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Blair to take over GSU broadcasts

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POSTED: July 5, 2011 10:04 a.m.

Five years ago, Chris Blair attained his lifelong dream of becoming a play-by-play voice.
Blair became the voice of the Georgia Southern Eagles in 2006 and has called GSU football and men’s basketball since.
As of Friday, Blair became a part of the university’s new media initiative, and as the director of broadcasting for GSU, will oversee all aspects of radio broadcasts from within the athletic department.
“This opportunity was one that allowed me to be where I’ve always wanted to be,” said Blair Friday during his first day on the job, “to be around the coaches, to be around the players and get to know them a little bit more because you get to interact with them every day – things you can’t really do if you’re not inside the department.”
Blair joins Rose Carter on the university’s media staff. Carter, the former director of media relations, will manage the social networking and video aspects of the GSU athletic department’s media branch.
“By creating a department of new media,” said GSU director of athletics Sam Baker, “Rose Carter will use her expertise with those platforms to meet the ever-growing need for our entire department to connect to our students and fans.”
Blair hopes two other familiar faces will join him on the radio broadcasts. Ryan Chambers, the football sideline reporter and play-by-play voice of the baseball team, and Terry Harvin, the football color analyst, are expected to retain their roles on the radio.
“What we’ve done the last five years, I’m very proud of it, and they’re a big part of it,” Blair said about Chambers and Harvin. “Moving forward from this point on, I’m the director of broadcasting, and I’m one guy. You’ve got to have a team.”
Blair hopes having full control of GSU broadcasting will help the product continue to grow.
“We constantly evaluate ourselves,” he said. “We always have, and I was told a long time ago by many, many people in this business that that’s what you need to do. You can’t ever get to the point where you think, ‘I’ve done my best, and I don’t need to improve.’
 “If you ever get stuck doing what you did five years ago or 10 years ago, somebody’s going to come along with a better way of doing it, and you’ll be out of a job. In my business, technology has changed so rapidly, so if you don’t constantly try to improve, you’re going to become obsolete.”
Georgia Southern inherited all aspects of the GSU radio network from Georgia Eagle Media — the company contracted to produce the broadcasts for the past five years — after the contract with the company was canceled Thursday due to lack of payment of portions of revenue owed.
 Blair began work building the 2011-12 network on Friday.
 “Everybody’s anticipating the start of football because we’ve missed it so much and we had such a great year last year,” he said. “But believe it or not we have some time and thank goodness for that, because there’s still a lot to do.”
Details of the 2011-12 network of affiliates are expected to be released by mid-July.
The Eagles football season kicks off Sept. 3 at Samford.

Matt Yogus is sports editor of the Statesboro Herald. He can be reached at 912-489-9408.

 

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