St. Thomas juniors Ben Kula and Matt Baloun have created their own online sports talk show, “Baloun and Ben in the Morning,” where people can get the latest updates on national sporting events.
Kula and Baloun said they want to get sports news out to people through three to five minute videos on YouTube.
“It’s for people who are in a rush that can’t sit down and watch the full SportsCenter,” Baloun said.
Juniors Matt Baloun (left) and Ben Kula (right) pose for their first photoshoot before filming a new episode of their sports show, “Baloun and Ben in the Morning.” The duo aired its first show Tuesday, Feb. 5. (Courtesy of Ben Kula and Matt Baloun)
Baloun said the show focuses on four sports: basketball, baseball, football and hockey. Other sports, like golf and soccer, will also be part of the show depending on which are most popular that week.
“Three times a week we’ll make a video … going over the top sports stories from the past day or so, or previewing stuff for the next day,” Kula said.
The idea first came in December and became a reality Monday when the duo posted its first official episode on YouTube. So far the video has has over 100 hits.
“Freshman year, I used to watch a lot of stuff on YouTube. They had a lot of shows like this, but more just regular news-based. I had seen those and I thought they were pretty cool,” Kula said. “I thought of kind of doing it at one point; I just didn’t really think it was going to happen.”
To promote their new show, Kula and Baloun created a Facebook page, “Baloun and Ben in the Morning.” They invited their friends via Facebook, and some have also subscribed to their YouTube channel. Within a week, the page has accumulated about 100 likes.
Christopher Puto, Opus College of Business dean, said that using Facebook is an excellent way to promote the show.
“The basic principles to follow are: What is the actual need they are solving? Who has that need? And how do I reach them?” Puto said. “You need to have something that suits the needs of the majority and doesn’t offend the rest.”
Both Kula and Baloun are aspiring business majors, and although they started producing their show for fun, they would be happy to use their hobby as a new business opportunity.
“People on YouTube that get enough subscribers or enough views, they do that as a full time job,” Kula said. “People with like, two million subscribers and who get millions of views on every one of their videos, they make, you know, six-figures, just by doing YouTube videos.”
The duo said that isn’t something they expect to happen, but they are both going to work hard to promote what they think could be something business-worthy.
Sophomore Molly Behun said she would be interested to see the show.
“I would probably watch it to check it out,” Behun said. “I think it’s really cool that they’re starting it on campus.”
Senior Joe Deiley said the show is a good idea because it’s from a college student’s perspective.
“I would like it if it’s something that I could listen to in the morning while getting ready,” Deiley said.
Looking ahead, Kula and Baloun said both of their brothers are interested in sports and that they could end up being guests on the show.
“We’ll have to see if we want to bring someone in as an expert in the field or to have other people come in,” Kula said. “We haven’t really talked a lot about guest speakers, but it’s definitely something we’ll look into to see if it’s a possibility for the future.”
Anne Becken can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.