Topher Goggin '02 From Men's Golf & Sports Info to General Practice Attorney and College & High school Play-by-Play

Topher Goggin '02 From Men's Golf & Sports Info to General Practice Attorney and College & High school Play-by-Play

Current Job Title:  My "real" job is working as a general practice attorney in my hometown in central Michigan. My fun job is serving as the play-by-play announcer for WQBX-FM, covering Alma College Football and Basketball, Alma High School Football and Basketball, and other local sports. I've gotten to announce a number of state championship games for the MHSAA Network (you can barely see my head in the background of the Emoni Bates issue of Sports Illustrated calling his freshman year title game).  I've also written a humor book called "Not Your Mother's Goose" - basically sarcastic fairy tales for grownups.

Williams graduation year:  2002

Sport(s) played at Williams:  Golf

Degree you earned at Williams:  B.A. in Mathematics and Chemistry

How you got involved in Eph Sports Information:  I had a radio show on WCFM, and was good friends with Mark Robertson '02, who was already doing some broadcast work. He asked me to help him call a couple of basketball games our sophomore year. The next summer I broke my ankle – in a golf tournament. That ended my fall golf season, but freed me up to start calling Eph Football games with Mark. We had a great time, and I stayed on from there (since I kind of stunk at golf anyway).

What were your duties in Ephs Sports Information:  Play-by-play broadcaster for Eph Football and Men's and Women's Basketball. (Also called one Women's Hockey game which was a total disaster. Middlebury had two sets of sisters on their team with similar names and numbers. My broadcast effort was, uh, interesting.)

Favorite Eph Sports Information memory:  There are so many choices, nearly all of which involve mishaps or technical catastrophes, ranging from calling half a game at Trinity oblivious to the fact that we weren't on the air, to Drew Newman getting locked out of the booth midway through the fourth quarter and never returning at Amherst. (Mark Robertson speculated on-air that "Maybe Drew was eaten by one of these rabid Amherst fans....")

The one that takes the cake, though, came from a football game at Hamilton in 2000. Mark and I made the drive to Clinton, NY, where we were greeted by a press box that Thoreau would have deemed "pretty rustic." We quickly noticed that it only had two-pronged electrical outlets, while our radio box required a grounded three-pronger. I asked their sports info director if he had an adapter. He assured me he did – it was on his desk – and he'd grab it for me. I followed him like a puppy dog for 20-30 minutes (while nervously watching the pregame clock countdown toward 0:00). It eventually became clear that the SID was way too busy to look for any adapters, if one even existed. Finally, in desperation, I asked, "Do you guys have a Walmart around here?" "Sure." "Great - where is it?" "About a half-hour up the road." "Oh."

With time running down, Mark and I decided that I would drive to town in hopes of finding a solution, while he would stay put in case a workaround materialized on site. I hopped in my car (giving up a very good parking space, by the way) and headed in the direction of where I hoped "town" might be, miraculously discovering the Great American Supermarket of Clinton, NY. I bolted into the store, and I swear, it was like I was guided by magic straight to the end-cap where a $2.99 adapter waited. I debated throwing $5 at the checkout clerk and just making a dash for it, but still couldn't have been in the store more than 2 minutes even completing the full transaction. I tore off back for campus, found a (much worse) parking space, and then took off on a dead run to the press box. Mark had everything ready to go. We plugged in and were on the air almost immediately, which was actually not so helpful, as I was absolutely gassed from the run and literally gasped through the entire first possession. I also had no idea what was happening in the game, which was already midway through the first quarter. Just another high quality broadcast from the team of Toph and Mark.