This fall, a Red Hawk will help decide which college football teams play for the national championship.
Montclair State University associate professor Kelly Whiteside has been named to the College Football Selection Committee – the body responsible for selecting the top 25 NCAA Division I teams in the country and the four teams competing for the national title in the annual College Football Playoff – for a three-year term, the organization announced on January 25.
She joins a group of 12 other members from across the country, including current Division I sports directors, former coaches and former players, and will serve as the sole media member on the committee.
Before joining the Montclair faculty, Whiteside spent 14 years at… USA today as the national college football writer and also specialized in beating the Olympics and the World Cup. She has covered seven Olympics, nine World Cups (men and women), and the NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL, and multiple college sports. She was also the first female president of the Football Writers Association of America. Prior to Participation USA today, she was a reporter at news day and a staff writer at Illustrated Sports.
“I love being a member of the College Football Selection Committee,” said Whiteside. “I’ve spent much of my life studying college sports across the country, and the opportunity to bring that experience into the classroom is exciting. With our new Sports Communication major and our talented and diverse student body, Montclair State should be a destination for any student looking to pursue sports media.”
Whiteside oversees Montclair’s new undergraduate program in Sports Communication, which introduces students to various careers in the ever-changing, fast-paced sports media industry and prepares them as writers, producers, and directors of dynamic media content.
The major delivers hands-on experience in sports media production and storytelling from broadcast content, analytics, play-by-play capabilities, writing on radio and digital news to public relations and social media – done in collaboration with Red Hawk Athletics and broadcast on the university’s own Red Hawk Sports Network.
“Professor Whiteside is an excellent addition to the College Football Playoff Committee, and she will bring years of top expertise and insight to the role,” said Keith Strudler, director of the School of Communication and Media. “Our school and our students are fortunate to have someone of her talent and distinction directing our expanding sports communications program.”
To learn more about Montclair State University’s Sports Communication major, visit the program’s website.