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FOX sports selects UA's campus rep.

KEVIN B. KLAUS/Arizona Daily Wildcat
Journalism junior Lindsay Waltman kicks back in the KAMP Student Radio studio in Park Student Union, 615 N. Park Ave. Waltman was named the UA's campus correspondent for Fox Sports Net Arizona's "Wildcat Insider" yesterday.
By April Lacey
Arizona Daily Wildcat
Friday, October 8, 2004
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After sifting through more than 50 taped auditions, Fox Sports Net Arizona named journalism junior Lindsey Waltman as the 2004-05 UA campus correspondent on its "Wildcat Insider" television program last night.

Waltman will represent the UA campus in a short weekly segment on FSN Arizona.

"Wildcat Insider" covers mostly "light-hearted" UA sports stories and Waltman's own short segment every Thursday at 6:30 p.m. and 10 p.m., said Brett Hansen, public relations director for FSN Arizona.

Waltman, a sports broadcaster for KAMP Student Radio, said she was surprised she was chosen.

"When I found out I won, I was extremely ecstatic," Waltman said. "I was a little nervous (when auditioning), but not as nervous as I thought I would be."

Waltman said she channeled her nervous energy into her performance.

Todd Walsh, the FSN pre-game host for the Diamondbacks and the Coyotes, and one of four judges at last week's on-campus auditions, said Fox Sports was looking for someone who could represent what it meant to be an average UA student.

Judging alongside Walsh were Sean Mooney, a reporter and producer for FSN, and FSN Operations Manager Dan Omahen.

Another judge, Ryan Kaner, sports director for KAMP Student Radio, said Waltman got the position because she exuded so much self-assurance.

"She was just beaming with confidence," said Kaner, who has worked with Waltman in the past at KAMP. "I knew from the second she finished that she nailed it. It was almost flawless."

The auditions, which took place at McKale Center last Friday, each lasted about 10 minutes, and students had to perform a brief sports report and mock interview on camera.

The sports report covered topics like UA school spirit at ASU football games and UA women's soccer team statistics.

For the mock interview students created questions to ask an actor portraying Antoine Cason, a freshman UA football player who won the Pacific 10 Conference Player of the Week after the Wildcats' season-opening win over Northern Arizona.

For the brief sports report, Waltman read a few lines about how much the UA women's soccer team had to run during its games.

"I tried not to memorize it word for word. But it did come out that way," Waltman said.

Waltman said her work at KAMP radio boosted her interest in sports.

"I have been broadcasting sports for KAMP radio. A lot of people from KAMP tried out. So I decided to give it a shot," Waltman said.

Although each of the judges gave input, the final decision rested in Mooney's hands, Kaner said.

Most contestants were journalism majors; however, a variety of majors including history, accounting and veterinary science, were represented, Hansen said.

"People have to have a lot of confidence to do this," Hansen said.

Karshannon Gene, a veterinary science freshman, said she tried out because her dream job is to be a Sports Center anchor for ESPN.

"I have been interested in sports since sixth grade," Gene said.

Gene works at McKale Center, and discovered the audition by accident when she was running an errand.

"I was on my way to the elevator and saw the signs pointing in (toward the audition). So I decided to try out," Gene said.

Jacob Pallastrini, a journalism junior, also said he entered the contest because he has dreamed of breaking into sports broadcasting.

"Since high school I've wanted to do some type of sports casting," Pallastrini said.

Pallastrini said when he began the audition the judges were nicer than he expected them to be.

"All the guys make you feel comfortable," Pallastrini said.

Hansen said the ratio of male to female contestants was about 4 to 1.

"Some people may have an issue with a woman being chosen because it is a male-dominated field," Waltman said, "but I think most people are okay with it."

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