Zugmaier To Bowl For Lindenwood University, Is An iCAN Clinic Male Athlete of Month For Tigers
EDWARDSVILLE - James Zugmaier, who was one of the top bowlers in his four years with a developing Edwardsville High boys program, has signed a letter of intent to bowl for Lindenwood University in St. Charles, Mo.
Zugmaier, who was one of the first bowlers when the Tigers started out, is looking forward to competing at the next level and will bring a positive attitude to the Lions. For his efforts, Zugmaier is an iCAN Clinic Male Athlete of the Month for the Tigers.
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"For one, just to start off, try to bring a positive attitude, and good work ethic every single day," Zugmaier said in an interview following the ceremony. "But especially with the drier conditions in bowling, I know a lot of kids on that team, I know they have a lot of high-break bowlers. I hope I try to specialize in the drier patterns and help the team out when it comes to that.
Zugmaier, who bowled for head coach Craig Ohlau this past season, decided on Lindenwood based on a visit to one of his tournaments by Lions' head coach Phil Vida.
"Coach Vida came to one of my Gateway tournaments," Zugmaier said, "and in was an invitational, so a bunch of colleges came. And he was talking and I was just kind of listening to him and all of a sudden, he said the broadcasting, where he said the B word," he said with a laugh. "And I'm like 'you've got bowling and broadcasting? I might be just a little interested in it.' When I checked out the campus, I absolutely loved it. I'm all ready to go, I've got my stuff ready and I've got some scholarship money for grades and bowling, so I've gotta go."
Zugmaier, who's very personable with a great sense of humor, also looked at SIU-Edwardsville and Lewis and Clark Community College in Godfrey.
"But after seeing how good Lindenwood can be, for the price and all that," Zugmaier said, "how close it is to home, I mean, I just had to go to it The other ones, Lewis and Clark's really small, SIUE, I like them, but Lindenwood just has more to offer, in my opinion. So I had to go there, especially with the bowling."
Lindenwood has done well in bowling in the past, and has an up-and-coming overall athletic program that recently announced that the entire department would go fully to NCAA DIvision-I and compete in the Ohio Valley Conference.
"Everything's moving up to that next level," Zugmaier said. "The bowling team's been on that next level because college bowling isn't as complicated, there are not as many teams. Just a lot of schools only have girls bowling, but we've been competing against the best, we've done pretty well against them and hopefully, in the next few years, I'm not promising anything, but a national championship. I really appreciate that, so we'll see if we can get it done. But all sports are doing really good right now for Lindenwood."
Zugmaier is planning on majoring in broadcasting at Lindenwood, where the school has a student-run network that broadcasts many of the Lions' games in all sports.
"I look forward to that," Zugmaier said. "They student-run broadcast for all their stuff, except for football. So students will get to learn, and you get to use what you actually learn in the classroom and apply it to some things outside of your normal school day. And I've heard you can get paid to do it as well, so you're not taking much time out of your day for nothing. You're learning something, you're putting that to use and you might be getting paid for it. So, it's pretty awesome, something I'm really looking forward to doing."
As far as aspirations, Zugmaier is leaning towards play-by-play announcing of events but has his options open.
"I wouldn't mind being the guy working in the truck later on," Zugmaier said, "and help running the stream. I've had a lot of experience doing that here; of course, it's way more complicated in the real world with live sports and ten showing camera angles. But I really want to go into announcing. I've just gotta figure out some of the aspects of it. I've really got to enunciate better, and get my wording together. I feel like I have a voice for it, I just want to learn that one there, do a little bit better talking into the microphone, and see where it takes me."
Asked for a favorite memory of bowling for the Tigers, Zugmaier recalled something that he said on a senior night that he felt was very true.
"I said on senior night something really corny, but it's true," Zugmaier said. "It was just the opportunity to go out there with my teammates every single day, try to compete. We were always the underdog, so every match I really enjoyed. You knew you were there coming in, but when you finally won one, it was magical. So I think going to work every day with my teammates, that's one of my favorite memories. I know it's really broad and kind of corny, but I enjoyed it."
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