The athletics marketing and events coordinator at St. Thomas University is going to be taking his enthusiasm to Toronto in July. Eric Moffatt will be announcing at the beach volleyball portion of the Pan American games.
“It’s announcing who’s serving, who gets a kill, who gets a block, anything that will help energize the crowd,” said Moffatt. He will also be in charge of entertaining the crowd during timeouts, announcing the players at the beginning of the game, and who wins at the end.
Moffatt has been doing announcing across several sports for the past 15 years, but he is best known for his volleyball announcing. Moffatt announced volleyball at UNB for 10 years, and has worked for Volleyball New Brunswick before becoming the marketing events coordinator at STU.
Four years ago, Moffatt was asked to announce at the Halifax Sand Jam event, which is the world junior beach volleyball championship. Ed Drakich, a former Olympian and one of the top technical delegates for the Pan Am games, wanted the same team that was at the Halifax Sand Jam to do the Pan Am games in Toronto.
“Our primary goal is going to be to pump up the crowds during the Canadian games,” said Moffatt, something he feels shouldn’t be a problem.
Moffatt enjoys making up fun nicknames for the players he is announcing. For example, Moffatt announced a game with Josh Binstock, who played in the London Olympics.
“He’s a chiropractor outside of his Olympic pursuits, so we called him Dr. Block,” said Moffatt. “Or, the clinic is open with Dr. Block.”
“When it comes down to it, if you can energize the players out on the sands, and they get into it, then that means the fans get into it, and it makes me more excited. It’s kind of like building snowmen, to use an opposite season. The snowman just continues to build, and it just gets so exciting,” said Moffatt. “It’s awesome. I love it.”
Moffatt will announce the games with three others from the Halifax Sand Jam team, include his roommate Rae Tretiak, who will be the DJ.
Though it is a volunteer position, Moffatt will have his trip to Toronto covered as well as accommodations. He will also be able to eat in the volunteer village, so the trip to Toronto will come with few expenses.
Moffatt is excited to be doing the beach volleyball event in particular, as it’s a sport he feels has really grown over the past few years.
“Beach volleyball has been a sellout event at the past three Olympics… and the venue keeps on building. They keep adding more seating capacity,” said Moffatt. “Now Toronto isn’t going to be as big. I estimate it will be about an 8,000 seat venue, but I could see that being sold out pretty quickly.”
Despite the big crowd, Moffatt isn’t nervous about addressing so many people. The way he looks at it, speaking to a crowd is like having a one way conversation with one crowd, as opposed to 8,000 people.
After the Pan American games, the next place Moffatt would like to announce is about as big as it gets: the Olympics.
“I wouldn’t mind being a phone call away from the 2024 Olympics,” said Moffatt.
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