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After Checking Varsity Football Off His List, Caden Shmigalsky Shares Announcer Booth with Bill Nevin at WVU vs. Kansas Game

By Julie Perine on October 11, 2018 via Connect-Bridgeport.com

Filling in for Gooch Holbert – field voice for the Indians – during this year’s homecoming football game was quite an honor for Bridgeport High School senior, Caden Shmigalsky.
 
Just a few weeks later he found himself in the announcer’s booth at the West Virginia University vs. Kansas game. That opportunity came about through Bill Nevin, assistant vice president of communications for the WVU Foundation. Nevin serves as voice of the WVU Marching Band, public address announcer for WVU football, men’s basketball and baseball, as well as the West Virginia Black Bears minor league baseball team. It was during the 2017-18 basketball season that Shmigalsky reached out to him.
 
“I told him I liked his work and that I was public address announcer for Bridgeport High School,” Shmigalsky said. “By then, the basketball season was coming to an end, so asked me to come to Morgantown to a Black Bear game.”
 
Shmigalsky and his dad made plans to attend a game – and then another.
 
“We actually went to a few games and sat right behind Bill and were able to talk with him,” he said. From there, he mentioned maybe getting me up for a football game and, of course, I was thrilled. He said he was going to try to get me a pass and that happened last Saturday for the Kansas game. I was extremely excited.”
 
He was even more excited when he got there.
 
“There wasn’t a dull moment,” he said. “It was really neat to see the pregame show. It was a little different with so many advertisements and announcements that had to be made.”
 
The Morgantown experiences took Shmigalsky’s knowledge of public address announcing to another level.
 
“In minor league baseball, as well as college basketball and football, there is a lot of advertising you have to read and you have to keep a consistent pace doing the rosters and starting lineup,” he said.
 
Nevin also gave Shmigalsky pointers on things like pronunciations and diction and how important it is to have a good spotter or spotters. He also some long-term advice.
 
“He told me to take every opportunity I could to do public address announcing – whether it's a freshman football or varsity basketball game – and to take every opportunity to watch other announcers, observing them,” Shmigalsky said. 
He was a freshman when he started working under Richard Bailey, announcing BHS varsity and JV basketball games. His sophomore year, he took over the as basketball announcer.
 
“That’s big as a sophomore. Being 16 years old and handed public address duties,” he said. “It was a lot, but I was honored to do it.”
 
The gig did give him some extra spending money, but that wasn’t the true value of the experience.
 
“I just love doing it. I would have done it whether I got paid or not,” he said.
 
As a junior, he announced all BHS basketball – freshman, as well as boys’ and girls’ JV and varsity games.
 
“I also assisted with soccer and baseball that year, as well,” he said.
 
This year, Shmigalsky added boys’ soccer to his list of public announcing duties and he splits time announcing girls’ soccer.
 
With each year, his confidence grew and his technique improved. Part of the reason for the latter is that he pays close attention to other announcers. One of his main inspirations is Nevin.
 
“I remember when I first heard him and I liked him because he’s a Mountaineer – and you can’t deny that – but also I felt like he and I approached things pretty similarly and he was someone I could really relate to,” Shmigalsky said.
 
Nevin has motivated him to stay on the path of public address announcing.
 
“Working with him was just fantastic,” Shmigalsky said. “I’m excited to see what the future holds.”
 
After graduating from BHS in May, he plans to attend Fairmont State University, majoring in business and minoring in either finance or communications.



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