By Jack Ankony, executive sports editor
Class of 1990 Prospect graduate Luke Stuckmeyer never wrote for The Prospector during his four years in high school. It wasn’t until his humanities class his senior year, taught by Teresa Buczinsky, that he produced his first piece of media.
Stuckmeyer walked through the halls of Prospect video taping what went on in the life of a high school student. He was admittedly not the best student – in the middle of his graduating class – and was looking for something he was passionate about.
Stuckmeyer had a cousin involved with producing Denver Broncos football games. This was when a lightbulb went off in his head.
“I was like ‘This great. I’m not that smart, this isn’t bad, I could talk sports,’” Stuckmeyer said. “But it ends up becoming much more detailed than that for sure.”
Stuckmeyer got into broadcasting during college when he attended Valparaiso University.
“My whole reasoning I got into broadcasting, I tell people is that I just wanted to be there when the Cubs won the World Series,” Stuckmeyer said. “So we got to be there when the Cubs won the World Series and that was one of my biggest goals.”
Stuckmeyer now works for Comcast Sportsnet (CSN) and covers professional sports in Chicago. He started working for CSN when it launched in 2004 and has more than 15 years of broadcast experience for various networks. Stuckmeyer has covered everything from the San Antonio Spurs championship, to the Kentucky Derby, and even spent time as a weatherman.
“Doing creative writing in high school, I never really considered that something that would be valuable to me,” Stuckmeyer said. “While geometry has no value to my job today, that creative writing class still does. When you’re writing a script and you have to think on your feet and come up with a script thirty seconds before you go on live TV, the process of those things still comes back.”
Stuckmeyer, along with CSN producer and 1995 Prospect graduate John Schippman, recently came back to Prospect to cover the Chicago Bears practice on Aug. 17. During their time back at Prospect, Stuckmeyer and Schippman shared how they keep up with the ever-changing journalism and media industry.
“When Twitter first started, we thought was just a cute thing for people to throw out their comments, but six, seven, eight months later people started to get verified and now that’s how news breaks,” Schippman said. “Six years ago we would have never been looking at our Twitter feeds looking for breaking stories, but now that’s how teams report their stories.”
Schippman and Stuckmeyer have also helped with the evolution of CSN’s show In The Loop, where they mix sports with entertainment to try to appeal to a younger audience. Schippman thinks many stations are switching to mediums like this because people are no longer intrigued by an hour long show of replays from games.
The emergence of Twitter and blogging websites such as Barstool Sports have stood out to Stuckmeyer as a major change in journalism because it gives many more people voices. These networks are able to give a perspective different from beat writers who may have access to games, locker rooms, or practices.
“I think it is giving the man a much bigger voice in the sports world,” Stuckmeyer said. “That part of it I think is great. I think the other part is just adjusting the way we cover things. Now we cover things much more immediately than we did before.”
Because of these changes, Schippman thinks being creative has become very important in sports media.
“You need to have personalities,” Schippman said. “You need to have fun with what you are doing. You need to make sure you stick out in a unique way in whatever platform you are using.”