Coach on campus
Jonathan Coachman was surrounded by physical and exciting action, a large and extremely loud live audience and an electric atmosphere this past Saturday.
No, he wasn't at a WWE event, but rather a college football game.
The multi-talented RAW announcer was in the broadcast booth calling the action for the Morgan State-Bowie State football game in Baltimore, Maryland, on College Sports Television.
"It's definitely a different mindset, but just like WWE, you really never know what's going to happen," Coach said. "These are young college kids with a lot of emotion and the games are very unpredictable. It's a great atmosphere and I didn't feel out of my element at all."
Football fans will be seeing much more of Coach in the near future. In fact, Coach has signed on to call at least five more games for CSTV, the nation's first 24-hour college sports network.
"Three years ago, the network was just starting and they had an interest in me," Coach said. "I told them I wanted to stay at WWE, and that was that. But then a month ago, one of their guys called me and said they needed people to do these games. It was a great deal for everybody."
Coach, who handles the play-by-play duties, shares the booth with former NFL cornerback Curtis Baham. Although Coach hasn't done any mainstream sports announcing since his days as a local sportscaster in Kansas City, Missouri, he took to the action quite well.
For someone who has been a life-long sports fan, calling a college football game on live television was a major rush.
"I know television and I know and love football," Coach said. "So I knew that would get me through the first game. From there, you can always improve and polish things up. But I'm obviously no stranger to live television, so that didn't scare me in the slightest."
Still, Coach hasn't described the action of a football game in many years, giving him the slightest bit of uncharacteristic uneasiness before the broadcast.
"No matter how confident you are, when you haven't done something in a long time, there's going to be nerves," Coach said. "Even The Rock had butterflies before shows, but that's how you knew you wanted to be there."
As you might expect, Coach also enjoys the newfound exposure. CSTV has already expressed an interest in getting Coach to call a few college basketball games this winter. The ability to crossover between WWE and college sports is something Coach has always strived for in his career.
"I'm very excited to do these games," Coach said. "It's great for the company to have me doing things outside of WWE and getting our name out there. And it's great for me to be able to do something I've always had such a great passion for."
Still, don't expect Coach to leave his seat on RAW for any full-time gigs as a football or basketball announcer anytime soon.
"I love sports-entertainment more than anything," Coach said. "And I can't imagine doing anything else because it lets you be yourself. But, on the other hand, I've always had a passion for sports. I love how it is now, which is with me doing both. I can give both the same amount of respect, and I love doing both. I love to travel and I love to get my name out there so it works out. But WWE is where I'm going to stay."
COACH ON CSTV
(Games can also be seen on the PAX Network beginning Oct. 1)
Oct. 15, Grambling vs. Arkansas-Pine Bluff, 8:30 p.m.
Nov. 5, SE Lousiana at Sam Houston State, 5 p.m.
Nov. 12, Wofford College at Furman, 12:30 p.m.
Nov. 19, Alcorn State at Jackson State, 5 p.m.
Dec. 17, NAIA National Championship, teams and time TBA, at Savannah, Tennessee