Unsung Hero at West Brom Basketball Club

You might know plenty about some of the players at West Brom Basketball Club, but what about the people who don’t take to the court?

Jordan Watkins, who handles much of the club’s media presence is one such person, get to know him here…

So Jordan, what would you say your role is at West Brom, and what does it entail?

My role is to assist with the media element of the cub, helping to increase social presence as well as promoting necessary information. Such information may include promoting upcoming fixtures, ensuring people know the venue and tip-off time, or providing the information needed regarding the club’s numerous basketball camps.
I capture and formulate video highlights for the men’s fixtures and have more recently produced game action photographs, all of which are displayed across social media channels.
When possible, I also control the Instagram account during games to provide a quarter by quarter update for followers via the clubs Instagram story.
I aim to post on varying social media’s in the ‘West Brom way’ ensuring I maintain and promote the family feel to the club.

Have you enjoyed this first season involved with the club?

Yes I definitely have, I started in pre-season as a stranger with my first game being at Nechells, I finished the season at the same place (Nechells) feeling a part of the family.
It was obviously awesome seeing the men’s team win the Clive Hurst Summer League, winning silverware in my first season with the club.
For me, it’s been great as it’s my first taste and experience of local league basketball. It’s been great to see so many other people locally enjoying basketball and without joining West Brom I wouldn’t have known there was such a demand for the sport locally.

What have you made of the team’s first season under coach Tim Rudge?

I think it was a really solid season, I was really impressed with how well and quickly coach Rudge inprinted his style on the team.
I think the team have gone from strength to strength as the season’s progressed, topping it off as Summer League 2019 champions.
Whilst I try to produce media during game days I’m also a fan watching the game, so as a fan I can honestly say I think we’re one of the most entertaining clubs locally.
The energy and pace demanded from coach Rudge every game just makes it a great watch for everyone present.
I think coach Rudge is such an important individual at the club, his experience is priceless. As much as his tactics and game-based coaching helps the players I’ve been able to learn a lot from him myself by working and practising on the skills he regularly promotes such as determination.

How has being part of this team helped you?

It has helped me so much, and in ways people wouldn’t even think or know.
Sure it helps with my CV but it’s helped me so much in terms of my mentality, only a handful of people know this but I suffer hugely with mental health issues. So for me being able to get out and socialise with everyone at the club really helps me with my confidence.
Like I said earlier, before West Brom I didn’t know there was such a huge basketball fan-base local to me but now being involved with the club I have loads of people to talk about my hobbies and interests with, whether that’s that the NBA or basketball trainers.
A lot of the players have been so welcoming and have really made me feel a part of the team.
I just want to take this platform to publicly thank and give a shout out to Liam Sheridan, I told him a few weeks ago about my situation and he’s been nothing but supportive since checking up on me and always trying to get me involved.
As I don’t drive, he’s been helpful throughout the season giving me lifts to different venues. In the summer league there were a few games where he’d drive from Birmingham and drop off myself, and some of his teammates at our front doors, this is just one instance of how he helps people at the club, so without him myself and so many others in the club at different age levels wouldn’t be as involved.
As tacky as it sounds it really is ‘more than a sport’ and ‘more than a club’ because without Liam I don’t know what myself and others would be doing – he really is helping the lives of those in the local community.

Do you expect West Brom to be a success next season?

I don’t want to jinx it but im feeling really good about next season, with a new formation being introduced I think not only the summer league results but more importantly the performances displayed show the direction both men’s teams are going in.
Hopefully we can retain as many players as possible and if there are players with right attitude the right fit to the club then hopefully we can even strengthen both squads as well.
I feel like the club are in such an exciting position, having quality players, willing coaches and volunteers and committed associates to the club.
I think we’re really fortunate to have players in the men’s team that specialise in other area’s that can help the club such as Luke with journalism and Mudie with media.

What sort of work are you hoping to do this coming season? Is there anything special we can expect?

I just want to make sure that the club’s social media channels are at the same level of quality as the performances of teams and services to members. I want to ensure the clubs social presence grows accordingly.
In terms of targets I really want to improve the engagement we get on our Twitter account, so as much as I want to see increased followers and engagement on all social media channels I’ll be trying to especially push Twitter.
I want to try and learn video and photography skills taking me from a complete amateur level to a more respectable level. Hopefully this is something Mudie can continue to help me with as its so great for me to learn from someone as talented in media as him.
Next season I’m hoping to produce more non-game related content that will be posted during the week so followers always have something to see or watch.

Give us your prediction for next season, where do you think we’ll finish?

I don’t see why we can’t win it all.
There was an instance in the Summer League where I was distant from the side-line as I was trying to get some action shots and I could just see the Premier division team on court playing their hearts out and then the rest of the squad and the D2 team going crazy supporting them, that support and family feel really sets us apart from other clubs.
The players are learning and mastering a new style more and more every week and I think having the past season under our belt, with players getting to know each other and understanding how coach wants them to play, really puts us in a strong position to challenge on all fronts next season.

@Luke_Hatfield

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