Behind the Scenes with Sean Frazier



July 16, 2013

On Tuesday, July 16, went behind the scenes with new Associate Vice-President and Director of Athletics Sean Frazier as he was introduced to the media, to the Northern Illinois community and to donors and alumni in Chicago at a pair of press conferences. Frazier's day also included live radio and television interviews, a dinner with donors and university guests and a constant stream of phone calls and text messages. NIU Media Services photographer Scott Walstrom accompanied Frazier all day as NIU Faculty Athletics Representative Matt Streb and NIU Associate Athletic Director for Communication Donna Turner shepherded him from event to event. Enjoy Walstrom's photographic look at the Huskies' new athletic director in action.

10:20 a.m.- At the start of a busy day, the new "first family" of Huskie Athletics is whisked off to the Yordon Center and press conference number one by Associate Athletic Director Carl Armato.

10:30 a.m. - Prior to the press conference, Sean Frazier meets NIU defensive coordinator Jay Niemann and finds a familiar face in former Wisconsin football staffer Kevin Kane, now the Huskies' linebackers coach and special teams coordinator.

10:50 a.m. - A crowd of community supporters, university staff and administrators and athletic staff were in attendance to welcome Sean Frazier and his family to NIU.

11:10 a.m. - Frazier briefly donned the Huskie hat presented to him by President Baker before taking the mic to address the crowd and assembled media.

11:15 a.m. - Chocolate milk and stuffed huskies in hand, the Frazier kids - four-year-old Marcella, nine-year-old Maximo and 11-year-old Marina - look on with mom Rosa, a law professor at Wisconsin.

11:30 a.m. - The new mayor of DeKalb, John Rey, came by the press conference to greet new Associate Vice-President and Director of Athletics Sean Frazier.

11:45 a.m. - The Huskie Radio Crew - Mark Lindo and Bill Baker, along with NIU IMG General Manager Casey Kahler - share a smile and sign Frazier up for weekly updates prior to every football game broadcast.

Noon - Sean Frazier and President Doug Baker checked out progress on the Kenneth and Ellen Chessick Practice Center following the press conference.

12:15 p.m. - While grabbing a quick lunch in the football staff meeting room before heading to Chicago, Frazier checks his many, many phone and text messages.

12:45 p.m. - Frazier stopped to take a few congratulatory phone calls, including this one from one of the college football programming gurus at ESPN.

12:55 p.m. - Frazier gives his oldest daughter, Marina, a hug as his family returned to Wisconsin prior to the Chicago press conference.

1:00 p.m. - Before leaving the Yordon Center to head to Chicago, Frazier, Armato and President Baker ran into NIU star pitcher Eli Anderson.

2:20 p.m. - On the way to the Chicago press conference, with his cell phone running out of juice, Frazier borrowed the phone of Paige Streb (wife of NIU Faculty Rep and driver Matt Streb) and the NIU crew (including the Strebs and photographer Scott Walstrom) stopped at a hotel to let Sean call in to The Score for a live interview with Terry Boers and Dan Bernstein.

2:45 p.m. - President Baker takes on the role of photographer prior to the Chicago press conference at the Mid-American Club as Frazier greets a local alum.

3:30 p.m. - NIU head coaches Christina Sutcliffe (softball), Kathi Bennett (women's basketball), Rod Carey (football) and Mark Montgomery (men's basketball), who traveled to Chicago for the press conference and handled several media interviews following the event, posed for a picture with the new boss.

5:00 p.m. - Press conference number two in the books, and after a few cups of coffee and a light snack, Frazier checks his messages while waiting outside of the Aon Center on Randolph to be picked up for the next stop on his "tour".

5:45 p.m. - At the Comcast SportsNet studio in Chicago, Frazier preps for his spot on "SportsTalk Live". (Hope we don't get in trouble for posting this one Sean!)

5:50 p.m. - The comfortable seats in the green room at Comcast SportsNet were a great place to rest for a few brief moments before the live show.

6:05 p.m. - Frazier, a communications major at Alabama who once planned a career in broadcasting, was completely at ease with host Dave Kaplan and fellow guests on the set of "SportsTalk Live" as he talked about his plans for the Huskies.

6:15 p.m. - In the CSN Chicago newsroom, Frazier stopped to meet hosts Mark Schanowsky and Luke Stuckmeyer, who wished him good luck and congratulations.

7:30 p.m. - From Comcast, it was on to dinner with several Chicagoland donors, President Baker, members of the Board of Trustees and other invited guests at Cafe' Spiaggia on Michigan Ave. Frazier laid out many of his goals for Huskie Athletics.

8:30 p.m. - Throughout the day, Frazier did plenty of listening during his conversations with dedicated NIU supporters like Dave Rasmussen (center) and Dr. Ken Chessick (right).

9:45 p.m. - Packing up the NIU car to head back to DeKalb with NIU Faculty Rep Matt Streb at the wheel, Frazier had one question for photographer Scott Walstrom, "are you STILL taking pictures?"

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