Each week, three Lima Senior High School DECA students get behind the desk, run down the week’s scores and interview Spartan athletes.
Throw in a fun “we’re on the air now” intro clap, some comedy and a few props, and you have the new “Around the Spartan” weekly sportscast.
“We’re pretty high profile here and we knew we could make something special,” said senior Derek Snider, who holds the middle seat on the news desk.
Flanking Snider is basketball standout Xavier Simpson and football, basketball and track athlete Ruben Flowers III. Snider plays soccer, golf and tennis, but is even more known for his musical talents.
All three know their sports. All three are funny. And all three like to do their share of ribbing each other. It makes for great TV.
The show is produced each week in Lima Senior’s own studio. Helping to film and produce is Matthew Gordon, from the school’s senior interactive multimedia class. The name of the show is a take on ESPN’s “Around the Horn.”
The show, usually running about 10 minutes, is shown on the school’s closed-circuit television every Friday morning. The shows are also available on the district’s YouTube site, Lima Senior’s web site and through district social media.
After just two episodes, “Around the Spartan” is seeing a good response.
“A lot of people are telling us how much they enjoy the show,” Snider said. “They think it is hysterical but still informational.”
The students will use the project for competition this year, in hopes of getting to the state and international contests. Lima Senior has a history of high numbers of students advancing to state and internationals.
Flowers and Simpson both plan to major in sports broadcasting in college. Flowers has committed to play football at the University of Pittsburgh and Simpson recently committed to the University of Michigan basketball program. The two occasionally spat on the show about their future schools. Both agree though that “Around the Spartan” is great experience.
“This will prepare us for the next level,” Simpson said.
“It is a good starting point for us,” Flowers added.
Saying that each week is a learning experience, the students hope the show keeps getting better and better. The goal, Flowers said, is to do interview segments outside the studio and then incorporate into the show. They might use other DECA students to be their reporters out in the field.
Simpson hopes this year’s show will not end with the three, but continue well into future years with new students. For now, they focus on making each episode a little better.
“We want this to become something everyone wants to watch,” Simpson said. “We want them to wonder what we are going to do next week.”
Below are links to the first two broadcasts: