Listening to Norse basketball on the radio has provided the opportunity to hear a Hall of Fame broadcaster who has been in broadcasting for over 50 years—Mike Tussey.
Tussey has recently chronicled his career in a book titled “You’re on the Air!” His book not only talks about his experiences with NKU, but also discusses his positions as a program director, a play-by-play announcer for a Chicago Cubs minor league team, an announcer for the Marshall Thundering Herd and Tussey’s work as a disc jockey.
He was inducted into the West Virginia Broadcasting Hall of Fame in 2005.
Tussey also spent 20 years in law enforcement and earned the Kentucky Law Enforcer of the Year award in 1989. He earned this award for an event he scheduled as a part of “National Night Out.” The event involved a mascot basketball game that included basketball coach Rick Pitino. Police work was what got Tussey to NKU, as he took the chief job at NKU in 1994. He officially retired from police work in 2003.
“The FBI trained me how to be a public relations officer,” Tussey said. “I was the guy that you saw on the 6 o’clock and the 11 o’clock news. When you’re a manager, you need to know the skills of the people under you. You need to know what you do well and don’t do well.”
In 2006, NKU needed a new radio announcer and Tussey got a call from Athletic Director Jane Meier. Tussey accepted the position. In 2008, the NKU women began a magical run, and the Norse brought home a national title. Tussey called the game, and still wears his NCAA Championship ring.
Now, at the age of 71, Tussey will be returning to broadcast NKU basketball once again.
“When I go work for NKU, I give it my heart, my soul and everything I’ve got,” Tussey said. “I love the university, I love being with the kids. We’ve got a relationship there. We talk. I can relate to the kids.”
Tussey will be in the Student Union on April 27 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., where he will be signing copies of his book, “You’re on the Air!” They are available for purchase for $24.95, and are also available online at Tussey’s website, http://www.miketussey.com.
Story by Nick Jones