A bearded man with fire red hair idles next to his chiseled baseball playing co-anchor as they prepare the first podcast of many.
While students may recognize the duo around campus, soon only their voices will be heard on the air waves.
Seniors Jared Rubado and Clay Collison will soon release the first edition of their “J and Clay Show,” a series focused on sports at Augustana University.
Rubado and Collison, who will broadcast their first podcast after Thanksgiving, plan to interview student athletes, announce Augustana sports news and scores, and talk about topical professional and college sports.
Rubado and Collison plan to interview different athletes every week. The two podcasters have a number of questions in mind.
“Our plan is to ask interesting and exciting questions that will grab other students’ attention as well as challenge athletes to give us a unique answer,” Rubado said.
While podcasting, previously known as audioblogging, has been around since the 1980s, podcasts are at an all-time high in sports, according to the sports website, Complex.com.
“We wanted to start podcasting not only because we enjoy sports, but also to get our Augustana community on board with the future of this branch of journalism,” Collison said.
Rubado said starting this sports podcasting team will help him gain experience in digital platforms, but might also inspire other students at Augustana to try audio journalism.
“This experience will not only give me another thing to put on my resume, but it will teach me new things, such as learning how to produce and edit digital media,” Rubado said. “After graduation, I want to go into broadcasting and work for a radio show and this experience will give me a head start on what to expect.”
Collison had been part of a podcasting team at the University of Kearney before transferring to Augustana in 2017. He said that his previous experiences would help the team grab the audience’s attention and create a positive atmosphere for sports journalism on campus.
“We want to work towards our future in other platforms of media while connecting with students on campus,” Collison said.
Rubado wrote for the sports section of the Mirror from 2014-2016. While currently a journalism student, Rubado has been following sports since he was a kid.
“I played sports in high school, but when that ended, I had more time to watch games, but I’ve always loved sports,” Rubado said.
Collison and Rubado said that they know it will be difficult to find enough listeners, but they hope that future students who take on the challenge of podcasting will expand on the audience that they create.
John Zich, from USA today, reported that there are more than 115,000 English-language podcasts available on the internet. According to one survey in 2017, 42 million Americans above the age of 12 listen to podcasts at least once on a weekly basis.
Augustana won’t be the only focus for the “J and Clay Show,” but other college teams will be covered in addition to professional teams. Rubado and Collison’s podcasting team can be related to the Mike & Mike Show where they take viewers inside sports by profiling players and analyzing team strategies while still providing entertainment for listeners.
Rubado and Collison are confident they can produce quality work and have done over 20 hours of practice and review with Jeffrey Miller, the advisor of the Mirror at Augustana.
The future of Rubado and Collison’s podcasting is a main focus when it comes to their goals. They not only hope that this will be a huge step in helping students at Augustana grow, but that every section of The Mirror will have their own podcast.
“[The podcasts] would become the main source of news, which is what our future is leaning on,” Collison said. “Jared and I also hope that by starting this podcast, it will expand our work area. We hope that Augustana prepares a room where students are able to have all the technology available to do a podcasting session.”
Rubado and Collison are determined to attract a wide variety of listeners. They hope it will catch the attention of current students and faculty, but also people around the community and student-athlete parents.
“Viewers can expect to get more information and entertainment from the hour-long podcast rather than the regular sports TV show,” Rubado said.
Rubado and Collison know that this will help The Mirror grow, but hope to see students also create their own work outside of the newspaper.