Whenever you cannot make a sporting event in person at MSU Soccer Park, Sprague Field or Panzer Athletic Center, and you listen in to the live stream on the Red Hawk Sports Network (RHSN) YouTube page or the iHeartRadio for 90.3 WMSC Upper Montclair, you usually hear one, empathetic and iconic voice covering the action.
Currently a producer for RHSN, the sports director for the radio station and a broadcaster for the New Jersey Jackals and the American 7s Football League, it’s hard to miss senior Jack Barteck on a sports broadcast — or even outside of the Student Center, where his face hangs from a banner.
But, Barteck says the reason why he has been so successful is not solely because of what he does, but because of the bonds he builds with people as well.
“I think the relationships I have been able to form are what I will take with me the most,” Barteck said. “I have been able to meet and work with some of the best people, and while it is sad to leave, I know I will stay in touch with many of these people for the rest of my life.”
Jon Kociban, a senior heavily involved in sports media at Montclair State, has helped bring up RHSN alongside Barteck. The platform has come a long way, and Kociban credits Barteck for this, referencing his strong work ethic and the way he challenges others.
“From day one, his drive to provide quality coverage of Montclair State sports has only gotten more ambitious, and in turn has helped us grow as well,” Kociban said. “As a producer on ‘Inside the Nest,’ he’s always pushing students to take risks and to be more creative.”
Speaking of “Inside the Nest,” a weekly show ran by RHSN, Barteck is usually in front of the camera, whether talking to basketball players and coaches about what they’re looking forward to in the upcoming season or acting in funny skits to open up an episode of the show.
In the first episode this semester, Barteck was seen in the skit watching “Family Feud,” with an open laptop and a framed photo of head women’s basketball coach Karin Harvey to the right of the laptop. Harvey is grateful for the coverage her team and all the other Red Hawks get and speaks on how Barteck differs from other sports media students.
“I think [Barteck] and I kind of clicked right away,” Harvey said. “I really appreciate his interview style; it’s more of a conversation, and he really does his homework. He knows the right questions to ask, he’s super easy to talk to and he makes our team feel like we are big time.”
Barteck is also going to be a part of a show running on IMDb TV, a free streaming service owned by Amazon called “The College Tour,” where viewers can get an in-depth look at different colleges across the country. Barteck will be one of the many students sharing their stories for a mass streaming audience and is grateful for the opportunity.
“I say it all the time: coming to Montclair State is the best decision I have ever made in my life,” Barteck said. “It has given me opportunities I could have only dreamed of and has set me up for the next step in my life. So, any way [that] I can help try and pay it forward — I love doing that.”
Another big-time face of the sports media program here at Montclair State is Stacy Gitlin, professor of the RHSN class. She is also the one who orchestrates everything that goes into making “Inside the Nest.” Gitlin knew Barteck would be a great fit for the network, and he has become an improved broadcaster when it comes to his coverage.
“The biggest progression he’s made is seeing the bigger picture,” Gitlin said. “At the start, he was a fan talking about sports. It’s tough to remove yourself and remember you’re there to report on a team, not be a part of it. He often wanted to be liked by the teams, but he knows now you can be both liked and respected for asking the questions that need to be asked.”
With his time at Montclair State coming to a close, Barteck will be looking to make as much of an impact as he can, no matter where he is headed. With a new class coming in next year and students still here for another year or two to help out, Barteck leaves them with a wise piece of advice:
“My best advice is to get involved as early and as often as possible,” Barteck said. “You can’t be afraid to fail. It is the only way to grow. So, put yourself out there and push yourself to be your best. Most importantly, be curious, be kind and work hard.”