By HANNAH GENIG, SPORTS EDITOR
For the past two years, I have spent most of my Saturday afternoons looking at one of my favorite views in the entire world: the green grass of the Big House field.
Typically, my view is supplemented by a sea of wobbly 20-somethings who let their pre-game tailgating get the best of them. Typically, I sit just 30 rows away from some of my favorite athletes whose careers I follow religiously.
Each week, I listen to the deafening chants that flow through the exciting student section and constantly think to myself “I have the best seat in the house.”
That is, until the game against Rutgers on Nov. 7.
On this special day, rambunctious students were replaced by a variety of big-time writers from EPSN, Fox Sports, etc., while pom poms and flags were replaced by recorders and Macbooks.
Most importantly, my view was no longer confined to the 20-yard line. This time I had the pleasure of seeing the entire beautiful stadium, due to my new and improved aerial view from the press box.
With this particular Saturday being my first time as the press, I had absolutely no idea what to expect, besides the lethal mix of nervousness and excitement that I would likely experience.
It was not until I sat down in my front row seat and turned around to see both a Jacksonville Jaguars recruiter and CBS sportswriter Ashley Scoby that I realized I was amidst the big leagues of sports journalism.
It was incredible for me to witness the degree of knowledge every single one of the reporters had. From very specific statistics to overall league standings to Michigan football history, it seemed as if everyone in the box lived and breathed sports.
Luckily, I have always been a sports person. My childhood obsession with creating stat books, memorizing depth charts and watching ESPN daily prepared me for this type of experience. While we were seated before the game, I heard a conversation to my left about the recent loss to Michigan State and one to my right discussing Tom Brady and the Patriots. That is precisely when I knew these were my kind of people.
While college football is definitely fun to watch every Saturday, it is no joking matter when it comes to reporting. I am convinced that a person can have the sports knowledge of John Madden, but if they are not quick thinkers and quick writers, they have no business being in a press box. Not only is it imperative to publish a final game story before the competing papers, it is also important to be constantly brainstorming potential story ideas and interview questions, all while watching the game.
In addition to the overwhelming enjoyment I had being involved with the press for the first time, I can honestly say I walked away with even more respect for people in this field. Sports journalism is just as competitive as the games being covered. With the help of excellent guidance and a wonderful experience with my favorite team, I am even more solidified in my choice to pursue this endeavor.