Passing the Torch: Alumni in Athletics

Meet three young alumni who are making waves in the field of athletics since graduating. Each has taken their love of sports, combined with the knowledge and values they gained at Georgetown and turned it into a rewarding vocation. Read on to find out how they did it.

Dan Long (C'07)
Sports Information Director, Bergen Catholic High School
From an early age, Dan Long had dreamed of becoming a play-by-play sports announcer, giving the running commentary on a live game. "I love the storytelling aspect of sports broadcasting because it's a huge part of the viewing experience," Long said. More

A transfer student from Providence College, Long received his Georgetown acceptance letter and immediately contacted Georgetown's campus television station, GUTV, and the Georgetown student radio station, WGTB, about a job. GUTV immediately hired Long as sports director, doing play-by-play announcing for Georgetown football games and men's lacrosse games.

Long worked at a local radio station in New Jersey after graduation as a football sideline reporter, then left for Bergen Catholic, his high school alma mater. "Being a sideline reporter gave me the sense that I could do something bigger. I decided to create my own Internet sports radio station and then pitched the sports broadcasting idea to [Bergen Catholic]," said Long, who credits Georgetown for giving him the creativity, motivation and inspiration to try new things.

The pitch was accepted, and it led Long to his current position in communications and sports information. Each day, he is responsible for updating and maintaining Bergen Catholic's athletics website that he created, where he writes about the school's sports teams. "I'm connecting alumni all around the world back to their alma mater," he explained. "It's the coolest thing getting to tell these stories about the games for various audiences outside of New Jersey." During the year, he also announces games for six different sports at BC.

"I feel that I'm on the right path in my career, and Georgetown has been a huge part of it," Long said. "You know you've chosen the right profession when you absolutely love it every day you work. That's the key for me, and I believe every student should be told this," added Long, whose end goal is to do play-by-play broadcasting at the professional level. "It's possible that one day I'll be calling the game-winning play at the Super Bowl."

Elizabeth Maloy DeBole (C'07, SCS'09)
Women's Distance Running Coach, Stanford University
As a four-time All-American track star at Georgetown, Elizabeth Maloy DeBole competed against some of the most competitive collegiate runners. More

She was a two-time U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association All-Academic selection and also earned the Big East Conference Scholar-Athlete Sport Excellence Award, which recognizes academic and athletic achievement as well as community service.

DeBole pursued a professional running career after graduate school and trained under her former Georgetown track coach, Chris Miltenberg (B'02), while holding a volunteer coaching position for Hoyas Track & Field. New Balance sponsored her during those four years as she trained for the 2012 U.S. Olympic Track & Field trials. After finishing seventh in the women's 5,000 meter run at the trials, she was ranked No. 8 in the women's 5,000-meter run in the annual U.S. rankings by Track & Field News.

In 2012, Miltenberg accepted a coaching position as Stanford's Franklin P. Johnson Director of Track and Field and DeBole decided to take a break from professional running. She landed a job at a public relations firm in Virginia, working with sports clients. However, it didn't take long for DeBole to realize that her passion for running wasn't as it once had been. "I had spoken with Coach Miltenberg about getting into the coaching world, and then this women's long distance assistant coaching position at Stanford opened up," DeBole said.

DeBole, who started the position in July 2014, is excited to use her personal experience as a student-athlete to create a positive experience for the Stanford team. "It means a lot if your coach has gone through exactly what you're going through. After looking back at how I handled certain situations and how I could have done some things differently, I feel like I have a lot of insight in how to succeed," she explained.

"Running is 99 percent mental, so getting these women to believe 100 percent in themselves is when they'll accomplish big things," DeBole added. "It's what coach Miltenberg taught me when I was an athlete, and now I want to make these girls believe in themselves too."

Nick Ennis (F'04)
Manager of Baseball Operations, San Diego Padres
As a young Chicago White Sox fan, Nick Ennis remembers sitting with his 10-year-old buddies and watching then-White Sox star Bo Jackson hit a game-tying homerun in the last inning of a regular-season game. More

The White Sox went on to win the whole thing. "It was a moment where baseball connects with you on an emotional level, and it's what keeps fans coming back," he said.

Baseball was always a big part of Ennis' life, but he'd never considered a career in sports management. After earning his MBA from Columbia, Ennis' post-graduation plan was to return to the venture capital industry; however, he decided to turn his life-long passion for baseball into a full-time career.

Ennis got his first experience in the baseball industry working as an intern for the Office of the Commissioner of Major League Baseball. After the internship, Ennis was offered a position with the San Diego Padres.

Today, Ennis works on a variety of tasks that impact the team, including helping the group of advance scouts determine how to beat the Padres' upcoming opponents.

"You need to have an analytical process for how you develop your thinking. I credit Georgetown for preparing me," said Ennis, who watches game film and studies the opponent's hitters, pitchers and tendencies. This information is used to help the coaches make decisions on everything from pitch selection to lineup construction.

Ennis' work also requires him to travel with the team for road games. "There is a glamour element to traveling with the team, but you get an appreciation for the players as they struggle to maintain routines," Ennis said. He added that it's not uncommon for players to fly across three time zones after a game, arrive late and have only a few hours of rest before starting over again the next day.

Ennis advises students to reach out to people in the sports industry before it's time to graduate. "It's a lot easier to have meaningful conversations with them and to help them understand the industry when there isn't the pressure of a potential job offer for either side," he explained.