Winona State University's Newspaper since 1919

The Winonan

Winona State University's Newspaper since 1919

The Winonan

Winona State University's Newspaper since 1919

The Winonan


What is your favorite building to study in?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

“That’s a touchdown!” the KQAL sports broadcasting department

Christian Sopkowiak/Winonan

Although Doug Westerman’s office is at the bottom of Phelps in a small alcove right next to two other offices, his love for radio and his students is anything but secluded.

“I like to see our students evolve and improve over time, and that’s not just on the sports side,” Westerman said. “The students who DJ, report the news, work on production; hearing them get better excites me.”

Westerman is the adviser of the student-led radio station KQAL at Winona State University. He has been the adviser for three years, but his experience with radio goes all the way back to his time at KFAN, the Minnesota sports radio. He helped hire Paul Allen and various other hosts at KFAN.

Story continues below advertisement

“I oversee the entire station, but it’s easy for me to gravitate to the sports side of things just based on my past experience,” Westerman said.

The sports broadcasting department of KQAL is currently led by Sports Director Christian Lawver, who is a senior and three-year student veteran of KQAL and a two year veteran of the sports broadcasting department.

He began his time at KQAL playing music, and last year he began doing play-by-play for soccer and basketball.

“I now am the Sports Director and handle all of the play-by-play commentary for the WSU athletics and other duties,” Lawver said.

The duties of the sports broadcasting department consist of preview sports shows, professional sports rundown shows and play-by-play.

There are usually around 12 to 15 members in the sports broadcasting department, ranging from new broadcasters to veterans.

“And we always have room for more. The four primary duties are Dateline Winona, our Warrior Review and Preview shows and play by play,” Westerman said. “We average about 100 live sports events each school year, depending on the weather.”

The sports broadcasting department will do a radio broadcast at almost all of the sports games, and they will provide instant reaction to each of the games.

“We broadcast on Monday and Thursday nights for the Sports Rundown. Also, Monday through Friday at noon and 6 p.m. for Dateline Winona,” Lawver said. “Finally, we broadcast the day of WSU sporting events and provide play-by-play coverage of those events on the station.”

Of course, sports broadcasting involves more than just the radio. It also involves the evolution of individuals and the friendships and connections that are created.

“My favorite part is being able to work with the intelligent and passionate people in the KQAL department.,” Lawver said. “It makes my day more exciting and enjoyable when I get to share unique experiences with the other KQAL directors and work with them.”

While Lawver enjoys getting to know the other directors and broadcasters, Westerman loves seeing each and every single one of those students grow. He enjoys seeing them mature and evolve into capable broadcasters and people.

Lawver believes that the purpose of the sports broadcasting department is to create an enjoyable listening experience for their listeners.

“We want to make it fun for the listeners and encourage them to communicate with us, whether it’s asking questions or bringing up topics for our Sports Rundown shows. We want the listeners to know that what we do is for them, and we aim to make them happy.”

Contact Christian at [email protected]

More to Discover