WSCR-AM boss stresses social media during talk at St. Xavier
BY STEVE METSCH firstname.lastname@example.org April 26, 2013 9:26PM
Mitch Rosen, program director of WSCR-AM, "The Score," talks about sport radio with St. Xavier University sophomore Brandon Swanson, sports director at the student radio station WXAV, after an appearance at the school Tuesday. | Steve Metsch~Sun-Times Media
Updated: May 29, 2013 6:12AM
Mitch Rosen, program director of WSCR-AM (670) “The Score,” sports talk station, had cautionary advice Tuesday morning for St. Xavier University students hoping for careers in sports radio.
They should be prepared to not earn much money, if and when they find jobs. They also should be diverse and use social media, as the radio station does by using Facebook, Twitter and its website to generate interest. Some on-air talent have 30,000 to 40,000 followers on Twitter, Rosen said.
“At the risk of sounding as a wet blanket, I try to discourage people from getting into the traditional sports radio business,” he said. “Jobs are more and more scarce, and when people find them, they don’t tend to pay that well.”
Rosen spoke at the “Breakfast With the Experts” event sponsored by the Beverly Area Planning Association.
“The reality of today’s job market does not make it worth pursuing. But there’s a bright spot. The way social media has transcended into sports radio, my advice is to not go into traditional sports radio,” Rosen told students. “Get into more social media. Find ways to communicate your thoughts, comments and opinions through other social media.”
The advice wasn’t lost on a table of broadcasting students, who all held up their hands when asked for a show of hands from those with Twitter accounts.
Sophomore Brandon Swanson, a mass communications major and sports director of the university’s student radio station, WXAV, was not discouraged.
“You have to go to social media a lot more. You just have to work a little harder. You need to know that, and you have to be well-rounded. I want to be in play-by-play, (but) if that doesn’t work out, I’d like to go into sports business with a team,” said Swanson, whose minor is business management.
Despite his pessimistic view of job opportunities in sports radio, Rosen, whose career began working with legendary late-night radio host Eddie Schwartz, said he loves going to work each day from his home in Chicago’s Beverly community.
“We know people are very passionate about sports. Sports radio gives people a vehicle to (voice) their thoughts, frustrations and praise. In a city like Chicago, media people are the celebrities,” Rosen said.
He said dealing with those celebrities and their Chicago-size egos can be challenging.
“People ask what I do and I say I’m a shrink. Like a lot of us, they have big egos. You manage them,” Rosen said.