Meet Troy’s 12-year-old sports technical director

12-year-old Ethan Prendergast volunteers as a technical director for the Troy Trojans.
Published: May. 9, 2023 at 9:34 PM CDT|Updated: May. 9, 2023 at 10:28 PM CDT
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TROY, Ala. (WSFA) - The control room inside Trojan Arena is a busy place during Troy’s home baseball games. And the age of one of the technical directors getting those games on ESPN+ might surprise you.

12-year-old Ethan Prendergast is a familiar face at Riddle-Pace Field. He’s often seen hanging out with friends, interviewing players, or even chatting it up with broadcasting director Barry McKnight.

When he’s not in the stands, Ethan can usually be found in the control room where the TV magic happens. This is where the young director cues up the broadcasts, tells his crew when to pop up graphics, switches cameras, runs replays and talks to people behind the scenes to keep the show running smoothly. Ethan described it as “giant switcher, giant room, lot of electronics, and it was just crazy.”

“I work for ESPN kind of,” he said.

Ethan doesn’t get paid by ESPN or Troy. He volunteers because he loves it.

He got started last year when he asked his father, who is Troy’s associate athletics director, if he could watch the crew in the booth. After that, he wanted to help out. The crew welcomed him in, and Ethan soon had a new gig.

Now whenever the Trojans play baseball, basketball or some softball games at home, it’s often Ethan running the show.

“Replay’s real easy. I would say the hardest is the switcher because you’re kind of like in control, and if you do one bad thing it can mess up the whole ESPN production,” he said.

Ethan is also a play-by-play announcer for middle school games at Charles Henderson. But he said he’d like to continue working on the technical side of things, saying he really enjoys the technology involved in the productions.

His advice for other kids looking to get into the business is “don’t give up. Just do what pushes you.”

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