Nick Avila resume

8 May

Nick Avila                                                                   Phone: (916) 956-3614

Nfavila91@gmail.com                                                                                          

Objective:

To better myself, as well as my writing with more Journalism experience

 

Education:

Sacramento City College – (In progress) AA Journalism, AA Communications

Journalism and Communication Course Work:

Style for Media Writers, Intro to Communications, College Newspaper Production (in progress)

 

EXPERIENCE

Sports Editor – Spring 2013

Sacramento City College Express – Sacramento, CA

  • Create stories for staff writers to write
  • Write my own stories, including objective and subjective
  • Interview sources, coaches, players, etc.
  • Edit stories that are returned to me
  • Help the writers to understand important pieces of the stories

Staff Writer – Fall 2012

Sacramento City College Express – Sacramento, CA

  • Research stories assigned by editors
  • Write stories assigned by editors
  • Interview sources for stories
  • Follow AP guidelines when writing stories
  • Create story ideas for online edition of newspaper
  • Schedule interviews
  • Hunt down subjects if necessary

Computer skills

Knowledge of Mac, PC and Microsoft to an extent

Avidly uses social networks such as Facebook and Twitter, always updating people on sports stories as well as voicing my personal opinions

Sports Madness

8 May

Painted faces, entirely paintedbodies, huge head cutouts, and raucous crowds—these all describe a National Colle­giate Athletic Association basketball game.

Not many sporting events can draw a crowd like an NCAA game. It’s basically like the Seattle Seahawks fans at Centu­ryLink Stadium, who are known as the 12th man, and the fans at Arco Arena (now known as Sleep Train Arena) when the Kings were in their heyday, mixed with large amounts of alcohol.

With all the young fans in Califor­nia rooting for teams hundreds or even thousands of miles away, it may be hard to believe that City College’s sports teams (or most community college sports pro­grams) don’t have a very large following.

Although community college teams aren’t on a national level, there are still plen­ty of students, as well as former students, who one would think might want to come out and show support for their school.

Most sports fans believe that there’s nothing quite like NCAA basketball. The passion and camaraderie among this group is unrivaled. Many college players never go on to play in the pros, so they’re putting in nothing but effort because they’re playing for the love of the game, rather than a paycheck.

With the NBA instituting its rule that players must play a year of college basketball after high school (although some play­ers, like Brandon Jennings, guard for Milwau­kee Bucks, who went to play overseas, have found ways to get around the college requirement), it is the fans’ first chance to get a look at the phenomenal skills of these future all-stars.

But even with that incentive, many people don’t watch college basketball un­til it comes to what is known as “March Madness,” when basketball fans can pull up a seat and watch the 68 college teams involved compete in a tournament on their televisions, or nowadays on their laptops, tablets or smart phones. It’s an all-day event, with games running on multiple channels for the first round of the tournament.

Some City College student-athletes feel that the college could get the word out better about upcoming games. These students not only have to prepare for their games but also have to campaign for their fellow students’ support during the days leading up to the game.

Many of these same students who fail to support their own school’s sports programs are glued to their TV sets every Sunday during football season or rooting for their favorite university team dur­ing March Madness. So what is the real reason for the lack of support for commu­nity college student-athletes?

It is understandable that during a school semester students are mainly focused on classes and homework. Some students also have jobs, family and children.

With these activities, it seems that many students don’t have the time to attend games. It’s obvious that since City Col­lege’s games aren’t normally shown on television, the only way to watch a game or match is to attend, and that conflicts with people’s schedules.

Instead of watching your favorite shows on TV or sitting in front of your computer on a social network, refresh­ing every 10 seconds, why not go out and root for your college athletes?

Obviously, it’s not a perfect example, but Phil Horn, vice president of ticket service and sales of the Sacramento Kings, has a chart dating from the current 2012-2013 season back to the 2009-2010 season showing that the Kings’ win record improves when the crowd is bigger.

The Kings’ winning percentage is .400 percent when they have 14,000 fans in attendance and around .650 percent with over 17,000 fans.

March Madness in 2012 had over 8 million viewers per game, according to Nielson Fast Nationals. The number of fans at City College’s sporting events is comparable to the age of a City College student’s grandparent.

The players, who wear uniforms, rep­resent all City College students. They’re working to make sure their career doesn’t end at this level, but their hard work is rarely seen or cheered on. So the next time you’re bored or can’t come up with a fun place to take your date, go root for your fellow classmates. They’ll appreciate it.

Beating the curve

8 May

Sporting a modest build, at 5’10”, 200 pounds, 19 year-old Jerrod Bravo doesn’t stand out at first glance, but once the baseball game starts, it may seem that he’s ahead of the pack.

In fact, Bravo’s leading the Panthers in many of their batting statistical categories, including: slugging and on base percentage, runs-scored, hits, extra-base hits, and total bases. He also leads the team,and is seventh in the state, in batting average.

Bravo is also tied for first in stolen bases and ranks third on the team in runs batted in. So far this season he’s also only been held hitless in three games and has had multi-hit games in seven of the team’s first 15 games.

Interim Head Coach Derek Sullivan, who’s led the Panthers to a 7-8 record, says so far Bravo has done what he’s expected from him.

“[Bravo] works really hard. He’s very smart on the baseball field. As a hitter he’s selective,” says Sullivan. “He’s opportunistic, he’s smart, he works hard and he plays hard.”

Bravo, who began playing baseball at age eight, which was around the time he moved to El Dorado Hills from San Jose, recalls being signed up for the sport, without much consent, by current teammate, Marc Fackrell’s father, who was the coach of his little league team.

“His dad signed me up and I didn’t really feel like playing but I ended up liking it,” says Bravo. “After a while, I started liking it and just kept playing. I just stuck with it.”

Bravo, undeclared major, has played multiple positions this season, including catcher, but he says his most comfortable position is third base. He attended Ponderosa High School in Shingle Springs,
California.

Bravo says he enjoys the game and that it’s almost indescribable to explain his bond to the sport.
“I love playing and competing,”says Bravo. “I just fell in love with it.”

This season, he adds, Bravo says he feels his team is still coming together and they’ll start winning more games.
“I feel like we’re solid.We’re playing hard and things will fall our way,” says Bravo. “Right now we’ve been playing good teams so it’s tough to look at our record and say we’re doing that good.”

Teammate Dan Sayles, 21, communications major, says he thinks that Bravo is a good fit for the team.
“He’s a great teammate. [He’s] there to pick you up. He always has a positive attitude,” says Sayles. “He always [has] a smile on his face.”

When he’s watching Major League Baseball, Bravo is a Boston Red Sox fan and says his older brother, Travis, was the one who got him into the team. In his free time, he also tries to hang out with friends and family, but says during the season it’s hard to make time. During the last off-season he also played another sport for fun.

“I played some slow-pitch softball,” said Bravo. “[It] was a good time. No worries, stress free.”

With the baseball season not even halfway done, Bravo says he isn’t trying to look too far ahead and is just looking forward to the rest of his team’s games, although he says he is definitely aiming to
keep playing, with no preference as to where, as long as he can continue.

“[I’m] just kind of riding this for as long as I can go,”says Bravo. “Hopefully it takes me somewhere [and] I can keep going to school.”

Now or never

8 May

Most students enjoyed a winter break after the fall semester, but for the members of the City College Panthers’ basketball teams, there wasn’t much time to relax because both the men’s and women’s seasons were already under way.

The City College Panthers women’s team, led by Coach Devin Engebretsen, started out the 2012 season with losses in all of its first six contests.

After the losses, however, the team won four of its next five games, including two with Lassen College. The team’s aver­age margin of win during these games was more than 12 points. This strong pace, however, didn’t continue as it went into league play.

Next, the Panthers went 0-8 in league games, bringing their overall re­cord to 4-15. Although the team’s record shows a lopsided win-to-loss margin, 19-year-old criminal justice major Jacquelyn Conner-Hankins said she believes they have shown improvement.

“We have matured a lot as a team and have grown to play with one another,” said Conner-Hankins. “One step at a time is how we take it, and eventually it will fall through for us, and we will be the team we know we can be.”

So far this season, the team has struggled to put up points as well as maintain control of the ball, while scoring the least with 47.6 points per game and committing the most turnovers with 28.4 per game, more than any other team in the Big 8 conference, according to statis­tics on the California Community College Athletic Association’s website.

Samantha Gonzalez leads the team in points, averaging 7.9 per game.

Meanwhile, the men’s team, under coach Andrew Jones, has had trouble keeping its record above .500. The team started the year 2-1 before losing four of its next five games.

The Panthers went on a two-game winning streak to bring its record to 5-5 heading into its Big 8 league schedule. Since then it has gone 2-6 while falling into last place in the conference, with a record of 7-11.

Getting the victories has been tough for the team, some players said, but the team has maintained the belief that it has potential on the floor.

“We’re sort of struggling right now, but we still continue to try and get better every day,” said D.J. McGee, 22, social science major.

Ryan Mastella and Patrick Lowman have been the scoring leaders of the team thus far, averaging 16.7 and 14.8 per game, respectively according to the CCCAA Men’s Basketball website. Mas­tella and Lowman are fourth and tenth in that category in the Big 8, respectively. Lowman also leads the Panthers in re­bounding, while pulling down almost six rebounds per contest.

Mastella, 19, undecided major, said he believes the team hasn’t been able to get off to a strong start in games and that could be a key issue.

“We have been inconsistent and let teams get out to big leads on us early, which is hard to come back from,” said Mastella. “We are just in the process of putting all the pieces together.”

Settling in for the long run

8 May

Eighty-four years after it was built, Hughes Stadium received a boost this past year with numerous changes made to the historic structure.

After Bond Measure M passed in 2008, the school spent $13 million on new additions and repairs.

With the new features, school admin­istrators reopened the doors to campus teams as well as high school football programs, such as those run by C. K. McClatchy High School and Christian Brothers High School.

“The high schools came back right away and played their home football games here. We anticipate that will continue,” said Mitch Campbell, City Col­lege’s athletic director and dean.

After the renovation, City College administrators bid on the California Interscholastic Federation State High School Football bowls. City College wasn’t awarded the bid, but Campbell said the process had a positive out­come, nonetheless.

“We got tremendous reviews and accolades from the CIF people that made the site visits, so I hope we will be in the mix for those games in the future,” said Campbell.

Previously, the United Soccer League Pro Division had pledged to bring a team to Sacramento by 2014. Although the league has decided against that move for now, school officials say they still believe it may be a possibility.

“We are still talking to the profes­sional soccer team about them potentially using Hughes, and we’re ready for oth­ers who think this will be a good fit for them,” said Campbell.

Warren Smith, founder of Sacra­mento Professional Soccer, has entered into an “Exclusive Right to Negotiate” agreement with Sacramento City College about professional soccer matches held at Hughes Stadium, according to an online press release from the company.

The stadium’s football field also underwent a lot of change, with the inclusion of FieldTurf. This artificial turf is drastically different than the previ­ous field. When it rained in the past, for example, the football team, played on a mud-filled field, but that is no longer an issue, Campbell said.

Other changes include an all-weather track and a new field area for events such as high jump and shot put.

Ronnie Floyd, 19-year-old sprinter on the Panthers track and field team, said he’s thrilled that the team can participate in meets in its home stadium in front of its own fans.

“[I’m] very excited to have the track meets at home. [There’s] nothing like be­ing able to perform in front of your home crowd,” said Floyd, a social science major. “I love having the track back. It provides a different energy from last year.”

The stadium, likely, will stay packed with the return of high school football games, track and field meets, but college officials said the crowded schedule is a benefit.

“It’s been fantastic. I can’t say enough good things about it,” said Campbell.

Off to a fast start

8 May

The City College men’s and women’s track and field teams are hoping to build on past successes for their 2013 season. In 2012 the teams each boasted All American athletes in multiple events. The men’s team had ten, including two state champions. The women’s side had six of its own, including one state champion.

Currently, the women’s softball team is off to a strong start, going 9-1 so far, after a rebuilding season in 2012 with an end-of-the-season record of 11-26-1. The Panthers team is ranked fifth in Northern California and seventh in latest 2013 California Community College Fast Pitch Coaches Association State and Regional polls. The team jumped from an unranked position in the previous state and regional poll voting.

“We still have some work to do,” said softball coach Tim Kiernan. “Just because you win [it doesn’t] mean there are not things you can get better on.”

Meanwhile, the swim team will host the Panther Invite at Hoos Pool located at City College on March 1.

“We will not be the doormat in conference this year,” said swimming coach Steve Hanson. “We’re [going to] have a lot of good swimmers place in the top eight in our conference.”

On the baseball field, the men’s team has started with a 4-7 record that had them split wins and losses with Fresno City College, Chabot College, and Butte College. They were also swept in their most recent series in Southern California against Riverside College. Starting pitcher, Dan Sayles, holds a 2-2 record for the Panthers, with his losses coming against Fresno City and Riverside.

“Guys are playing hard. We just needed another couple breaks to go our way to get those wins,” says Coach Derek Sullivan.

On the courts, the tennis team hosted a match against Shasta College so far in their 2013 season. The men’s team tied 3-3, while the women’s team was defeated.

Yo Knows.

5 Mar

When the A’s signed Yoenis Cespedes before the 2012 season, it totally hit me, and I’m sure most of the A’s fan base as a shock. I remember when it happened I let my friends and family know right away. Obviously, with Yoenis coming from overseas I was asked plenty of questions. I hadn’t seen him play when he was with the Cuban national team; all I had was a Youtube video, yes a Youtube video. But that was all I needed.
I saw a big bodied player, with speed and agility like a running back. Then I saw the swing. Lord, it reminded me of the guy from Moneyball. All I could say to people was “the ball explodes off his bat”.
Aside from utter shock, it was a relief that we had made a move that got Oakland some attention. We had just cashed out a 4yr/$36mil contract to this guy. (That being our equivalent to any major $100mil+ signing of the past for bigger teams. So I watched him play with the A’s. And he made things look so easy. He was so quick with his reactions in the field and while batting his hands looked like a rubber band had snapped them forward.
A sensation like this hadn’t touched Oakland since… Bo Jackson. No I am not saying Yo is close to what Bo was, but they do have similarities.
I watched Bo Jackson highlights as a kid and was amazed that a man of his size could do the things he did. He was a freak of nature. If only he had been drafted by the A’s and played with them AND my Raiders. I can dream, right? But after watching the documentary about Bo on ESPN, I realized, Yoenis, comparable in size, speed, and athleticism, still needs a bunch of stories to create this own legend, like the mythical one Bo Jackson stilll has to this day.
And 2012 is when the legend started. I saw Yoenis make a catch in the outfield that resembled Bo, and Harold Reynolds even brought it up on MLB’s Top 100 Right Now show. Then, Yoenis stole a base, which isn’t spectacular, but the way he did it was. He was standing straight up, not in any sort of athletic position, but he turned his hip and stole 3rd with the throw not having a chance. I saw Yoenis hit a home run to deep left center that when it happened, I didn’t say anything but “Wow”. Lastly, this offseason when I heard the story of Cespedes hitting a homerun with a donut on his bat, I knew.
This guy is leaving his legacy with every at bat and we are all watching a legend in the making. Now, we just need him to throw on some shoulder pads- oh and dunk a stick.

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