Published Jan. 20, 2021
BY KEA YENGST
Ethan Wacker, who played the lovable character of Bernie Schotz on Disney’s “Bizaardvark,” comes back into the public eye with fellow Vanderbilt classmates to analyze sports statistics in “The Vandy Blitz.”
Wacker, alongside co-hosts and current Vanderbilt students Jacob Harris, Andrew Wilf, Joe Angella and Theo Hodges, analyzes statistics from NFL and NBA teams and receives personal insight from coaches and players, including Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Adam Thielen and Vanderbilt Women’s Soccer assistant coach Kelly Keelan.
In the episode, “INTERVIEW: Vanderbilt Assistant Coach Kelly Keelan talks Championships, Sarah Fuller, and the future,” the hosts asks Keelan questions about women affiliated with sports other than soccer, including Vanderbilt football placekicker Sarah Fuller. All five hosts contribute to the interview with little to no error, and the dynamics within the interview make for an interesting conversation with the coach. The episode’s interview comes off as if it had been rehearsed many times prior to recording.
Despite the large quantity of amateur sport analysis published, the “Blitzers,” as they call themselves, could do a better job in podcast accessibility. While the podcast is present on practically every platform imaginable, the episodes are sporadically distributed throughout all the platforms and not all episodes are available for listening.
Even though there are issues regarding the accessibility, the Blitzers have attained a larger presence on more platforms than other podcasts, even creating visual episodes out of the original podcast material, many of which are recorded Zoom meetings with interviewees on their newly formed Youtube channel.
The minimal amount of editing within the podcast is noticeable, especially with the fact that each episode goes straight to the point and does not have musical or edited transitions that are a common occurrence in other podcasts. It comes across as surprising that Wacker and his co-hosts do not include any sort of transitions, especially when they move from subject to subject. All episodes go straight into the conversation, making each topic clear and straight to the point without any additional buffering.
Despite their raw conversation throughout each episode, the five hosts maintain a concise theme, great for listeners who desire sports content focused on a particular athletic, sport or statistic. “The Vandy Blitz” does contain some profanity here and there, especially when in discussion of which athletes deserve higher salaries or what teams could have performed better during playtime. Additionally, the hosts’ somewhat frequent pausing and use of filler demonstrates a level of unpreparedness inconsistent with the podcast’s creative cast.
In spite of some awkward moments during interviews, the podcast is an excellent pick for sports fanatics who want to hear different predictions and evaluations of plays, performances, and athletes on and off the field, especially those affiliated with the NBA, NFL and NCAA.
“The Vandy Blitz” can be streamed on Spotify or anywhere else you get your podcasts, and new episodes are released every week.