ESPN Radio has been revolutionary in bringing sports talk radio to the forefront. One of the voices that many have gotten familiar with is Freddie Coleman. Recently, I got to catch up with Freddie and here is what we talked about!
MP: So, what’s it like to work for ESPN?
FC: I have been at ESPN for eight years and I kept waiting on that one bad day until one day, I just stopped thinking about it. Because a bad day here is still better than doing something that I’m not happy at all the time. I’m living out my dreams and doing what I love and that’s truly a blessing.
MP: Being that you work at ESPN, how do you balance your home life and your job?
FC: First, I’m lucky that I have an understanding wife, but she understands that when I’m away from the job, it’s family time. I don’t bring work home with me. When I’m at work, it’s work and when I’m at home, it’s home. I believe that you cannot bring work home with you and that you cannot let work define you.
MP: How did you first get interested in radio?
FC: Well, growing up as a kid in New York, I always loved radio. I listened to everything. But it was later when I went to college and hung around people at the college radio station, that’s when I made my decision that I wanted to make radio my career.
MP: Where did you grow up in New York?
FC: I was born in Brooklyn and raised in Queens, New York.
MP: Did you play sports growing up?
FC: I actually played football, tennis and basketball in high school at Long Island City High School. I also played college football at Division II Mansfield University as well. I currently still stay active by playing on ESPN’s softball team.
MP: What position did you play?
FC: I played wide receiver.
MP: Growing up, what sports figure inspired you the most?
FC: Dr. J (Julius Irving of the Philadelphia 76ers) inspired me the most. He is my favorite player of all-time.
MP: What about Michael Jordan?
FC: As a Knicks fan, I’m morally opposed to Michael Jordan. He torched my team too many times.
MP: Who were some of your biggest influences in radio and broadcasting?
FC: Marv Albert has always been one of my favorites because of his sarcasm, dead pan humor and the way he calls the game. I also was heavily influenced by Keith Jackson and Chris Schenkle when they called college football games. Another radio influence was music radio host Chuck Writer. He had a major influence on me in high school.
MP: Best interview that you’ve ever had?
FC: It’s really hard to pick out just one. To be honest, not one interview stands out above any of the others because I’ve had the chance to talk to so many people like Shaq, Cedric the Entertainer, John Calipari, Bernie Mac and the list goes on.
MP: Where all have you worked in radio?
FC: I have worked for a Top 40 station in Portland, Maine, a Top 40 station in Poughkeepsie, I’ve worked for a Soul Music station in New York City and I’ve also been a program director in Poughkeepsie, New York and worked in TV in the Hudson Valley, which is one to two hours north of New York City.
MP: Have you ever had an interest in doing more television?
FC: Not really. To me, it’s not as much fun as radio. Radio is not as political and television is something that is really not on my radar to be honest.
MP: What advice would you have for young people aspiring to getting into radio?
FC: I would say that you have to make sure to be prepared. You don’t have to know everything, but make sure you do your homework. Also, be 100% real when you’re there. The more truthful you are, the most you build your credibility.
MP: What is your ultimate goal in broadcasting?
FC: I’ve never had an ultimate goal. I always just want to make sure that I love what I do and do what I love.
MP: What are some charitable things that you are involved in?
FC: I get involved with Coaches vs Cancer in New York City. Coaches vs Cancer is a program where coaches help raise awareness for prostate cancer. I’m always on board for these events.
Freddie not only is a radio host, but someone with great experience that has put in time to make it to the level he’s at now. Many thanks to Freddie for the interview.