Today’s Media Monday takes us back to high school. Well, sort of. It’s from Jose Garcia, co-host of the azpreps365 radio show heard on 98.7 FM each Saturday from 9-11 a.m., and multimedia contributor for the azpreps365.com. It’s a great showcase for high school sports in Arizona.
I’ve had the opportunity to appear with Jose to talk about “Who is Gym? and following a touchdown at a high school football playoff game this past season, we had a brief in-person conversation while waiting for the ensuing kick-off. I was there in stripes officiating the game, he was there taking video and reporting on it.
Jose, time to share:
I am in charge of promoting the 267-member schools of the Arizona Interscholastic Association. We do so by posting stories, videos and producing game and tournament show broadcasts for azpreps365.com. I have a face for radio (Ha!), so I also get to stretch my journalism legs by co-hosting and co-producing our popular Saturday morning high school sports radio show. Plus, I also monitor our social media sites and get to work sidelines for our Fox Sports state championship broadcast.
I grew up in Southern California reading the L.A. Times and the now defunct Herald Examiner. I admired sports journalism giants such as Jim Murray but never thought I could possibly become a sports writer until I took my first journalism class in college. I was hooked! As fate would have it, my journalism career started at the L.A. Times as a high schools sports reporter. But my first full-time gig came with The Arizona Republic, where I worked at for 12 years before joining the AIA.
As an intern at The Republic, I wrote an investigative piece on illegal street car racing in Phoenix. A photographer, two detectives and I followed a group of street racers for a day, but by the end of the night they sensed we didn’t belong. We were chased out but with a good story. When I started working as a sports writer for The Republic, I followed troubled youth who served a couple of stints at juvenile detention centers. I followed the kid for about three years, and he always seemed to bump into former athletes working at the detention centers, including former Olympians, NBA and NFL players. The story won Arizona Sports Story of the Year in the early 2000s. While I was at The Republic I also worked on a story about Arizona State’s baseball program and had to interview former ASU great Barry Bonds. But when I approached Bonds before a Giants-Diamondbacks game, he gave me the well-known I-don’t-do-interview stare. The other memorable story I covered while at The Republic was an investigative story on steroid use in high schools. Currently, I am advocating for heart health care for high school athletes. Cardiac arrest is the leading cause of death in high school athletes, believe it or not.
I have an 8-year-old boy and a 4-year-old daughter who keep me on my feet. So trips to the park, dance and Tae Kwon Do practices keep me busy. Oh, when we have time, my wife and I get away to watch a movie or two. I’m a big movie buff. I can’t wait for Star Wars!
Besides being a cookie monster, I served three years in the U.S. Army. The adventures never seem to end! I love what I do, and it’s true what they say, I’ve never worked a day in my life since becoming a journalist.