YSN Sports - Isaiah Alexander

When they present themselves, it is up to you to decide if they are worthwhile or not. I took an opportunity when Mr. Jaime Rivera, President of the YSN Sports Broadcasting Academy offered it to me. It was just too big of a chance to miss.

September 18th, 2012 was an adventure of a lifetime! I’m a 15 year-old sophomore at Corona High School located in southern California and was one of three students chosen to job shadow the Mr. Larry Burnett, voice of the LA Sparks’ and YSN Sports Broadcasting Academy faculty member, versus the Phoenix Mercury home game at the Staples Center.

From the production meeting, to the interview with player Nneka Ogwumike, to interviewing the head coaches, discussing the strategy plan of the game, Mr. Burnett showed his experience through ways that kept my peers, our parents, and me in the tight hold of excitement. When we first entered Staples Center, the area was in the final stages of preparation for the game. And even then, the entire building was electric. I felt the energy from the bustling cameramen, the jumbotron, and from Mr. Burnett himself. When I first got the chance to put my hands on the equipment, I was in awe! I was completely speechless. Every answer I had about broadcasting was answered in only a few minutes, just thanks to a headset! The feeling was alien, yet welcoming. Me…a teenager working alongside the professionals! The only thing more excited than me was the crowd. They were completely on fire! For the two-hour game, they never let up as the Los Angeles Sparks’ clinched the number two seed in the playoffs with the victory.

After the game, the night still wasn’t over as we all head backed to the production meeting room. A final review of the day commenced as Mr. Burnett left the table open to answer any questions we had. Then that was it, the entire day, job-shadow and experience was over. Before I left, was able to conduct an on-camera interview with Mr. Burnett himself. I was the first in my class, and probably the first on the west coast side of the YSN Sports Broadcasting Academy to interview someone like Mr. Burnett. The entire night was a complete lesson of what it was really like to be a professional sportscaster. As I made my journey home, Mr. Burnett’s advice was still ringing in my head. He said that hard work, organization and preparation make a great sportscaster.

Isaiah Alexander, Graduate
YSN Sports Broadcasting Academy