This isn’t exactly sports media, but I wanted to share my Chicago Tribune profile of Brooks Boyer, the head of marketing for the White Sox.
You also can access the story via my Twitter feed at Sherman_Report.
Actually, Boyer is heavily involved with sports media with the White Sox TV and radio deals. With the Sox coming off their worst season in 43, the environment is challenging.
From the story:
Brooks Boyer’s business is baseball, but he goes back to his basketball days to describe his approach to the job.
The Chicago White Sox vice president and chief marketing officer preaches “wanting the ball in the fourth quarter.” It stems from the way he played the game as an all-state high school shooting guard from Concord, Mich., and as a two-year captain at Notre Dame.
Boyer reflects on a disappointing loss against his high school’s big rival to start his junior year. He was horrible, he said, scoring one point while going 0-for-14 from the floor.
“I couldn’t hit the ocean,” Boyer said.
Boyer vowed to his teammates that things would be different when the two teams played again. Sure enough, with his team trailing by one point with 15 seconds left, he canned a 3-point shot to pull out the victory.
“If I got the ball, there was no chance anyone else was going to take that shot,” Boyer said.
Boyer’s game is different now, but his philosophy is the same.
“Wanting the ball in the fourth quarter is about how are you going to (make an) impact, force yourself on the outcome of a game or a situation?” Boyer said. “Nobody wants to be on the bench in the fourth quarter. You want the ball. I’d rather lose with me taking responsibility for shooting the ball.”
Now, it seems as if Boyer, 42, is going into the fourth quarter with a 20-point deficit in his situation with the White Sox.
The flush of winning the World Series in 2005, spiking attendance to an all-time high of 2,957,414 in 2006, quickly evaporated with the Sox making only one postseason appearance since then. It bottomed out last year with the Sox losing 99 games, their worst showing since 1970. Fans responded by staying away from U.S. Cellular Field, with attendance plummeting to 1,768,413, the lowest since 2002.
While the Sox received some raves for adding young players during the offseason, fan apathy likely will be entrenched until positive results are seen on the field. Meanwhile, Boyer continues to hear constant comparisons with what occurs on the North Side, where the Chicago Cubs still draw a crowd to beloved Wrigley Field despite a string of terrible teams.
Yet, Boyer still wants the ball.
“I can’t control what happens between the lines,” Boyer said. “I can control the experience fans have when they come to the ballpark. Our job is to make winning and losing as moot an issue as possible.”