Alumna Danielle McCartan on Ramapo and career

By KATIE SUTPHIN
On December 12, 2018

Photo courtesy of Danielle McCartan, Twitter

Ever tune into Ramapo’s non-commercial radio station, WRPR-FM (90.3) on Sunday mornings? Well if you have, I’m sure you’re very familiar with Ramapo’s very own alumna, Danielle McCartan and her radio show “60 Minute Overtime” that airs live every Sunday morning.  

“60 Minute Overtime” is an hour-long weekly program featuring McCartan’s hot takes on, level-headed opinions about and in-depth analysis of all things sports. She also orchestrates interviews with athletes, coaches and analysts, which can include World Series winners and Super Bowl champions.

Just to name a few, McCartan has interviewed Noah Syndergaard, Darryl Strawberry, Didi Gregorius, Brandon Marshall, Tino Martinez, Eric Decker, Tobin Heath and Lawrence Taylor.  

McCartan, being a Ramapo alumna, said she knew from her first tour on campus that she wanted to be a Roadrunner, as the school was the perfect distance from her hometown of Dumont, NJ.  It wasn’t too close but also wasn’t too far – about a 30-minute drive.

“I felt a different feeling than on the other tours I had been on,” McCartan said. “I still remember standing outside the Overlook dorms on the tour, thinking that it was the school for me.”

Shortly after her first on-campus experience at Ramapo, McCartan enrolled as an immediate decision candidate during her senior year of high school in 2006. Four years later, she graduated magna cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in Liberal Studies, concentration in Italian Language and Culture, and a Secondary Education Certification in May of 2010.  

When asked what she was involved in with on campus during her time at Ramapo, McCartan responded, “I did a lot of things at Ramapo while I was there – never radio, oddly enough!”  

McCartan recounted how her on-campus job was selling tickets and planning events and outings through Roadrunner Central, and she loved every second of it.

However, McCartan’s most prideful contribution to Ramapo was being the Vice President of the Italian Club, Il Circolo Italiano. Dr. Rosetta D’Angelo was a huge influence on McCartan and her time at Ramapo.

The two originally met in a mock-class on the day that McCartan was on campus for her immediate decision. After the class, Dr. D’Angelo found McCartan and her parents eating at Birch, and put her tray down to eat with them.

From there, Dr. D’Angelo explained all of the exciting things the Italian classes do at Ramapo: attending the Opera, studying abroad and holding conferences. McCartan greatly cherishes Dr. D’Angelo’s time in her academic career and life, “Having that personal connection with her starting that day eight years ago until even today was, and still is, invaluable.”

It wasn’t until late into McCartan’s college career that she had even considered Sports Media as an option. She grew up with sports as a “main focus” in her life, always watching or playing them.

“I played baseball with the boys, because it was the most competitive level at which I could play,” McCartan said proudly, “Until I was made to switch to softball right before I entered ninth grade.”

McCartan had this love for sports throughout her life, but had never thought of it as a career. Her original intrigue sparked senior year in Dr. R.A. Perry’s three hour, weekly Sports Media course.

McCartan recounted the time that Dr. Perry told her to come to his office hours before class to pitch her the idea of Sports Media as a career and to set her up with some sports media related contacts.

“I went, I knocked, but he wasn’t in there. I went to class and never said anything.” McCartan continued, “While I have a successful career as a high school Italian teacher, I never want to think back and wonder: ‘What if?’ I’ve tried to connect with him, but he no longer works at the school, and I have no way to do so.”

So today, a typical day for McCartan is teaching Italian at Ramapo High School from 7 a.m - 3:15 p.m followed by coaching after school sports, either JV girls softball or Freshman girls volleyball, from 3:15 p.m - 6 or 7 p.m.

After that, McCartan likes to turn her attention to professional sports. McCartan mentioned that she audited a digital content producing course with Professor Balton at Ramapo a couple of years ago because she was still interested in Sports Media.

That is when she began her weekly sports talk radio program, “60 Minute Overtime.”

In addition to teaching, coaching and writing/producing her own sports talk show on WRPR, Danielle McCartan is also a part-time, overnight, fill-in host at WFAN Sports Radio.  

“As of right now, I have a really cool side-job in addition to my career,” McCartan told us with content, “Of course, with practice at Ramapo, I’m looking to grow my role into a greater one.”

At WFAN, McCartan has the opportunity to connect with fellow sports fans, discuss sports intelligently, interview athletes, coaches, general managers and even team owners.

“A middle-of-the-night shift doesn’t even feel as crazy as it seems,” McCartan informed us.

“People are engaged and when that familiar WFAN jingle begins and I turn my microphone on, I can’t wait to talk about the New York teams that I’ve grown up loving.”

Of course, McCartan has endless gratitude towards Ramapo and WRPR for allowing her do what she loves while simultaneously growing her audience and returning listeners every Sunday morning.

“If I didn’t have my show on WRPR, there would be no way for me to practice things required of me at WFAN: remembering to include teasers, coming out of commercial breaks, the timing of the opening monologues, etc.,” McCartan commented.

McCartan even taught herself how to produce the content from the show into podcast form, which allows her to reach an even bigger audience. Throughout the week she reposts her content in podcast form for people to download and listen to at their leisure.

In the WRPR studio, McCartan has been able to hone her skills for “the big time”: formatting, editing, researching, explaining, producing, writing teasers, interviewing media personalities and athletes, etc.

McCartan said, “I’m grateful to have that opportunity there at Ramapo and still being in touch with the community there, even if it is a few years later.”

McCartan continues to drive her passion for professional sports by becoming more and more involved. Currently, she consistently writes for The Jet Press, and the Bronx Pinstripes which are two sports websites focused on her two favorite teams: the New York Jets and the New York Yankees.

She also posts game recap articles on her own personal website, www.prosportsrundown.com, along with links to her radio shows and podcasts.  

If you’re a sports fan, tune into WFAN-FM (90.3) every Sunday morning at 10 a.m. for a first hand listen of McCartan live, on the air, and in action. You can also check out her website for any other sports related content.

McCartan’s mini biography on The Jet Press sports blog perfectly sums up her life and her successes. It reads, “High School Italian teacher by day, sports writer by night. Lifelong Jet fan since the Kelly Green days. Aspiring professional sports reporter: dream big and follow your passion.”

 

ksutphin@ramapo.edu

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