Bill Macriss worked as a sports writer at the Utah Statesman starting in 1986, and by 1987 was the Utah Statesman sports editor. Currently, Bill works in college athletics by serving as Chief of Strategic Initiatives for the Division of Student Affairs at Sacramento State as well as the Chief of Staff to the Vice President of Student Affairs. His main task lately is “to create a team that supports 58 units,” ranging from marketing and communications strategy, to research assistance and leadership training.

Even with his busy job, Bill still comes to campus every year either to visit his son (who is graduating this spring) or to see how the campus continues to grow. Bill is proud about how USU has matured in all aspects “from an academic side, the field of journalism and the opportunities for current and future students have changed dramatically.” Even with the changes Bill still fondly remembers his time with Student Media.

“I can still remember when I caught the journalism bug once and for all. I was asked if I wanted to cover a Utah Jazz playoff game in 1987. I asked Jay Wamsley, our advisor extraordinaire, what that would entail. The conversation went like this:

‘You’ll drive down to Salt Lake City and we’ll pay for your gas.’


‘You’ll get a free ticket to the game and be fed a meal in a special location before the game at no cost to you.’


‘They’ll give you a seat somewhere at mid court to watch the game, probably a little way up.’


‘You’ll watch the game, then go down to the locker room and ask John Stockton and Karl Malone what they thought about the game.’

‘Uh, Ok.’

‘Then you’ll come back, tell us how the game went, and we’ll pay you. Sound good?’

‘Um, yes, I’m in!’

Needless to say, the sports writer bug has never left.”


Along with the “writer bug” Bill caught the Aggie fever as a student, “I had attended two other universities my first year out of high school (the names have been left out to protect the guilty) but when I stepped on the campus of Utah State it truly felt like I was home.”

Many memories from college have stayed with Bill, one in particular remains a part of his life,

“It is funny the things that stay with you, but one moment from USU in the mid-1980s has stuck with me to this day. In a journalism class taught by the legendary Nelson Wadsworth, we all got to select what beat we wanted to cover for the quarter (not yet semesters back then). We all picked our own beat and I (of course) took sports. At the end of the selection Nelson asked, ‘Doesn’t anyone want to cover water?’ We all stared at Professor Wadsworth the same a dog stars at you when it doesn’t quite understand the sound coming out of your mouth. He said, ‘You will always have a great beat if you cover water, because every year there is either too much or too little, and it is always a story.’ I have shared that gem of advice more times than I can remember…”

Every month we will be doing a spotlight on an alumni who was involved with USU Student Media. If you would like to be featured in an upcoming month or want to nominate someone please email

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