Meet Carter White, the voice of the Ames High Little Cyclones. New to this winter basketball season, home basketball games were streamed live on YouTube with exciting commentary from Carter.
Now a sophomore, his sports commentary aspirations date back to elementary school. As his younger siblings competed at athletic events, Carter would provide play-by-play commentary to himself as a way to stay entertained when he would attend their games. In 8th grade, he job shadowed radio stations in Des Moines and quickly made the decision that this type of career was one he wanted to pursue. “In 7th or 8th grade, I made the determination that I have a natural voice for and talent for this type of career,” said White. This was confirmed when he worked the drive thru at his part-time job at Wendy’s when customers would tell him he had a “good radio voice.”
Last year, before he got the play-by-play job, he had been commentating Ames High games in the student section to himself and those around him. He was spotted by Principal Spence Evans, who offered him the play-by-play job for this year. White wasn’t sure Evans was serious at first, but as the season grew closer, equipment was purchased and Carter found a permanent post in the corner of the auditorium calling both girls and boys games.
Carter does game prep best he can, with limited online resources, and is continually working on his craft. In January, he was visited by a true professional in the field: John Walters, Voice of the Iowa State Cyclones football and men’s basketball teams. Walters, who also began his career aspirations as a sophomore in high school, shared some of his in-game strategies, notes, and encouraged Carter to continue working hard.
This experience at Ames High is a resume builder for Carter, a way to build an online portfolio. “This could be good for college applications, a resume for a future job, and for overall experience.” But each night he calls a game, he comes prepared, which for Carter includes a jacket and tie. “I did a lot of research on preparation on how to be a play- by-play announcer. Dressing professionally is really important.”
On January 10, Carter was visited by John Walters, a legend in the field as the Voice of the Iowa State Cyclones. Walters has been the play-by-play commentator for the Cyclone football and men’s basketball team for 16 years. During their time together, he imparted some of his in-game techniques, shared his preparation strategy, and encouraged Carter to continue to improve his craft. Like Carter, John began his career aspirations as a sophomore in high school.