Homer Glen man earns Golden Microphone
BY MEGAN PIOTROWSKI For The Herald-News May 4, 2012 2:30PM
Jay Modelski, of Homer Glen, is shown in the studio of WONC-FM (89.1), North Central College's student-run radio station. Modelski is part of a four-member team that won a national award for best sports play-by-play broadcast. | Photo courtesy of North Central College
Updated: June 14, 2012 8:05AM
Just as sports teams have their “go-to” guys to turn to when a big play is needed, students at North Central College in Naperville have “go-to” guys for sports on the school’s radio station.
One of the voices delivering sports scores and more — and in award-winning fashion — is Jay Modelski, a Homer Glen resident and graduate of Providence Catholic High School in New Lenox.
Modelski, 21, and three of his fellow broadcasters recently were named recipients of the Best Sports Play-By-Play award by the Intercollegiate Broadcasting System’s national college journalism competition.
At the awards presentation in New York, their broadcast of North Central’s victory over Wheaton College in a Nov. 5 football game beat submissions from other student journalists across the country, including from schools such as Northwestern University.
“I was kind of shocked, excited and surprised all at the same time when I learned that we had won,” Modelski said.
His peers at WONC-FM (89.1) — Kevin Jackman, Trevor Magnotti and Jonny Kaufmann — also helped win the Golden Microphone trophy from the IBS.
“Without the other three guys, it wouldn’t have been possible,” Modelski said.
He said the game they called that earned the award involved a heated rivalry. While it was a close game at first, North Central ended up beating Wheaton College pretty handily, 33-7.
“North Central was nationally ranked last year, and they had a really good season,” he said.
Modelski said he’s always been interested in sports in general, but he especially enjoys baseball and hockey. He played baseball at Providence, and for two years at Joliet Junior College. But an injury prompted him to shift his focus away from playing baseball and toward broadcasting.
“Not playing sports anymore is weird for me, but being able to broadcast the games fills the void,” Modelski, who is majoring in broadcast communication, said.
“School is my top priority now,” he said, “and I am just trying to get the best grades possible.”
“I am not quite sure what I want to do yet,” he said, “but broadcasting professionally in the future is one of my goals.”