KTVB sports anchor Justin Corr loves sports...but maybe not as much as he loves KTVB. The Eagle High product has made it big at the sports desk of Channel 7, rubbing elbows with Mark Johnson and making sweet, local sports music with David Augusto. Life is good, which may explain the effusive praise for his current employer. Seriously, though, we think every station could use a Justin Corr clone; his optimism, enthusiasm, and hope for the local sports scene is one-of-a-kind. Read on to find out more, and check out some of Corr's work at KTVB.com.
OBNUG: Tell us a little bit about your background. Where did you grow up? Where did you go to school?
Justin Corr: I was born in Lincoln, Nebraska. Lincoln was where I learned my love of college football. The community support there for the Huskers is nearly unmatched. After 11 years, my family moved up to Meridian. I went to Meridian Middle School, Centennial High, and Eagle High, and then graduated from Boise State in 2002.
We read on your profile that you have worked at KTVB a couple of different times. How did you get started at KTVB? What brought you back?
I started at KTVB as an associate producer and assignment desk assistant during my final semester at BSU. Through the years, I also worked as a producer and photographer. Late in 2004, I had an opportunity to chase my dream, and be a sports reporter/anchor at KMVT in Twin Falls. Of course, I jumped at the chance… but just six months later, I had an opportunity to come back home, and do sports at KTVB. I’ve been here ever since.
How much did KTVB change during the time that you were gone? Did you notice its market share grow? Was there a noticeable shift in philosophy or strategy?
Not much really changed in such a short time. The market share has been dominant for decades, and continues to be that way. Our general manager, Doug Armstrong, has always had a consistent and clear philosophy of serving the people of this community, and that certainly continues. It’s actually quite a source of pride to work at KTVB.
Online media has been growing bigger and bigger as a reliable, popular form of news and information. How does KTVB address the growing need for online information? Is blogging a realistic goal for the station? What would you personally like to see KTVB do?
I have to hand it to our webmaster, Don Day. He has always managed our websites in a very forward-thinking way (as far as being the first local site to have video, web-streaming, etc.) and made sure that the newsroom is always thinking about web content. I was initially hesitant to put stories or interviews on the web, thinking that people wouldn’t want to tune in to my sportscast if they got the whole thing online. But, obviously that was old-school thinking.
What is your opinion on blogging and its place among traditional media both locally and nationally?
The greatest aspect of the internet, is that it’s a free and open forum. Anyone can say whatever he or she wants, whenever they want. The problem is, there’s a lot of information out there that is unreliable, or just useless… and just because you’re saying something, doesn’t mean anyone will listen.
I think blogging is great, but just like all writing, not all blogs are created equal. Some are filled with unreliable, useless information, which nobody reads. Some are well thought-out, and interesting pieces of writing (ed's note: thank you). The more the traditional media embraces blogging, and allows its already talented communicators to ply their trade on the blogosphere, the better-off they’ll be. I try to blog weekly on HSGametime.com during the football season, and we’ll have blogs for the upcoming Olympics in Beijing.
The popularity of BSU football is obvious, yet there are still many other interesting stories and sports in the valley. How do you balance your coverage between the Broncos and everything else? Does a certain part of the local sports scene suffer?
The fact is we can never give an athlete all the coverage they deserve. No amount of features can pay someone off for all the early mornings, endless practices, pain, and sacrifice that go into being a successful athlete. So, I think in that respect, the sports scene suffers all the time. However, the fact that KTVB has a three-man sports department (and numerous websites) allows us to get more and better coverage of all sports throughout the year. But right now, the Broncos are the number-one story, and we have to give the people what they want.
We've heard about local TV sports crews suffering lately due to cuts in staffing and resources. Is this true at KTVB? Do you feel that coverage of local sports should be given equal attention to that of local news and weather?
I guess I accidentally already answered the first part of that one. Our staffing and resources are great.
As far as equal attention goes… Obviously, I give sports MOST of my attention. I know weather affects everyone, news is news, and sports is sometimes viewed as just a distraction. But that’s one of the reasons I love sports. It’s fun! It’s exciting! And regardless of what some fans think, it’s not life and death! However, it is real human drama, and some sports stories are also news stories (BSU winning Fiesta Bowl).
How do you think the local sports media does as a whole? Do you see things moving in any certain direction in the future and what kind of improvements can be made?
I think the local sports media does a great job, but I am biased.
As far as trends... more local coverage! As you know, there are tons of places to get Seahawks highlights and features but only a small handful where you can get Borah, Vallivue, Idaho City, and West-Central Little League coverage. The big national stories still need covering, because not everyone has cable or the internet...really. Besides that, KTVB tries to go local as much as we can.
What has been a highlight of yours covering the sports scene in the Treasure Valley?
Well, I wasn’t at the Fiesta Bowl. So surprisingly, it was a BSU men’s tennis match. The final singles match to decide the WAC Championship, third-set tiebreak, over a thousand fans crowded around one court, tense and quiet, until Thomas Schoeck wins the final point, and the place goes bananas! That was pretty cool. But really, any event where the fans are REALLY into it is fun to cover.
Who has been your favorite player or sports personality to interview or work with during your time in Boise? Do you have any good stories that you want to share?
I think people might be surprised (or maybe they wouldn’t) of how many truly good people there are in local sports from Marty Tadman to Bart Hendricks to Davey Hamilton to Bryan Gates to pretty much everybody. It’s just great working with and talking to people who love what they are doing. Most of the people I see on a daily basis fit that category. I realize that’s a bit of a cop-out, but there’s more coming.
Boise State football seems to be the hottest ticket in town nowadays. Do you see this continuing? Do you see this changing if the team loses more games than usual? Where do you see the whole Bronco Nation phenomenon going from here?
This is a football town, valley, and state. People here love high school, college, AF2, and the NFL. No matter how Boise State does, they’ll continue to be ONE OF the hottest tickets in town… but the hottest? They’re still riding the momentum of the Fiesta Bowl, and that will continue for a few years. But, while the people here love football, they also love a winner! And, if Boise State becomes mired in mediocrity (don’t see it happening), an emerging powerhouse like the Idaho Stampede could take over. But, for at least the next few years, the Broncos are the tops.
- If you could run a TV station, which one would you choose and why?
KTVB, this is my home, I’m not going anywhere.
- Favorite TV show?
KTVB News at Ten
- Favorite website?
- Favorite book?
I don’t think KTVB has written a book, so I’ll say Friday Night Lights (I read it, before the release of the movie, and the show… seen on KTVB)
- Favorite sport?
- Favorite team?
KTVB’s Media Football Team (1-1 all-time record, riding a 1-game win streak)
- Favorite BSU player of all-time?
Greg Sasser (had a few classes with him, smart, tough, small, but a gamer. Remember, he got the sack to upset Fresno State in 2001)
- Favorite current player?
Dallas Dobbs (Another guy who clearly just loves what he’s doing)
- Favorite fellow newscaster?
Here are those cop-outs I was talking about… I love working with everyone.
- David Augusto or Mark Johnson?
David is the better singer; Mark has the better golf game.
- Who is your choice for starting QB this year?
Vinny Perretta, they’ll switch to the Wishbone offense (hey, it worked for Oklahoma… in the 60’s)