Sports reporting job a crazy journey

Tyler Job, Sports Editor

I’m not sure where to begin.

To be honest, I wasn’t even interested in sports until 10 years ago. I’ve been a WWE fan for most of my life, but that’s sports entertainment, not actual sports.

I’m not sure what got me interested in sports, but for some reason it stuck with my one day and I haven’t looked back since. I remember getting interested watching a Packers game in 2009.

It turns out I got interested in watching sports at the right time. I remember seeing the Packers winning the Super Bowl, the Brewers winning their first division title since 1982, and the Blackhawks winning the Stanley Cup in 2015 like yesterday. Now Giannis Antetokounmpo is leading the Bucks to their first potential NBA title since 1971.

The more I watched sports, the more I got interested in writing. Not sure why, but it was fun for me for some reason.

So I started writing sports in my senior year of high school, and took my skills to the Royal Purple in my sophomore year. I PA announced several men’s soccer games in my freshman year and decided to get back on the writing grind the year after.

I didn’t know what was expected of me my first semester writing here because I actually first got involved for Journalism 251 credit [I know, I took a one credit course to write for the school paper, but that didn’t matter to me]. All I wanted to do was write.

So I just started writing week-by-week and figured out maybe I finally found out something that suits me. My first-ever in-person interview was with former women’s soccer star Brianna Reid after she set the program record for most career goals [she has an incredible 61 of them], and I remember thinking to myself, that was pretty cool. She was also very nice to me, so thanks for that.

So I went up to former sports editor Justin St. Peter [thank you for everything you’ve taught me, by the way] and requested a write for women’s soccer for the rest of the semester. He didn’t hesitate to granted me my request.

The more I wrote, the more I got comfortable with my writing style, the working environment, and most importantly, communicating with my co-workers and sources. I felt I was ready enough to apply for a sports editorial position in May 2017.

I applied. I interviewed. I was confident.

But I didn’t get it, and was offered Assistant News Editor instead.

I respectfully turned down the offer. Now, I’m sure for those of you who are reading this are ask ingyourself, why did you do that? What’s wrong with trying something new? Because news is boring. Sports is where it’s at.

So I started expanding my writing skills a little more my junior year by writing a couple of features on women’s soccer star Anna Boyd’s upstart careet and former women’s basketball player Andrea Meinert journey all the way back from tearing her ACL.

I applied for a sports editorial position again in May 2018, hoping this time I’d get it.

This time, I finally got it.

I remember feeling overwhelmed and humbled when Dr. Zukas sent me the confirmation email one morning in May. I could not refuse the offer.

While I was quite excited, I was freaking out a little bit because I did not know the requirements for being a sports editor. So I quickly asked former editors Justin St. Peter and Kolton Hegstrom on requirements and recommendations.

Turns out within the first couple of weeks of my new job last fall, it was not as bad as I thought [even though I have to keep track of an entire writing staff, attend 3-4 meetings per week, write my own articles and look over every one else’s on the sports staff]. Yes, it’s a lot of damn work, but at least I managed it.

At the same time I started as sports editor, I also secured my WISN 12 internship in Milwaukee. There, I learned what life is like the with the big dogs covering several Operation Football and Bucks games, and first-hand seeing the chaos that is TV journalism when the talent is not on-the-air [shout out to Dan Needles, Stephanie Sutton and Stephen Watson for hammering that to a tee and teaching me a few new things as well].

I can say that I’m one of the few people who’s interviewed Giannis, Khris Middleton, Eric Bledsoe, and head coach Mike Budenholzer. But I didn’t get a cookie for doing any of that. I just kept working [also, you have no clue how tall Giannis actually is. I had to block my face video recording him because he’s so freaking tall].

Oh, and I also called all Warhawk football games with the one and only Connor Moore last semester. If you haven’t ever talked to Connor, I highly recommend you do so.

My final semester writing here kicked in, and I decided to try something different. I’m sure you’ve heard of a certain individual named Jake Kumerow, so I thought of reaching out to him and talk to him about his career up to this point. Even though he’s a professional football player, he was one of the most chill and personable individuals I’ve ever interviewed.

Now after all of these articles, interviews and everything in between, here I am writing my final piece for the Royal Purple. I have several to people to thank below, so  just bear with me.

To begin, of course thanks to my family and friends. You challenged me to keep going and excelled at that. Love ya’ll.

Thanks to Justin St. Peter. Known you for a long time, and you taught me a lot about sports reporting and are the right person to do so. I’d be happy to chat with you on Twitter about anything Wisconsin sports anytime.

Thanks to Kolton Hegstrom. You really set the tone for the next sports editor and I hope I did okay with that. Thanks for getting me prepared for this role.

Thanks to Erika Marion for putting up with my orders and recommendations as your boss in the sports department. Didn’t know what to expect from you in such a new role, but you did alright [just kidding, you improved significantly]. Stay confident in yourself.

Thanks to Connor Moore. You’re the man, the myth, the legend. That’s all I have to say. Too sweet my man.

Thanks to Ben Pierce. I don’t go two minutes without laughing about something ridiculous or sarcastic you say. I just laughed again for some reason.

Thanks to Nicole Aimone. You and Ben decided to grant me the sports editor spot and fully appreciate that. Your playful arguments  with Ben always calmed down the newsroom, as ironic as that sounds.

Thanks to the Royal Purple editors, staff writers, and advisors, past and present. I thought we all co-existed pretty well for the past three years. You know who you are.

Thanks to Chris Lindeke. You’re as reliable as they come and you’ve put up with my constant emails for the past three years to help me connect with sources.

Thanks to all the athletes and coaches for allowing me to help get stories to come together. They don’t get done without you.

Okay, I think that’s everybody. If you read this and I didn’t mention you, I apologize. Just please don’t take offense to it.

If you decide to ever go back and read an archive, I just hope you appreciate the text under my name, at least a little bit.