly sports column. This will be a bit of an introductory, broad-picture piece to kick things off. So, let’s get started.
I love sports. That’s why we all get into this racket in the first place. One of my greatest passions is talking, writing, watching and debating about sports, so I feel very blessed to be able to do that here.
Most of my experience has come on the broadcasting side. I am the general manager of The Galaxy Radio, Webster University’s student-run radio station. I spent last year directing the sports broadcasts for the radio station and I am still one of the lead sports broadcasters for the station.
Calling the action for the Gorloks has given me a unique perspective and view of Webster athletics. While broadcasting a game, I look at it very differently than if I were just watching from the stands.
I can never lose track for one moment when I’m doing play-by-play or color commentary. At the same time, I have to view the game in a wide scope and bring context to the listening audience. We convey what we see as it is happening while trying to relate it to the past and set the stage for what comes next. The experience gets me more wrapped up in a game than anything else.
With that being said, one thing that I, or any sports broadcaster, must fight is to not become a fan or show fandom. This becomes especially tricky when you call games for one team or program on a regular basis.
Presenting facts in the most objective way is what we do as journalists and broadcasters. The focus of the coverage should be on the game, not on me and my personal rooting interests.
It’s my job to stay impartial when covering these games, and that’s what I intend to do. It makes for a better listening experience, and for more objective coverage. I will approach this column in the same way.
Don’t get me wrong, I wish all the best for all Webster athletics and want to see the department excel. I like when these teams succeed because, frankly, when you follow a team for a prolonged stretch, it’s much more fun if that team is winning.
That’s something the Gorloks did a lot of last year in the St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference.
Five Webster teams — volleyball, women’s cross-country, golf, baseball and women’s tennis — all won conference championships last year. Principia College had the second most with three SLIAC titles last year.
Many of these teams look poised to make championship runs again. There’s a lot of all-around talent in this program. The athletic department should be commended for bringing quality athletes to a D-III liberal arts school in suburban St. Louis. That’s no easy task.
There’s plenty of reason to be excited for Webster sports this year. I look forward to talking, writing, watching and debating about it every step of the way.
To listen to The Galaxy, Webster University’s student-run radio station, click here.