Over the years, WRCU has broadcast many of Colgate’s sporting events. The sports that were followed were typically football, hockey, and basketball, but coverage varied by how good the team was in a given year. In 1977, the football team was nationally ranked, and GM at the time, Al Yellon ‘78, recalls: “That would likely have been among our biggest listenership ever — only we had trouble with our phone line to Delaware and wound up missing about half the game.” At that time, WRCU devoted a section of its budget to fund students going to away-games to broadcast. Yellon recalled a trip to cover a Colgate-Penn basketball game at the Palestra in Philadelphia, “one of the most storied arenas in college sports.” Scott Morvillo ‘92, recalls “sports were taken seriously.” “In 1989 when the men’s hockey went to playoffs, we were there the whole time, for anyone who didn’t want to make the trip, we had WRCU and a ton of people were listening to the games.” In the 1973 WRCU also began broadcasting women’s athletics.
The process for these broadcasts in the 70s-80s included dialing into the station from the media booth at the arena. As Bill Schwartz ‘79 recalls, the team would typically be 4-5 people covering, stats, play by play, and the broadcast technology. The effort of these broadcasts was really important in providing Colgate and the community with access to sporting events. Games typically generated a lot of listeners for the station, and even funding in the 1970s, when the station was able to accept grants from local businesses to meet the costs of covering the games.
As time went on and technology changed, WRCU developed easier ways of broadcasting remotely, which did not require dialing-in. In the 1990’s this new technology-enabled broadcasting outside of the arena at other events. Moira Cook ‘96, recalls that while she was the General Manager, the station remotely broadcasted concerts for Homecoming and Spring Party Weekend in addition to the traditional sports broadcasts which were hockey at the time.
(Gabrielle Woleske ’18)(Based on Interviews with Al Yellon, Bill Schwartz, Moira Cook, May 2018)