By Alex Tuerk
University of Maryland men’s soccer coach Sasho Cirovski offered his advice on the mentality of a champion and the role of a sports reporter to journalism students at the Philip Merrill College of Journalism on Tuesday.
“Your world is probably more challenging than most any professions coming out right now,” Cirovski said. “Much like my labor of coaching, it’s a labor of love. Your money will come later. If you love it, you’re going to find your way.”
His remarks were part of the end-of-year reception held for graduating students by the Shirley Povich Center for Sports Journalism. Kaitlyn Wilson, assistant director for the Povich Center, said that the reception has been held every year since the center was founded in November 2011. This year, 21 students were in attendance.
“We do it to thank the seniors and get everyone together one last time before finals,” Wilson said. She added that the last couple receptions hosted the former Maryland football coach D.J. Durkin.
For the first half of the reception, Cirovski described the “champion” acronym he uses to motivate his players – commitment, humility, attitude, “model the way,” pride, initiative, overcome and “never say never.”
“Everybody is competing against you,” Cirovski said, “but you’re going to be the professionals. You’re going to be the higher standard.”
After his remarks, Daniel Oyefusi and Danielle Stein, seniors studying multiplatform journalism and broadcast journalism respectively, asked some questions they’d prepared beforehand.
“What’s your approach when you’re working with and talking to a reporter and going through interviews?” Oyefusi asked.
Cirovski said that the team has one meeting with the media relations official at the beginning of the season, but that the meeting is mostly focused on the players’ social media accounts. Otherwise, Cirovski said he doesn’t want to influence or dictate how his players act in front of a camera.
As for his own attitude both on and off camera, Cirovski said he holds himself to the same standards he does his team.
“I do a lot of individual molding, scolding, sculpting, all of those things that help shape the kind of people I want them to be,” Cirovski said, “which means I have to be very cognizant of the way I behave— my model is always on display.”
At the end of the reception, George Solomon, director of the Povich Center, asked several students to stand and be honored for their work in sports journalism at the university, as well as awards they had won over the past school year.