WQAQ’s ‘island’ forms new sports media organization

Lenny Neslin

After mumblings of a separation last year, the Quinnipiac Bobcats Sports Network has broken off from WQAQ and is the newest approved student media organization at Quinnipiac. The sports broadcasting group without an antenna covers Quinnipiac athletics and is supported by the University’s official athletics website.

The organization, co-directed by senior broadcast journalism majors Alex Birsh and Corey Hersch, broadcasts on a Quinnipiac-hosted stream online and allows students with a specific interest in sports media to put their skills to the test.

It wasn’t a hard breakup, however, as WQAQ General Manager Mike Farrell said the sports department was considered an “island off of WQAQ.”

“It had a huge membership, but not everyone who was a part of the sports department was really active in any other departments,” Farrell said. “We were all for it in that respect because it would kind of weed out some people who were a part of the organization, but really just members of the sports department.”

Hersch and graduate Jamie Palatini, last year’s directors of WQAQ’s sports department, came up with the idea of splitting off last semester, and last year’s WQAQ  general manager Eric Berman supported the separation.

Palatini, in his last semester at Quinnipiac, realized there wasn’t a need to be connected with the school’s radio station.

“We were a part of a very good organization in WQAQ, but we felt we could certainly thrive as our own organization,” Palatini said. “We deserved to be our own organization because there was so much interest. It opened the doors for us to have more opportunities.”

Birsh agreed.

“It was pretty simple to part ways,” Birsh said. “It was really smooth and we always thank the radio station for that.”

WQAQ simplified QBSN’s transition by purchasing a second audio box. This allows for two games to be covered at the same time with enhanced broadcasting features such as commercials and audio level adjustments.

Birsh and Hersch haven’t run into any major obstacles forming their own group, due in large part to the support of Quinnipiac athletics.

“The athletics here at Quinnipiac have always treated us really well,” Birsh said. “The fact that we are now having our own Quinnipiac Bobcats Sports Network–-the athletics were all for that and even more so.”

The 30-student organization isn’t solely for broadcast journalism majors interested in sports, as it offers a public relations department and a sports blog that features articles and photographs produced by the students.

“At the Involvement Fair, so many ears perked up because kids just want to broadcast, write about or take pictures of sports,” Birsh said. “We advertise ourselves as a full sports media department – not just a broadcasting department – and that allowed us to get more members.”

The organization covers all teams at Quinnipiac except for the tennis, cross country and acrobatics and tumbling teams. Birsh says there are talks of covering tennis for the first time this spring.

Like every organization, the bigger it gets the more opportunities there are for sub-departments to form. In QBSN’s case, Birsh envisions having a director for each sport one day.

The group currently stores its equipment in WQAQ’s closet, but Birsh said his organization is hoping to have its own office by the end of this semester or the next.

QBSN meets every Wednesday night at 9:15 in SC 213.

-Photo courtesy QBSN