As a Waynesburg University freshman, Brandon Williams had every intention of pursuing a career in sports announcing. Williams said that he had his sights set on becoming the next Jim Nantz or Al Michaels. However, Williams’ vision shifted the further he progressed academically. Because of his enrollment in the Department of Communication's freshman-level courses, Williams said that he began to get a taste of different areas of communication which he would not have considered beforehand, such as graphic design, radio and production. This is when Williams “fell in love with the behind-the-scenes stuff.”
While Williams now stays behind the camera, he is ahead of the game in his field. The Sports Broadcasting and Sports Information senior has found his niche working as a Freelance Operations Runner. According to Williams, this “entails making sure everyone is taken care of on the production side,” of a sports broadcast. His duties have ranged from ensuring a producer has coffee to providing transportation for an announcer.
Williams received his first big break working the 2016 U.S. Open at Oakmont, an opportunity that he said was only made possible because of his proven dedication to Department productions, which resulted in trust and respect from professor Bill Molzon.
“Once I started working for WUSN (Waynesburg University Sports Network) and WCTV (Waynesburg Community Television), [Molzon] got comfortable with me,” said Williams.
“He was comfortable enough to send me to work for a major sports network like Fox Sports, and I did that in 2016 for the U.S. Open at Oakmont.”
After that initial major production, Williams continued to carry on the momentum–all around the country in fact.
“From there, I tried to work hard, and finally I got to the point where people would call me to work for their productions,” said Williams.
“I’ve been all over the United States working major sports productions.”
When asked if he feels like he gives up a lot in exchange for working and traveling as often as he does, Williams casually replied, “I don’t know if I’d call it 'giving up' because if you want to be in this business, you want to give up your Saturday to work for WUSN and give up Wednesday nights and many hours of the day.”
He said that, if anything, he’s immensely benefited from these commitments. Williams has gained practical experience, networking opportunities and life-long friendships, in exchange for a lot of his free time. Williams sees this as a reasonable trade-off.
“You have less free time than other people do, but in terms of sacrificing, I don’t think there’s a major sacrifice,” said Williams.
As one who sees hard work as a mentality rather than a measure of skill, Williams pushes others to always work hard and take advantage of the opportunities that are presented them. More than anything, Williams encourages students to keep open minds about what their future profession may look like.
“Don’t be afraid to try new things,” said Williams.
“I came into Waynesburg wanting to be an announcer. Do as much as you can, really, and maybe you’ll find something different than you initially came to Waynesburg for.”
Be like Brandon
If you're interested in getting involved in sports broadcasting like Brandon, enroll in our Electronic Media degree. This Bachelor of Arts can prepare you for work behind the scenes in sports, news and film.