Capturing Costas at Cronkite

By Andrew Gilstrap

Perhaps you don’t watch the MLB Network or NBC’s Sunday Night Football Coverage. If you don’t, then you’re probably not familiar with a certain sports anchor’s latest work. But certainly you recognize the name: Bob Costas. Surely you do. And I’ll bet you caught him at some point this summer anchoring the most recent Olympic Games in London.

To be honest, I haven’t seen a whole lot of Costas since NBC stopped airing NBA games. However, I was impressed to see my school, the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University, got the broadcast legend to visit the campus last week.

I went to the top floor of the Cronkite building last Monday evening to snap pictures of Costas’ visit to the Cronkite NewsWatch newsroom. And then the 23-time Emmy winner was back in the building Tuesday morning for a one hour question-and-answer session with Dr. Joseph Russomanno, a Cronkite school professor (who also happens to be my Media Law teacher this semester). Later on Tuesday, there was a special luncheon where Costas accepted the 2012 Walter Cronkite Award for Excellence in Journalism.

I was not able to attend the luncheon, but I used his other two appearances on campus to try dozens of different shots of him with my Canon camera. I even walked by him in the bathroom as he was either washing his hands or splashing his face right before he went ‘on stage’ for the Q-and-A session on Tuesday. I had a perfect chance to either pester him or introduce myself, but, knowing that he was expected in our First Amendment Forum, I smiled nervously and left him alone.

With all that I look forward to doing in sports, this is a guy to look up to (even though he’s not all that tall, as I found out when I was in his presence). I’m surprised how youthful this broadcast icon still looks. It was also refreshing to hear his commitment to objective, non-sensational journalism. Too bad he’s doesn’t do anything with basketball at the moment, because that’s where I’d see more of his work.

Take a look below at a slideshow of some of my captures (with minimal edits) of Costas’ trip to the Cronkite school.

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