If you’ve watched a Canadian Football League game this season, chances are you were watching the work of Chatham native Katrina Squazzin and didn’t even realize it.
Katrina, who just completed her four year double major from Carleton University in media and law, has been writing previous and game recaps for the league’s website, cfl.ca.
“It’s great,” she said. “I get paid to watch football.”
Each week she gets assigned to particular games, analyzes the teams and writes a preview letting viewers know what to expect.
During the game, she’s constantly updating a game story that has to be posted within a few minutes of the contest.
The 22 year-old former Pines student who wrote articles for the Voice before heading off to school, said she was seeking an intern’s job after graduating this year.
“They said they really liked me but I wasn’t chosen as an intern,” she said. “That’s not unusual but they told me to keep in touch and it wasn’t very long before they called me and offered me this job.”
While in Ottawa earlier this year she was attending the games at TD field but since moving home, she’s been doing it while watching games on television.
Although she enjoys watching, the work involved means it’s not just a casual effort.
“For the average viewer, a play is completed in a few seconds, the players go back to the huddle and then 30 seconds later or so the next play happens. For me, that 30 seconds involves gathering the information and determining what I’m going to use.”
She’s also involved with updating the league’s photo site from photographers at the game. “From updating the live feed to getting things ready for the “newser” which is what we call the postgame story, the three or four hours of a game go by pretty quickly.”
Katrina has covered games involving all nine teams in the CFL and believes the eventual Grey Cup winner will come from the eastern conference.
“Ottawa, Toronto and Hamilton are all pretty strong this year so I think one of them will have a pretty good chance.”
She enjoys the wide-open aspect of the CFL where the three-down format and bigger field lead to more excitement.
Katrina’s overall goal is to be a reporter or an anchor for one of the major sports networks such as TSN or Sportsnet, but for now she knows she has to gain experience.
“It’s been a great opportunity working for a professional sports team right out of university,” she said. “I’ve learned a lot and improved a lot as well. Whatever I end up doing, I’ll have to write my own scripts so the experience is very valuable.”