Behind the Mic: Arvin Domier, Andrew Kaitcer, Gautham Dixit and Trevor Mass

Known to keep fans on the edge of their seats, sporting events are high energy, competitive and passionate environments that bring all types of people together. KCR’s Arvin Domier, Andrew Kaitcer, Gautham Dixit and Trevor Maas successfully translate these epic moments onto the airwaves through their sports radio show, “Undefeated.”

Every Friday from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m., this quartet cover topics such as football, basketball and, most recently, baseball. At first, Arvin had no idea KCR existed until his guest interview on Weston Lowe and Ruairi McCann’s show. Following his appearance, he fell in love and proposed creating their own show to his current cohosts/roommates. Soon after, “Undefeated” was born.

In Fall 2017, Arvin, Andrew and Gautham took a more casual approach to their show format during their first semester as DJs. “Thirty minutes before we went on air, we would jot down notes and figure out what we would talk about from there. An example would be discussing our top five players in the NFL. We were still trying to figure everything out so it was very relaxed,” says Arvin. Now, since they’ve gained more listeners and added Trevor Maas as a cohost, more preparation is put into their content.

Each week, this group tackles huge topics covered on big name sources such as ESPN as well as events from SDSU’s intramural teams. In fifteen minute segments, the cohosts share their take on anything and everything sports related. Arvin focuses on football, baseball and basketball, and has even taken a keen interest on hockey. Andrew and Gautham concentrate on basketball and football whereas Trevor is the main man for baseball. Trevor, an economics major, admits, “The only professional sport I follow is baseball so KCR helps me to stay up to date with all of the players.”

One of their favorite segments was their Superbowl preview. Each cohost gave a break down of the coaching side and player side of both teams. In-depth predictions and analyses on team advantages were also brought up. By creating good sports dialogue, it keeps listeners engaged in open-minded opinions and perspectives. Their inspirations include Skip Bayless who is known for his raw and controversial viewpoints. Computer science major Gautham adds that shows like “Undisputed” and “First Take” with Stephen A. Smith and Max Kellerman are other influences.

In addition, changes in the show include a live-stream on their Facebook page and, according to Arvin, an unwavering hope to interview beloved former men’s basketball coach Steve Fisher. These four have big plans for improvement in order to create awesome content.

What sets them a part from other sports broadcasting shows? “Undefeated” is real and passionate.”My roommates and I decided to follow our love for sports and open up our daily living room talks to an audience,” says marketing major Andrew. One thing is clear: sports hold this dynamic team together.

Besides being DJs, Arvin, Andrew, Gautham and Trevor are third years who play on intramural teams like basketball, bowling, football, volleyball, softball and dodgeball. With their loaded course work, KCR has become a creative escape to unwind and speak their mind on a topic they all love.

Don’t forget to tune in to “Undefeated” every Friday from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m on KCR college radio. You can also watch their live-streams on their Facebook page.

Featured image by Arvin Domier

Behind the Mic: Matt Hoffman & Anthony Reclusado

Matt Hoffman and Anthony Reclusado pose in the Student Union at SDSU.

When people hear “the face of KCR,” they might think of KCR’s logo or the events KCR takes part in or puts on. But, members of KCR, some who have been around for years, probably think of General Manager Matt Hoffman and Programming Director Anthony Reclusado as the face of the organization. Members of KCR for nearly four years now, the roommates have held their management positions for half of that time and have greatly contributed to the radio station. I caught up with Matt and Anthony before their graduation for the last Behind the Mic of the spring semester. 

The pair made their debut on KCR in spring 2014 with “Delay of Game,” a show they have had on-air up to their final days as seniors. Anthony told me that during the fall semester of 2013, they contributed to “Aztec Circle,” a group sports show on KCR, because the two joined halfway through the semester and weren’t given their own time on-air.

Since beginning “Delay of Game,” Anthony explained that they have localized their sports coverage to San Diego. Listeners would have heard nearly an hour of Padres, Chargers, Gulls and Aztecs coverage every week. Matt described a headline segment, “Quick Shots,” that concluded each show. During this short period, Matt and Anthony would bring up national sports headlines and break them down, giving their opinions.

Prior to the move, each show began with the Chargers, with Aztec Football quickly following. Game recaps, injury reports and other player news all made up the usual discussions.

“We shoot for quality and consistency — that’s why the show is still here seven semesters later,” Matt explained. Anthony added that dedication made their show stand out, with Matt giving an example of a basketball ticket giveaway they conducted on-air a few years ago, requiring the two to wake up at 4 a.m. to stand in line for the tickets.

Matt and Anthony holding awards in the KCR studio.

KCR has won an array of awards while Matt and Anthony have served on management. Photo by Amir Badeanlo.

Matt has served as General Manager of KCR for two years, and prior to that (as a sophomore) he was Program Director. According to Matt, he spent the summer between management positions renovating the KCR studio. He collaborated with iHeartMedia to construct the current studio, which has professional equipment and safer furniture. “It all helps with the professionalism,” Anthony added.

The following summer, Matt worked to open a second studio: the production studio in the basement of EBA.

The culture of KCR has totally changed since their freshman year, according to both Anthony and Matt. “As soon as that studio changed, everything else changed,” added Anthony.

“It’s a lot bigger than it probably has ever been,” said Matt, referencing the sheer size of KCR’s current membership.

Matt described how amazing it is to see members of KCR, past and present, earn internships and obtain positions in the media industry, noting that KCR was the starting point for many. Getting people interested in radio has been one of Matt’s responsibilities. He mentioned current Production Director at KCR, Jack Sellas, as an example. Jack became an active member, obtained a management position and is now looking at radio as a potential career.

“KCR will always be a part of my life,” said Anthony.

Matt currently works as a news assistant at KPBS, where he also covers on-air stories. Additionally, Matt is a writer and producer for the morning shows at NBC 7 San Diego. After his upcoming graduation in May, Matt plans on working full-time at NBC.

Anthony has worked with Matt as Program Director for two years. During his senior year, Anthony served as Sports Editor for The Daily Aztec. He currently interns at FOX 5 San Diego, and will move back to the Bay Area after graduation to continue his media career. 

Featured Image: Matt Hoffman and Anthony Reclusado are preparing for their graduation in May and departure from KCR. Photo by Amir Badeanlo.

Behind the Mic: Brandon Battaglia

Brandon Battaglia in front of some shrubs by West Commons.

Listeners and fans of KCR College Radio know of the variety shows broadcast on-air. But, what some are not aware of is KCR’s coverage of Aztec Baseball. During the season, commentators, such as Brandon Battaglia, take to the airwaves from Tony Gwynn Stadium. I sat down with Brandon for a special edition of Behind the Mic.

As a new member of KCR, Brandon went ahead and auditioned for baseball commentating at the beginning of this spring semester. First, Brandon was assigned to two games in the beginning of the season – and his performance warranted more appearances. Since then, Brandon has commentated nearly 10 games for KCR.

To get a better understanding of what it’s like to commentate, I had Brandon walk me through a typical game. He and his partner, Sean Nichols, arrive to the stadium about an hour prior to the first pitch. During this time, statistics and information, including topics like “who’s gonna be big in the game” and “players’ backgrounds,” are gathered about the opposing team.

Going into the commentating gig, Brandon told me he didn’t have many expectations. However, he now believes it will all work out.

An avid fan of the sport, Brandon told me, “Watching baseball non-stop is finally paying off with [commentating].” He added that he “just has a really good time doing it.”

In addition to KCR’s live broadcast of baseball games, Brandon has begun covering games for the Mountain West Conference. According to Brandon, he got a call from KCR’s General Manager, Matt Hoffman, to fill in for a game. After a successful broadcast, Brandon and his partner Sean were signed on with the network for the remainder of the season.

Brandon, an international security major, joined KCR in January 2017 as a sports talk show host for “Diamond Sports.” He and Michael Quinn host the show every Saturday at 2 p.m. They equally cover San Diego State teams and professional sports. During the season, the SDSU basketball team was the trending topic on each show. Brandon told me he addresses current player moves, playoffs and other headlines for the NBA and NFL.

Listeners can expect to hear a lighthearted debate about sports between Brandon and Michael. Brandon mentioned that the two try to make the show sound like a normal conversation, adding that “it’s a people’s sports show.”

Brandon has hopes to resume commentating for both KCR and the Mountain West in the 2018 season.

You can catch some of Brandon’s written commentary on Aztec baseball games, and listen to his show, on KCR’s website. For the other games, Brandon’s coverage can be viewed on the Mountain West website.

In addition, you can find your favorite DJs on our KCR schedule.

Featured Image: Brandon Battaglia, a sophomore at SDSU, is optimistic about his future in commentary. Photo by Sumner Shorey.

Behind the Mic: Tony Berteaux & Daisy Santana

Daisy and Tony posing in the KCR studio.

Some of the best entertainment can come from the most natural and off-the-cuff conversations and reactions. Tony Berteaux’s and Daisy Santana’s “22 and Not Pregnant” does just that every Thursday at 7 p.m. Both hosts were able to join me for another edition of Behind the Mic.

Tony created the show during his first semester at San Diego State nearly three and a half years ago. Daisy came on-board when the show was “18 and Not Pregnant,” and has been on air with each age iteration of the show since.

During the show’s early days, the two covered trending reality television including such shows as “Honey BooBoo.” According to Daisy, the show has since developed into a general coverage of pop culture and “hot topics — whats going on in the news, whats going on with celebrities.” The two added that their personal lives and stories reach the air too. Tony pointed out there are recurring characters that  have appeared on air and within stories including Teddy, Nick Santana and other friends of the hosts.

Daisy said every week’s show is different, with either a mix of pop culture talk and personal stories, or one dominating the showtime over the other. Listeners can expect the show to be completely improvised and natural. Tony pointed out that the “uncensored nature” of the show is what makes “22 and Not Pregnant” unique for listeners.

Food reviews are one of many featured segments that come on-air. Tony explained that he will buy something from the Aztec Market (not sponsored), eat it live on air and follow up with a review.

Online quizzes, such as the ones on BuzzFeed, are also featured on-air, with the two hosts completing them together.

Daisy told me the best part of hosting is, “bringing the creativity that’s in our minds and our personalities and putting that on-air.” Both hosts agreed their show is an hour to escape their lives and to let loose.

Improvisation rules are an element of the discussions on-air, according to Tony.

Despite the concentration on pop culture and their personal lives, the two do hold music breaks, usually with Tony’s picks. Indie and other “chill” music can be heard in between the hot topics.

Tony and Daisy with the KCR letters in studio.

“22 and Not Pregnant” can be considered a legacy show at KCR.

As seniors, both Tony and Daisy have busy lives outside of KCR. Daisy is President of PSFA Civil Core, the official service and volunteer organization of the College of Professional Studies and Fine Arts. She also works alongside the communications director of PSFA to manage the college’s social media. Daisy works as a student assistant in the Dean’s Office in PSFA.

Tony is a Campus Editor for the Huffington Post. His writings focus on Asian-American representation and antisemitism. Tony also interns at the San Diego Union Tribune. He manages the public relations for SDSU’s chapter of Society of Professional Journalists. Both Daisy and Tony are majoring in journalism and media studies.

On an additional note, Tony let me know that he assisted in making current KCR General Manager, Matt Hoffman, who he is today. Years ago, Hoffman, who was not a KCR member at the time, approached Tony inquiring about the radio station.

Unfortunately, “22 and Not Pregnant” has run its course and will be retired this semester with Tony’s graduation in May. “It would not be the same without the person who created it,” said Daisy. Daisy will continue on KCR with a new show in the spring of 2018, after she returns from studying in Belgium.

Catch the remaining episodes of “22 and Not Pregnant” on KCR College Radio every Thursday from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m.

In addition, you can find your favorite DJs on our KCR schedule.

Featured Image: Daisy and Tony’s friendship adds value to the entertainment they provide on-air.