The Curley Center hosted a talk between two giants in basketball journalism Wednesday, Oct. 5, as Jim O’Connell of the Associated Press and Mike Breen of ESPN/ABC spoke on campus with students and community members.
The event was hosted by the John Curley Center for Sports Journalism and Malcolm Moran, director of the Center and Knight Chair in Sports Journalism and Society.
Moran set the tone for the evening early on when he screened clips from Breen’s NBA on ESPN commercials. Moran claimed that they showcased Breen’s acting talents, which lightened the mood and paved the way for the playful back-and-forth between Moran, Breen, and O’Connell that followed.
The talk, which drew mostly students, focused on tips and tactics for entering the sports journalism industry. But the casual conversation covered subjects as diverse as the Basketball Hall of Fame, good manners, the importance of handwritten notes, and the NBA lockout.
The most prevalent piece of advice – from both Breen and O’Connell – was to take advantage of every opportunity to make contacts in the business. So, after the final question was asked, about half of the 50 or so people in attendance patiently stood in line just to shake hands and exchange a few words with Breen or O’Connell. I guess they were paying attention.