Staff

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The Left Bench Board:

Director of HS Recruiting

Jake started writing for The Left Bench during the spring semester of his freshman year. He is from Rockville, Maryland and loves all things sports related. He is a fan of the Redskins, Wizards, Capitals and Orioles and has been following them closely since he was young. In addition to sports, Jake enjoys photography. He is currently a freelance photographer who works mostly Maryland and local high school sports. He is a journalism major.

Executive Producer TLBTV

Following an illustrious middle school basketball career in which he scored 1 point and committed 5 turnovers per game, Alex Flum hung up his jersey and decided to pursue a career in sports broadcast journalism.

A proud native of Montgomery County, Maryland, he is now a Junior in the Philip Merrill College of Journalism, majoring in Broadcast Journalism with a strong interest in sports journalism.

In addition to spearheading The Left Bench TV, he currently covers and broadcasts dozens of sports at the University of Maryland for the Big Ten Network Student U Initiative and the student-run radio station WMUC Sports.

In the past, he has interned for WJLA-ABC7 in Arlington, Va. and WBOC-TV 16 in Salisbury, Md. and written for The Diamondback sports section. His favorite journalism experiences include broadcasting a volleyball game on national television, covering the Maryland men’s basketball team at the NCAA Tournament Sweet Sixteen in Louisville, Ky. and his internship with ABC7.

Managing Editor

Maggie Gottlieb is the Managing Editor of The Left Bench and a senior   broadcast journalism student at the University of Maryland’s Philip Merrill College of Journalism, set to graduate in the spring of 2017. While she is the brunt of many jokes here at The Left Bench for her complete lack of sports knowledge, she feels this provides objectivity to her editing.

Hailing from the armpit of Maryland, Calvert County, she grew up a D.C. sports watcher (fan is a strong word). Her family cheers on the Redskins,  and Nationals. The one sport she does understand is soccer, having played for nine years, and she is often spotted cheering on Maryland soccer and yelling obscenities at the opposing team. 

Maggie’s true passion lies in hard news, having interned at Meet the Press and CNN. Her ultimate career goal is to become a network news producer. She is a producer/reporter for Maryland Newsline: CNS-TV (@cnsmd) and is involved with Maryland’s chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists (@umdspj).

Give her a shout on Twitter with questions, comments or helpful tips for sports ignoramuses.

Editor-In-Chief

Justin is a senior multiplatform journalism major at the University of Maryland. He was born and raised in Bexley, Ohio, a suburb right outside of Columbus, Ohio. He was brought up with sports all around him and it has been a constant throughout his life. He loves his hometown and the Blue Jackets through the highs and the lows (and there are many more lows than highs).

He knew he wanted to do sports journalism at age 16. He was watching SportsCenter after school with a friend when his friend pointed out that all he does is watch sports anyway, so why not turn it into a career? That’s all Justin needed, and he has dedicated his efforts to making his dream happen.

In addition to work with The Left Bench, Justin has interned at USA Today and The Columbus Dispatch. His favorite articles are write are profiles. Justin feels everyone has a story to tell, and he enjoys being the medium for giving those stories to the world.

Executive Producer TLBTV

Danielle Stein is a sophomore broadcast journalism major from Boston. She is an Executive Producer for The Left Bench TV and loves to anchor and produce packages for the show. Don’t say anything negative to Danielle about New England sports or you’ll find yourself in a heated argument. Tom Brady is the greatest of all time. Danielle always enjoys a good pun.

Business Director

Michael Stern is the Director of Business of The Left Bench. He is a broadcast journalism major and a member of the Class of 2016 at the University of Maryland’s Philip Merrill College of Journalism.

Hailing from the great town of Plainsboro, New Jersey (home of Andrew Bynum and Elmer the Cow), Michael grew up a fan of all Philadelphia sports team. The Phillies, Eagles, and Sixers are his home town heroes, and he will root for the Flyers if he must. He also grew up a Rutgers fan, so he has never experienced good college basketball.

Michael is the Business Director of WMUC Sports, Maryland’s all sports radio station. Michael is a Crew Chief at Capital News Service, and can be seen decked out in red in the second row at most Terps football and basketball games. Michael also works for Rabble.TV, a new all sports, real-time, digital sports broadcasting platform.

Feel free to contact Michael with any questions, concerns, comments, or ideas. If you would like to advertise with The Left Bench, send Michael an email.

Director of Personnel

Kofie is a native of Raleigh, North Carolina and he is currently a student at the University of Maryland. He recklessly live-tweets sporting events and enjoys good sports meme when he sees one.

As the Director of Personnel, Kofie take pride in adding talented, hungry writers who want to tell stories of the athletes. Kofie believes that stories are everywhere, you just have to look.

His strength? Networking. As the Director of Personnel Kofie realizes that missed opportunities lead to more missed opportunities. Kofie is always ready to seize opportunities, or even make opportunities, when they present themselves.

Kofie is the student liaison of the first APSE (Associated Press Sports Editors) student chapter at the University of Maryland.

Kofie has interned at D.C. United and USA Today College. He has also been contributor to USA TODAY College

The Left Bench Writing Staff:

Recruiting Writer

Jackie Budko is a huge baseball fan that found herself as a basketball and football recruiting writer for The Left Bench. She is a journalism and economics major from the suburbs of Philadelphia. Other than constantly defending Philly sports, she spends her time reading and unnecessarily online shopping. In addition to writing for The Left Bench, she serves as the athletics liaison between the University of Maryland’s student government and athletic department and works to empower other women to work in sports. She hopes the Eagles will win the Super Bowl in her lifetime.

Recruiting Writer

Kevin Brown is a freshman journalism student at the University of Maryland. Kevin is from Bear, Delaware and covers recruiting news and profiles for The Left Bench for lacrosse nationwide as well as other sports. Having played lacrosse most of his life, he loves to see the game grow. As an avid sports fan in general, Kevin follows soccer (particularly the Premier League and La Liga), professional basketball and football, as well as lacrosse. His favorite teams are Arsenal, the Philadelphia 76ers, Green Bay Packers, and has been a University of Maryland lacrosse fan his whole life. Other than The Left Bench, Kevin writes editorial articles for a website called the Last Word on Sports.

Recruiting Writer

Joe, a sophomore journalism major from Stratford, Connecticut, was never good at sports so he decided to write about them instead. As an active member of the bench on his high school’s sports teams, it was only fitting to keep that traditional alive as a recruiting writer for The Left Bench once he got to Maryland.

Aside from TLB, Joe is a Maryland women’s soccer beat writer for WMUC Sports, the Head-of- Engagement for The Rival at UMD and will be writing for the Maryland Baseball Network starting in the spring of 2017.

Recruiting Writer

Juan is a recruiting writer at The Left Bench. He is a big Manchester United, Packers, Baltimore Orioles and Washington Wizards fan; it’s a weird mix. Philip Merrill College of Journalism, University of Maryland, Class of 2018.

Recruiting Writer

Mitch is the North East recruiting writer for The Left Bench and is currently majoring in multi-platform journalism at the University of Maryland. He is a die-hard Philadelphia sports fan and his one wish is to see the Eagles win a Super Bowl before he dies.

Recruiting Writer

Joe, a freshman journalism major from Elmwood Park, New Jersey, was able to identify the logos of all 122 teams in the four major sports leagues before he knew simple multiplication. He joined his high school newspaper as a freshman, which is when he realized he could combine his passion for sports with his writing and broadcasting skills in order to make a living.

Aside from TLB, Joe broadcasts men’s and women’s soccer for WMUC Sports, serves as a videographer for the football team, contributes to Turn On the Jets (a New York Jets blog), and will be writing and broadcasting for the Maryland Baseball Network in the spring of 2017.

Recruiting Writer

Johnny likes sportz and he doesn’t care who knows, word to The Lonely Island. He has been a recruiting writer for The Left Bench since fall semester of his freshman year. He is from Columbia, Maryland and loves the Ravens and anything Terps related.  He is a multiplatform journalism major blessed with a slightly above average wingspan, but thats about it. UMD Class of 2019.

Recruiting Writer

Connor is a journalism major from Fallston, Maryland. Aside from TLB, he has also worked for Maryland Baseball Network, WMUC Sports and Fish Stripes on SB Nation. It is said that he will never be truly happy until the Orioles win a World Series in his lifetime. He reminds you to never bunt.

Recruiting Writer

Steven is a sophomore broadcast journalism major at the University of Maryland. Steven is from Ocean City, Maryland but is surprisingly is not a fan of the beach. He is an avid supporter of Arsenal, the Baltimore Ravens, the Baltimore Orioles and all things Terps. He enjoys bowling and golf, even though he has yet to figure out how to fix that slice yet.

Recruiting Writer
Katrina Schmidt is a freshman multiplatform journalism major from Baltimore, Maryland. Like the nice Baltimorean she is, Katrina is a Ravens and an Orioles fan, making her year very mediocre thus far. Besides covering high school recruiting for The Left Bench, Katrina is in Students Helping Honduras, a volunteer with the English as a Second Language program, and in College Park Scholars in the Justice and Legal Thought program. She also is a staff reporter for the The Writer’s Bloc, covering arts, activism, and politics.
Katrina has made it her goal to know at least a little bit about most things, making her either very interesting or very annoying at parties. For example, Katrina can knit, but nothing more than a scarf. Her hobbies theoretically include reading and photography, but this has boiled down to The Onion and maintaining a Vsco that includes less selfies than most people.
Recruiting Writer

Gillian has been writing for The Left Bench since 2014. She is a junior multiplatform journalism major at UMD. She enjoys covering high school, college and NBA basketball as well as other sports. She hails from Sudbury, Massachusetts, and is a huge Boston sports fan, especially the Celtics! Her interests include writing, photography, playing the guitar and playing basketball and softball. Her favorite food is lobster mac-and-cheese and the first time she called to order a pizza she was so nervous that she accidentally ordered “half cheese, half pizza.”

Recruiting Writer

Ben Warco is a freshman at the University of Maryland, and I am a multi-platform journalism major at the Philip Merrill College of Journalism. Although he grew up in Giants and Jets country, he is one of the biggest and most passionate New England Patriots fans you will find. Sundays are for football and football only. While his main focus is football, he has a passion for all sports and is an aspiring sports journalist. Give him any sport and he will write about it.

Recruiting Writer

Hannah Yasharoff is a sophomore multi-platform journalism major at the University of Maryland covering basketball and football recruiting. She has previously written sports ethics columns (a couple of which won The Left Bench’s first Society of Professional Journalists Mark of Excellence Award) and covered Maryland women’s basketball. A native of Potomac, Maryland, she is a diehard Food Network fan and listens to the “Hamilton” soundtrack way too often.

Recruiting Writer

Adam Zielonka is a graduate student in multiplatform journalism at the University of Maryland. He also works at The Capital’s sports desk in Annapolis and writes for whomever else will put up with him. He’s from Somerville, N.J. by way of DeSales University in Pennsylvania, which, no, is not LaSalle. One time the New York Post quoted his writing with the attribution “griped Jets blogger Adam Zielonka,” and sadly, that line was completely fair and accurate.

Football Beat Writer

Connor Mount is an analytics enthusiast, which is polite for “sports nerd.” Philip Merrill College of Journalism, University of Maryland, Class of 2017.

Columnist

Emily Olsen is the D.C. United beat reporter for The Left Bench. She has also covered basketball recruiting. Emily dreams of one day traveling the world reporting on the Olympics and World Cups. Emily enjoys coloring outside the lines.

Hockey Beat Writer

Chase is the Mid-Atlantic recruiting writer for The Left Bench and multi-platform journalism major at the University of Maryland. You can follow him on Twitter @chasepyke.

Videographer

Brandon Wong is from Rockville, Maryland and majors in Broadcast Journalism.  When he graduates, he will work for the National Institutes of Health in their communications office but hopes work in sports journalism sometime in the future.  Brandon is a fan of the Washington Wizards, Washington Redskins, and the Maryland Terrapins.  He is a member of The Left Bench photography team and is an administrator for Washington Wizards Nations, one of the biggest Wizard fan pages on Facebook.

The Left Bench Editing Staff:

Editor
Abigail Bentz is a member of the editing staff and social media team for The Left Bench in the Class of 2019. She studies Multiplatform Journalism at the University of Maryland’s Philip Merrill College of Journalism and has a passion for learning about people. Coming from small town Shrewsbury, Pennsylvania, Abigail is aware that she has much to learn about the world and looks forward to using journalism to do so.
Abigail is also a member of the University of Maryland varsity volleyball team, which means she knows a ton about volleyball and little about every other sport. However, being a student-athlete gives her a unique perspective on the world of college athletics.
Editor

Max is a freshman broadcast journalism major at the University of Maryland. He currently is a reporter for WMUC Sports covering Maryland Terrapin Field Hockey and a lead writer for New York Jet Fuel, a site dedicated to coverage of his hometown Jets.

Editor
Megan Smedley is a junior broadcast journalism major at the Philip Merrill College of Journalism. She is an editor with The Left Bench and helps in the production of TLBTV. Megan is also the News Director for WMUC Sports. There, she organizes crews to cover all of Maryland sports while continuing to broadcast and cover games as well.  She has previously written for The Baltimore Sun’s online department and is currently an intern for NBC Washington’s Sports Department.
Born just outside of Philadelphia, Megan is a die-hard Phillies fan. But because of her mom’s upbringing she is also a fan of the Boston Red Sox and New York Giants. So yes, the Super Bowl wins were extra special and she happily gloated throughout her Philadelphia suburb. Megan hopes to visit all Major League ballparks, having been to twelve already.

The Left Bench Social Media Staff:

Newsletter

Caroline is pursuing a degree in Broadcast Journalism with a minor in French at the University of Maryland, College Park. She dreams of one day covering the NFL as a day job while writing about (and probably snapping a picture of) her culinary endeavors as a self-proclaimed foodie and purveyor of fine dining in her free time. She’s loyal to her Terps and a lover of DC sports. And she’d like to see the Redskins rise from the doldrums and win a Super Bowl in her lifetime. 

Twitter Manager

Lamar is a contributor at TLB. He is also half of the @RobbieandLamar Show. He is in the Class of 2018 at the University of Maryland and a native of Prince George’s County, MD. He bleeds Philadelphia Eagle Green and can be found on twitter @im_lamar

TLBTV Staff:

Production Assistant

Jake Britton is the Multimedia Director of The Left Bench. He is a member of the class of 2018 at the University of Maryland and is a broadcast journalism major.

Jake is from South Brunswick, NJ, and will defend his home state until the day he dies. His favorite sports teams include the Yankees, Jets and the Knicks, and his favorite sport to watch is college basketball.

Jake is also a trusty volunteer at Capital News Service and on the broadcast crew at WMUC Sports, Maryland’s all sports radio station. He also is interested in video production and has been making videos since high school. Other than video production, his main interests and running and watching Netflix.

Feel free to contact Jake with any questions, concerns, comments, or ideas.

 

 

 

Production Assistant

I am from Bryans Road, MD. I attended Henry E. Lackey High School and graduated in the top 10%. I was the president of the National Honor Society as well the founder of the school’s spirit club. I was my schools morning announcer. I am currently a freshman in the Philip Merrill College of Journalism. I am interested in broadcast, with a focus in sports. I am in the Honors College and the Director of Communication in Resident Hall Association. In addition to TLB I am an employee with WMUC Sports. I am interested in play-by-play commentating and post-game interviews. In my free time I enjoy running and going on vacation.

Joke: What did Mr. and Mrs. Hamburger name their daughter?

Answer- Patty

Production Assistant

Noah is a freshman at the University of Maryland.  He is from the city of champions: Cleveland, Ohio.  Noah is interested in reminding the world that Golden State Warriors blew a 3-1 lead in the NBA Finals.  He also enjoys going into a state of depression for 16 Sundays a year, watching the pitiful Browns.  Noah is a diehard Indians fan too, and follows all teams in the NBA, NFL, and MLB.  Noah graduated from Kenston High School with an honors diploma in May 2016.  He had various internships back in Ohio, and loves to talk about anything, especially sports.

Production Assistant

Anna Muckerman began her career in sports journalism at the ripe young age of 8 when she played professional bocci in the alley behind her home. Later, she found her passions to equestrian and cricket. However, since the TLB does not cover those sports, she’s been reduced to the drudgery of an editor.

Actually, she’s a sophomore broadcast journalism major who has very little sports knowledge but enjoys editing TLB articles to learn the basics. She’s played volleyball and judo for many years, but unfortunately these skills do not help her at Superbowl parties or in March Madness brackets. 

At Maryland, she’s the news director for WMUC radio and a staff writer for the Diamondback, as well as a production assistant with Capital News Service. She hopes to become an international correspondent on a network newscast, or really, just make it on television somehow.

Executive Producer TLBTV

Following an illustrious middle school basketball career in which he scored 1 point and committed 5 turnovers per game, Alex Flum hung up his jersey and decided to pursue a career in sports broadcast journalism.

A proud native of Montgomery County, Maryland, he is now a Junior in the Philip Merrill College of Journalism, majoring in Broadcast Journalism with a strong interest in sports journalism.

In addition to spearheading The Left Bench TV, he currently covers and broadcasts dozens of sports at the University of Maryland for the Big Ten Network Student U Initiative and the student-run radio station WMUC Sports.

In the past, he has interned for WJLA-ABC7 in Arlington, Va. and WBOC-TV 16 in Salisbury, Md. and written for The Diamondback sports section. His favorite journalism experiences include broadcasting a volleyball game on national television, covering the Maryland men’s basketball team at the NCAA Tournament Sweet Sixteen in Louisville, Ky. and his internship with ABC7.

Executive Producer TLBTV

Danielle Stein is a sophomore broadcast journalism major from Boston. She is an Executive Producer for The Left Bench TV and loves to anchor and produce packages for the show. Don’t say anything negative to Danielle about New England sports or you’ll find yourself in a heated argument. Tom Brady is the greatest of all time. Danielle always enjoys a good pun.

TLB Audio Staff:

Podcaster

Josh Coggins is from Hanover, Pennsylvania (Yes the same small town the Utz Potato Chips and Snyder’s Pretzels are made). Josh is a broadcast journalism and criminology double major. When he graduates, he wants to become either a sports broadcaster or do something in sports management. Josh is a fan of the Baltimore Ravens, Baltimore Orioles, Washington Capital and of course the Terps! Josh is a member of The Left Bench audio team and has also started broadcasting games for WMUC sports. Catch Josh’s all Maryland sport talk podcast “Inside the Maryland Lines every Monday and Friday.

Podcaster

When handsome junior Sam Dyson isn’t busy writing for The Left Bench, he’s crying a lot because he roots for the Knicks, Capitals, and Redskins.

  • Ryan Queler

    Good afternoon,

    My name is Ryan Queler and I am a junior Multi-Platform Journalism major at UMD. I am currently looking to fulfill my 10 published articles for JOUR320, and would be happy to write for your publication. Please let me know if there are any stories that need writers, or when the next assignment meetings are.

    Thank you!
    Ryan