ISU broadcasting finds its stride with 13 IBNA awards

CATEGORIES: News, Students

AMES, Iowa — Students from the [KURE 88.5 sports department]( and [ISUtv]( received several student media honors at the 2016 [Iowa Broadcast News Association Awards](

KURE Sports submitted to IBNA for the first time and was recognized with eight awards in the student radio division. Taylor Mankle, KURE sports director and graduating senior in journalism and mass communication, attributes the achievement to the team’s dedication, passion and shared vision of pursuing new and different content.

“KURE Sports has really grown tremendously in the past three years. When I started and took over as sports director, we had about one show a week and five to six members. Now we do seven shows a week and have roughly 35 members,” Mankle said.

“The Clone Zone” sports talk program, which launched in spring 2015, received first-place and second-place recognitions in the sports coverage category.

“You could really tell we were having fun,” said co-host Garrett Kroeger of the broadcasts. “We kept the flow of the show going. There were no dead moments.”

Kroeger, junior in journalism and mass communication, said the “The Clone Zone” includes commentary on ISU athletics and lesser known sports (handball, anyone?), debates about “the greatest of all time” and discussions about weighty issues, such as domestic abuse in sports, while giving aspiring journalists airtime opportunities.

Mankle, who’s also the ISUtv sports director and on-air executive, received several personal honors, but he’s proudest of the first-place finish for his solo over-the-air sports play-by-play broadcast of the ISU men’s basketball game versus Kansas State on KURE. Calling the game without a color commentator made the experience more challenging, he said.

“There’s a lot of pride within the KURE sports department right now,” Mankle said. “This pride also inspires us to keep pushing for bigger and better things.”

From left to right: Taylor Mankle, Lisa Greenwood and Andreas Haffar accepted 2016 INBA awards on behalf of ISUtv.

Combining classroom and club learnings

ISUtv took home five awards in the student television division, including a second-place finish in the political coverage category for its [Iowa Caucus Special](

Raluca Cozma, associate professor and ISUtv faculty adviser, said the station produced two election specials, one for the caucuses and one for the [general election]( She said both require “elaborate orchestration” by the entire team because the organization produces videos beforehand, sets up live shots from precincts, creates graphics on the fly, presents without a script as information comes in and highlights candidates’ platforms on several issues.

“I’m very proud of them. Many of them are graduating. I’m so happy that they could go out in the world with that proof of their hard work,” Cozma said. “I feel that [the specials are] a culmination of all the skills they’ve been acquiring at the Greenlee School.”

Andreas Haffar, general manager of ISUtv and graduating senior in journalism and communication and international studies, said the team hadn’t submitted to IBNA since he joined in 2013 but made it a goal this year to bring “ISUtv back into the limelight.”

In 2013, the studio moved from the Communications Building, which was larger and had a direct cable line to local TV, to 171 Hamilton Hall, a smaller space. While the move meant upgraded digital technology and better graphics capabilities, it has also required members of ISUtv to schedule studio time around classes taught in the same space and learn new equipment.

“The 2016-2017 year was like a revival. Despite all of these limitations, we were able to make the most of our resources,” Haffar said. “For instance, I was adamant that we boost our social media presence because platforms like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram are boundless; not only is that the trend these days, but we can post as much as we want.”

Looking to the future

ISUtv and KURE Sports leaders are optimistic as they pass the reins to next year’s executive team members, whom they hope will continue to look for ways to grow and improve the content.

“You’ve put so much blood, sweat and tears into it and to see it go off on its own is a special thing,” Mankle said.

They anticipate some of the organizations’ more recent collaborations will inspire future creative thinking. For example, this year ISUtv forged a partnership with Cyclone Hockey and ISU Student Government and its programming also now airs locally on Mediacom 121.16.

KURE and ISUtv also collaborated on regular sports programming, which has been a mutually beneficial relationship for the organizations and its members, many of whom belong to both.

“I’m most proud of the durable foundation we have set for future students and soon-to-be professional broadcast journalists,” Haffar said.

See the complete list of 2016 IBNA award winners from Iowa State below:

INBA Student Radio Winners

  • First place, Sports Coverage: The Clone Zone 3-29-2016, KURE, Taylor Mankle, Garrett Kroeger, Alex Crowl, Joey Mullins
  • Second place, Sports Coverage: The Clone Zone 11-10-2016, KURE, Taylor Mankle, Garrett Kroeger, Joey Mullins, Allen Fiddelke, Andrew Haffar
  • First place, Sports Play-by-Play (Over-the-Air): ISU MBB vs. KSU, KURE, Taylor Mankle
  • Third place, Sports Play-by-Play (Over-the-Air): ISU FB vs. WVU, KURE, Taylor Mankle and Garrett Kroeger
  • First place, Sports Play-by-Play (Web-based): ISU WBB vs. Mississippi State, KURE, Taylor Mankle and Michael Murrell
  • Second place tie, Sports Play-by-Play (Web-based): ISU WBB vs. Drake, KURE, Taylor Mankle and Mary Rominger
  • Second place tie, Sports Play-by-Play (Web-based): ISU MBB vs. The Citadel, KURE, Taylor Mankle and Hank Zimmerman
  • Second place tie, Sports Play-by-Play (Web-based): ISU WBB vs. NIU, KURE, Taylor Mankle and Pat Stanek

INBA Student Television Winners