?Ladies and gentlemen, your University of Rochester Yellowjackets.?
Who are the voices that you hear at the basketball and women?s lacrosse games?
Who are the people you see running all over the place chasing down balls and run-ning game statistics down to the field or court?
Those people are a combination of the game management crew and the ?A-team,? which is a group of students who control the scoreboard, score-book and announcing.
The ?A-team?s? job is to make sure that athletic events go along without a glitch.
Most of the ball chasing and fieldwork is done by students who work for the game man-agement sector of the UR Ath-letic and Recreation Department.
The voices you hear and the people you see running up and down the bleachers are a bunch of students who are proud to call themselves the
The ?A-team? consists of juniors Chris Lewis, usually working the game clock, Chris Sisto, doing the shot clock for basketball and filling in at game clock for lacrosse, John McCauslin, announcing the
games and myself ? doing the dirty work of keeping the game books.
It is understandable that the athletes get most of the attention for the dedication they show on the floor, but the work that we do also takes a lot of dedication.
?Many teams follow a strict 48-hour drinking policy before games and we have a policy of our own. You must be sharp and at your best ? going out the night before is definitely encouraged,? McCauslin said.
Sometimes the games get a little slow, and if we are not totally focused, the ?A-team? can miss a play and make the referee stop play so the clock can be adjusted or the statistic book fixed.
The needed skill
When a game gets down to the wire and every second counts, it is very important that we use our skills to the best of our ability.
The team that is losing is usually all over the score table when it gets down to the waning seconds, and there is a stoppage of play or a change of possession, which requires a refreshed shot clock.
Since we have been been working together for a year, the ?A-team? usually handles these challenges with ease.
?If you see me during the game, I?ve always got my head up and eyes on the game,? Sisto said. ?I think the hardest part of the job is trying to finish all the sodas before the end of the game. When I get bored with the simplicity of the game, I try to improve my already high skill level by switching things up and using my left hand. That is why my shot clock violations to mistakes ratio is at an all-star level,? he said.
We got game
When the game is a total blowout or just boring, the focus of the ?A-team? changes towards a different matter ? the women.
Although some positions hold more authority than others, we all are on the look out for women.
?When the game doesn?t have much action, I?m basically out there for the ladies,? McCauslin said. ?If I don?t see them smiling, I?m not doing a good job anno-uncing.Doing a good job pays off later that night!?
After all, the announcer has the most power at an athletic event.If he really wanted to, he could cancel the game with one short breath.
Probably the lowest pos-ition of a scores table would be the scoreboard keeper.
Since he has the most but-tons to push, he is usually the first to screw up the flow of the game.
Sometimes he enters the wrong score, other times he never starts the clock.
But the ?A-team? has one of the best scoreboard keepers in the University Athletic Association ?according to most referees.
?My position for the team is one that can be screwed up easily and usually does not involve a lot of glamour.I have to be focused on the game and not on the women. That?s probably why I haven?t had a woman touch me in years,? Lewis said.
Generation to generation
One of the original mem-bers of the ?A-team? will be graduating this year, and his presence will be missed.
?I?ve learned everything I know from [senior] Lance Ramer,? said Lewis. ?We?re basically the same person, from body type, to position in football, to the same job at the table.?
Every once in a while we?ll be missing a member, but it?s due to a legitimate excuse.
?Sometimes I have trouble waking up for those 7:00 p.m. games, but my excuse skills are just as good as my game clock skills so I have nothing
to worry about,? Lewis said.
Next time you attend a lacrosse or basketball game, look up in the booth or down on the court and most likely you?ll see the ?A-team? in action.
Although the players are the ones who get the credit for a good game ? the ?A-team? likes to think that we are the ones who deserve some of the credit.