Purdue Profiles: Tim Newton
Tim Newton, play-by-play radio announcer for Purdue women's basketball. (Purdue University photo/Andrew Hancock)
In 20 seasons as the play-by-play radio announcer for Purdue women's basketball, Tim Newton has given voice to some of the greatest moments in the program's history. Like most fans, his most memorable game remains the Boilermakers' NCAA Tournament championship victory over Duke in 1999. But there are too many other favorites to list.
"You also would have to include the win at Illinois before a sellout crowd in Champaign for the Big Ten championship in 1997, the win at Stanford in 1994 to send Purdue to its first Final Four, the Big Ten Tournament win over Illinois in 2008, which the Boilermakers needed to make the NCAA Tournament," says Newton, who also serves as the voice of Purdue football and director of external relations for the Krannert School of Management. "It's hard to pick just a few."
Along with the coaches and players, the veteran broadcaster is always preparing for the next great moment in Purdue women's basketball -- and the team's next opponent, the University of Michigan Wolverines, who will tip off against the Boilermakers on Thursday (Jan. 6) at 6:30 p.m. in Mackey Arena.
Purdue Today caught up with Newton between games for a quick Q&A about his career, women's college basketball, and this year's team.
How would you describe your role as a play-by-play announcer?
I always answer this question with what one of my mentors, John DeCamp, taught me: "Tell them what you see." It's my job to put listeners into my eyes and to describe the action as vividly and accurately as I can. I tell people what happened; the analyst tells them why it did. I've been fortunate over the years to work with people like Nancy Cross, Tom Schott, Kathleen Offer, and my current broadcast partners, Jane Schott and Sara White, who are very good at doing that.
What changes have you seen in women's college basketball over the past two decades?
Certainly, the media attention is greater than it used to be, although there is still a way to go. The same with crowds -- better, but still room for growth. The rise of AAU basketball has helped the development of young players coming into the program, although I think it has its downside as well.
Do you maintain contact with any of the players after they graduate or follow their careers?
Absolutely. In fact, one of the most gratifying parts of this job has been to watch young people mature, both on and off the court, and then to stay in touch with them as they take off in their various fields. We have a tradition of outstanding basketball players in this program at Purdue, and an even better legacy of people. I think all Boilermakers should take pride in this program.
What's special or unique about this year's team?
The early injury to KK Houser and Drey Mingo's serious illness have forced this team, which had great camaraderie to begin with, to become an even tighter and more cohesive unit. I think Sharon Versyp and her staff did an incredible job keeping the players focused during a difficult time, and even though there has been a rough patch lately, those efforts will pay off this year and into the future. I would urge anyone who has never come to a game at Mackey Arena to give it a try. I believe you'll go away feeling you've been entertained.
For more information
Visit www.purduesports.com to purchase tickets for upcoming games and find broadcast partners on the Purdue Sports Network.