Jeff jacobs quinnipiac’s bill schweizer at peace with his final call sports ctpostchronicle.com yale university school of art

Bill schweizer pulled out of ithaca, N.Y., and headed for the rest of his life. Behind him was quinnipiac’s season-ending 2-0 loss to no. 2 cornell saturday night in the ECAC hockey quarterfinals. Behind him were four distinguished decades behind a microphone, that deep, precise voice saying goodbye.

“quinnipiac put in a much better effort last night,” schweizer said sunday. “the night before (a 9-1 loss) the wheels just fell off the wagon. Cornell is one of the best defensive teams from the goalie on out I’ve seen in my years doing the games.”

When it comes to the games, quinnipiac hockey, men’s and women’s basketball, the words come lush from the voice of the bobcats since 1997. Schweizer is nothing if not one of the most prepared broadcasters in the land.

Yet when it comes to discussing the end of a career that saw him call villanova’s 1985 national basketball championship, report from seven olympics and fill in as the radio voice for the MLB game of the week and the NFL sunday night game, well, he refuses to drone on as unduly wistful.High school

“I think I really resolved myself to the fact that this was going to be my last season, so, yeah, you feel a little nostalgic, but for the most part, I’m really OK with it,” schweizer said. “I’m ready to sit back and enjoy things.”

He talks about how he and his wife will sell their home in madison, move to south carolina and spend retirement golfing and at the beach. He pauses and then bill schweizer says, “no regrets.”

It was in the ’90s when schweizer ran into lou adler. The former news director who had hired him at WCBS in new york was at quinnipiac and looking for someone to teach a course in radio production.

Schweizer had been at CBS radio for 20 years. There were changes, WCBS got bought by westinghouse. Gone were guys like ed ingles and schweizer. Work with CBS radio network would last until 1998, but a little school in hamden with big ideas was looking for a sports presence.Bill schweizer

“quinnipiac was still division II,” schweizer said. “I started teaching and in 1997-98 they asked if I would be interested in doing the games. Here they were playing basketball at burt kahn court, a glorified high school gym, and hockey at northford ice pavilion, a municipal facility.”

“I did the new haven ravens for five years (from 1998 to 2003),” schweizer said. “people would come up to me and go, ‘wow, this must really be a step backward for you.’ I said, no, this is baseball.

“when I taught classes, I’d tell kids if you get an entry-level job and you’re doing high school football your preparation should be the same as if you’re doing the super bowl. That’s always been my philosophy.”

Schweizer carried that philosophy to quinnipiac games. Then the school did something crazy.Bill schweizer it built that beautiful sports center up on the hill and the game changed. Not only did quinnipiac go division I, the hockey team twice went to the frozen four. Women’s basketball made it to the sweet sixteen last year.

Coming out of high school, he had a tryout with the cleveland indians. Schweizer did pretty well. The indians wanted to take another look. When they were in new york, he got to take batting and field practice at yankee stadium.

The indians advised schweizer to go on to college, but they stayed in contact. Midway through his senior year at iona, however, he popped a disc in his back crashing into the catcher. At the end of the season, an indians scout called. Schweizer told him he needed surgery.

“there was a pause and he goes, ‘too bad, we were going to draft you next week,’” schweizer said.High school “he may as well shot me. From a kid on up I wanted to play professional baseball. Just like that the rug was pulled out.”

He majored in english at iona. He didn’t want to teach. He thought about being a sports writer. He knocked on doors. The answer was the same. No experience. No job.

“one day I was reading a sports magazine,” schweizer said, “and there was a full page ad, ‘you too could be a big-time sportscaster.’ it wasn’t the connecticut school of broadcasting but it was similar, a 15-week course. After 10 weeks, I got a job at small station in ellenville, N.Y. The rest is history.”

For a few years, schweizer broadcast uconn football and basketball, started dom perno’s first season. The connecticut radio network got the rights to villanova basketball. So while still working at CBS, he broadcast villanova the 1984-85 season.Bill schweizer yes, that season.

“it was the last year of no shot clock and rollie massimino had a great game plan for georgetown,” schweizer said. “villanova played such a patient game. You kept looking at the stat monitor going, ‘this can’t be right.’”

“I remember sitting in my hotel room the afternoon of the game,” schweizer said, “prepping, psyching myself, ‘don’t sound like an idiot. Don’t sound like some college radio kid yelling and screaming the whole game.’ I kind of talked myself down. I got excited, but it wasn’t something over the roof. Which was good, because what happened was unbelievable.”

So here he was now, pulling out of ithaca after two decades of coordinating sports broadcasts and teaching at quinnipiac, knowing in the back nine of his career he had made such a difference at a small hamden school with big dreams.Bill schweizer

“it was so much fun with my broadcast partners,” he said. “the greatest thing about doing a game with bill mecca is you never know what’s going to come out of his mouth next.”