Feb. 28, 2017
Without a doubt, Mike Vaccaro has the most recognizable voice in Seahawk Country. As the play-by-play announcer for the Seahawk Digital Network, Vaccaro covers the UNCW men’s basketball and baseball programs with a lot of passion and even more energy.
“There is nothing better than being courtside, or in the press box, for a game with the challenge of describing the action and excitement for the viewer or listener,” said Vaccaro, who has been the “Voice of the Seahawks” for 13 years.
He grew up loving sports, but knew playing professionally was not in his future. He set his sights on becoming a sports broadcaster like his role models Bob Costas, Mike Tirico and Sean McDonough. Like them, Vaccaro attended Syracuse University’s prestigious S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications.
“I’ve always aspired to be like them and follow in their footsteps into sports broadcasting,” he said.
Vaccaro joined UNCW in 2004 as the marketing assistant after six years at Campbell University. Among his fondest memories at the university are the times when he covered CAA championship game victories. In 2006, both the men’s basketball and baseball teams won conference championships that same spring. He has since “called” two more baseball championship game victories, a men’s basketball championship and numerous NCAA appearances for baseball as well as two NCAA appearances for men’s basketball.
“Being a small part of those teams and being around the coaches, players and fans in those moments is extremely rewarding,” Vaccaro said. “As I often tell people, I sound much better when the Seahawks win.”
When Vaccaro isn’t behind the microphone, he is developing marketing strategies to increase support for UNCW athletics. This includes helping create home court and field advantages at UNCW athletic venues by attracting crowds to the games.
Vaccaro enjoys being a part of the momentum behind the surge of excitement and support surrounding the university’s athletics program. “We will continue to grow in ways we can’t even imagine,” he said. “There is so much potential at UNCW. Go Seahawks!”
-- Venita Jenkins