A shot at stardom

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East coast native Gus Margiotta excels on the field and in the radio booth.

Gus Margiotta was the hometown hero of Gloucester, Massachusetts – a small seaport city where successive generations of tough fishermen continue to contribute to the town’s blue-collar reputation. As one of the best track stars to ever come out of the city, Margiotta was cut from the same cloth as his predecessors, and his prolific success granted him his choice of East Coast Division-I programs after high school.

Margiotta, a senior journalism major with aspirations for sports talk radio, was originally recruited by the university as a student-athlete specializing in throwing, which includes field events like the discus, shot put, and hammer throw. He originally started throwing in middle school as a complement to track, where he participated as a sprinter in the 100 and 200 meter dash events.

Northern Arizona University was the only program west of the Mississippi that Margiotta visited, and that’s all it took—he says that he instantly fell in love with Flagstaff.

“I loved everything I saw, whether it was the coaching opportunities or the facilities,” Margiotta says. “The School of Communication was a huge pull for me. Everything fit together perfectly, and had something the schools back home didn’t have.”

To top it all off, Margiotta was recently selected for All Big Sky Conference Academic Honors – a testament to his hard work and dedication both on the field and in the classroom.

For Margiotta, however, it was just the beginning.

A perfect fit

Margiotta’s experiences as a student confirmed his first impressions of the university. He was especially impressed by the dedication and sincerity of his professors, citing Angele Anderfuren and Dale Hoskins as two influential faculty members due to their commitment and willingness to go the extra mile for their students. 

“The professors here have been amazing,” Margiotta says.  “Out of everything I’ve been doing here, their ability to go above and beyond to help me learn is one of the most amazing things I’ve seen.”

Margiotta says this positive interaction in the classroom, along with the support of the assistant track and field coach Oscar Duncan, have helped him with his long term goals of becoming a radio show host and throwing coach. Margiotta says their influence, and his work in the Student Media Center, which provided him hands-on experience with tools in the field, have facilitated his goals of becoming a successful personality on the air.  

Opportunities for growth

Making time for academics means Margiotta has to spend the majority of his weekends focusing on his school work in order to accommodate his athletic commitments throughout the week.  However, Margiotta explains he wouldn’t change anything; being involved in university athletics has enabled him to grow and mature, both as a student-athlete and a person.

“A lot of people think of the Big Sky conference as small, but in the grander scheme of things, we compete against the Pacific 12, the Western Athletic Conference, and programs with athletes winning national championships,” Marigotta says. “It’s humbling, and it gives you that growing experience as a student-athlete.”