‘Please allow myself to introduce … myself’

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The high school sports season has finally wrapped up, which is a huge relief.

Kenn Rodriguez

Not because of any summer break, mind you. Nope. It’s a relief because I finally have the time to write an introduction.

As Austin Powers, International Man of Mystery, famously said: “Please allow myself to introduce…. myself.”

My name is Kenn Rodriguez. Yes, two Ns on Kenn.

Pleased to meet you.

I’m the new sports reporter here at the News-Bulletin. I have been a freelance sports writer for the Albuquerque Journal and other state newspapers since 2001. I was a News-Bulletin news reporter and also wrote lots of sports stories for Daily Lobo at the University of New Mexico, where I got my journalism degree.

I’ve watched and loved sports all my life, thanks to my Dad — Frank “Lunky” Rodriguez. Jr.

I grew up in Las Vegas, N.M. Some of my earliest memories are of going to West Las Vegas High School football and basketball games with my dad.

I learned how to keep a score book at age 7. Around the same time, I learned to run the scoreboard at Robertson High’s old McFarlane Gym in Vegas. That kept me occupied while dad and his buddies played basketball.

My dad also taught me how to throw and hit, to catch and run, of course. But some people are destined to play and some are destined to watch and report what happened. That’s me. Besides, I was always a sore loser as a kid.

My dad grew up a norteño in Las Vegas, but when he was drafted into the U.S. Army, he was posted for a good while in the Bay Area, that’s where his sports loyalties lay

Dad was an Oakland A’s fan (they wore green and gold like his WLV Dons) and, through the 70s, was an Oakland Raiders fan — though he switched to the Niners when they hired Bill Walsh.

Oh, and we watched a lot of Albuquerque Dukes baseball with the family.

So that’s where I come from, sports-wise. That’s what makes me qualified to do the job.

As for where I’ll go as sports reporter here at Valencia County’s home newspaper, to be honest, I’m not sure. It’s going to be a challenge covering three Class 4A high schools with full compliments of boys and girls sports as well as two schools that play variously in Class A and 2A.

Getting all the other athletic endeavors of county athletes into the paper is also one thing I’d like to do a lot.

I’m hoping to use the News-Bulletin website (news-bulletin.com – bookmark it!) Facebook and Twitter a whole lot to get the news out as quickly and accurately as I can.

What I can promise is that I will do my best to get as many Valencia County athletes into print and on the Internet.

And to come at their stories from primarily a positive angle — the word “choke” is not part of my vocabulary.

I’m a “thrill of victory/agony of defeat” kind of guy (you youngsters should Google the words “Wide World of Sports intro” to see what I mean.)

I’m also a big fan of the underdog — I supposed that comes from watching so many years of March Madness.

Having said all that, remember folks, there’s only one of me and so many athletes and teams in the county. So I’ll need your help.

Feel free to call, write or email me to suggest stories (864-4472; krodriguez@news-bulletin.com). I’ll be looking and listening.

See you out there on the beat.