Tye Berger is a K-State graduate who is now a lawyer and also runs bringonthecats.com. Tye sat down for an interview to discuss what he does for a living and to give advice to people who want a career in sports journalism.
Where are you from?
I am from Aurora, Neb. Aurora is a town of 4,000 people and is around 70 miles away from Lincoln.
Tell me a little about your family life?
I have one younger sister. I am married, but do not have any kids right now.
Why did you choose K-State?
The big thing for me was the academics. I was interested in the architecture program. Iowa State was really the only school I looked at to go to as they both have great architecture programs. The reason why I chose K-State is because even though Manhattan is not a tropical paradise, it is way better than Ames, Iowa.
When did you realize what you wanted to do?
It was kind of evolutionary progress. I went to K-State and wanted to be an architect and design golf courses. However, six weeks into that, I realized that I wanted to do something involved with journalism. I loved journalism, but then law started to appeal to me. It was not where I wanted to give up journalism, but I wanted to broaden my horizon, so I started to take some law classes at K-State. After K-State, I went to law school and continued to follow K-State sports.
How did the site come together?
It happened when I was in law school in Houston. There are all kinds of ways that you can follow the sports, but I felt a little disconnected from K-State sports. I was so far from K-State and I was unable to fully feel like I knew what was going on, so I wanted to start my own sports site. I had read many blogs and thought it would be fun to start my own. The guy who runs orangebloods.com then recognized me and he gave me the opportunity to run the K-State blog.
How do you balance between being a lawyer, running the site and seeing your wife?
I was spoiled as a law student because I had a lot more time to do both school and write articles. You go to school for an hour or an hour and a half, come home, eat lunch and then go right back to another class. After that class, it is only around 2:30, so you have plenty of time to go write a bunch of articles. It is tougher now because I have an 8 to 5 job, so it makes it more difficult to keep up the with the website. It also would not be 100 percent professional of me to being working on the website while I am here at my office. At the end of the day, I enjoy doing it so that is what keeps me doing it. I enjoy putting out topics and seeing the reaction that I get from fans and just seeing other people talk about their opinions. It is hard, though, as my wife likes to have time with me, but I love everything going on in my life, so I cannot complain.
What would you say to people who have a dream of being a sports journalist?
My advice would be do what you can to get published. Do what you can to get your work out there. There was a big controversy last year with Rick Reilly when he was talking to the Colorado University graduating class in journalism and he told the students to never give away your writing for free. He lost a lot of respect by people because of this statement. The way the economy is now, you have to be willing to go different ways at getting your stories out. The great and bad thing about this is the Internet. It is a good thing if you are a good writer, people will start to notice you. All you have to do is look at Bill Connelly. Connelly is an absolute prolific writer. He was doing all of this was when he had a day job. He got hired on full-time and is now able to knock out a lot of articles a day. There are many stories like his and if you have to talent and the dedication, then you have a chance to do whatever you want.