If you’re like me, you spent your entire childhood on the court, running the diamond, sprinting the field or in between the nets. The harsh reality is that a pure desire to succeed can take you only so far in the sports world, and you probably figured that out around the age of 16, just like I did.
If you’re not naturally talented, or athletically gifted, the consensus is that your chance of spending your life in professional sports is just not realistic. To the blind eye, that generalization is correct.
However, what most don’t realize is that there are careers all over the sidelines, and all around the arena that allow you to eat, breathe and bleed sports—metaphorically, of course.
Glenn Capeloto had this idea, and has been fortunate enough through hard work to report college basketball play by play, record stats for Fox Sports and ESPN and, for 37 years, sandwiched in between these demanding pursuits, has been working as a sports statistician.
Most recently, Capeloto has written and self published a book on how to get yourself into the game and get paid for it, without even playing.
“People I knew kept asking me: ‘How do you get to do what you do? How would I get started? Where? Can you get me into the game, too?’ I started writing down notes for a relative who had (non-athletic) sports aspirations.
“Soon, I had five pages of notes, and from that point forward I devoted every spare minute I had to writing this book,” Capeloto said.
Getting into the game is actually a lot easier than most think, insists Capeloto. “There are dozens of game-day operations that need able people to fill the position.”
“Maybe you’ll be a peanut vendor in the stadium. On game-day alone, the Dallas Cowboys employ approximately 6,000 people.”
The book covers almost every way imaginable to get into the stadium, some of which take years of experience in broadcasting, college courses and writing, while others take much less. Capeloto’s family lives in west Chandler, and his two sons follow the same aspirations.
His older son,Chad, is graduating this semester from Arizona State University with a journalism degree, and has been working for ASU doing sports stats while at the college. His younger son, Ryan, goes to Kyrene Middle School and plays basketball, soccer and football, but most recently finished his soccer season with the Scorpions.
“Chad’s interest was obvious from the day he taught himself to read so he could read the box scores. Ryan really gets it when it comes to knowing where to be and what a situation is on the playing field. He’s very smart and determined when he plays.
“I can see him coaching someday. Academically, all my kids, including my daughter Amy have been A students. You can’t ask for more.”
“In general, ‘You’re In the Front Row—How To Kick Off Your Career In Sports, Even if You’re Not a Star Athlete’ is for all those who want to work in sports but are not athletically gifted. There are dozens of occupations, from sports writing to blogging, media relations to broadcasting, sports medicine and refereeing, advertising and marketing,” he said.
Not lacking star power, the book features interviews with Jerry Colangelo, Lon Babby and Rick Welts from the Phoenix Suns as well as ESPN’s Pedro Gomez, KTAR’s Ron Wolfley, and many more local and national sports experts.
Whether you’re a sports fanatic yourself, and you’re desperate to continue your childhood aspirations of working in the sports world, or you know someone who lives breathes and bleeds sports, this book is a great insight to the endless amount of opportunity that surrounds the industry.
Before you know it, you might not be as far from your aspirations as you might think. You can read an excerpt, as well as purchase the book online, at www.yourcareerinsports.com.