New radio show fills void of fall sports


Pulled from SDSU Athletics

Sydney Smith, Sports Reporter (She/her)

While fans may be waiting for Jackrabbit athletes to return to the field or court for some action, they can also turn to Tyler Meriam for updates on Jackrabbit alumni.

“Keeping Up with the Jackrabbits” is a weekly radio show hosted by the associate athletic director for media where he interviews former or current people who have been a part of South Dakota State University’s athletic department.

The idea for the show came during a time when any and all sporting events were barred from happening, leaving fans without their usual Jackrabbit sports.

“We in the athletic department wanted to do something when the pandemic started,” Meriam said. “We were constantly looking for different ideas and ways to get the word out about Jackrabbit athletics and keep our fans in tune.”

That’s how the idea for the “brief little 10-minute interviews” with Jackrabbit alumni, athletes and coaches came about.

“This became a way to get something out there that wasn’t specific to a game result or event, so it was just an easy way for us to hopefully bring a smile to somebody’s face, but more importantly catch up,” Meriam said.

Since its start, “Keeping Up with the Jackrabbits” has seen guests like head golf coach Casey VanDamme, former women’s basketball player Macy Miller and strength and conditioning assistant Andre McIntyre.

Having conversations with people from the athletic program, whether former or current and from all parts of the department, is something that the host really enjoys most.

“It’s a chance to talk to them in a different light. Sometimes … you know somebody, but you’re talking more about the business at hand and schedules or upcoming events,” Meriam said. “But now, here’s an opportunity to catch up in a different light and maybe learn something you normally wouldn’t have.”

Meriam added that it’s been interesting to talk to people from all “different walks of Jackrabbit life” on the show, and there are more members of the department that he has in mind to have on the show if they agree to do so.

Though the show originally started as something to fill the blank space that COVID-19 left in the sporting world, Jackrabbit fans may be able to look forward to it becoming a regular thing.

   “We haven’t had any huge discussions about it as far as once we get back into it [sporting events], but I think for the time being we’re going to keep doing it,” Meriam said. “If nothing else, it allows us, because of the broad nature of it, to talk to anybody from any sport that’s played or coached. There really are infinite possibilities.” 

   Meriam said that the show has gotten a lot of positive responses and is definitely something that they could continue to do even when sports do return. 

   “It’s a nice simple deal; it’s not a long form interview, so on social media it pops right up, and people seem to enjoy it,” he said. “So, we’re going to keep on keeping on.”

   To check out the most recent “Keeping Up with the Jackrabbits” episode featuring women’s basketball associate head coach Mike Jewett, head to or @GoJacksSDSU on Twitter for the latest and previous shows.