City of Loretto Press Secretary

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Kent Koch

Kent Koch 11 posed for various photographs as part of a billboard campaign for St. Cloud State.

Kent Koch Kent Koch 

The Husky baseball team stepped into the national media spotlight during the recently completed 2011 season. Although the Huskies put together another successful season on the field, the media's interest was focused on the unique story of senior second baseman and team captain Kent Koch.

A finance major in his final semester at St. Cloud State, Koch was elected mayor of his hometown of Loretto in November 2010. He began his first term as mayor in January 2011, which coincided with the start of the Huskies' first baseball practices for the spring season.

The rare combination of an active college student-athlete holding an elected position caught the attention of local, regional and national media. His first days in office and swearing-in-ceremony at Loretto were covered extensively by Twin Cities' television and radio stations and newspapers along with stories in all the St. Cloud area media outlets.

Koch's first nationwide exposure came with a live interview on ESPN2's First Take program and a feature story in the NCAA's Champion magazine. The hits just kept coming for Koch, who also had his story told on Yahoo. com, NCAA's On Campus, Baseball America, NCAA.com, and MLB.com, the Major League Baseball website. On radio, Koch was featured on National Public Radio's "Morning Edition" and "Only A Game."

The Koch story even piqued the interest of the New York Times. Sports writer Bill Pennington travelled all the way from New York to St. Cloud to cover the story, which resulted in a major feature in the April 23 New York Times. The story proved to be one of the most viewed stories on the New York Times sports section's website that day, collecting more than nine million unique hits.

To get a full view of the impact of this story, just Google "Kent Koch Mayor," and be prepared to spend a good portion of time filtering through the countless media outlets, websites and blogs that have picked up on this amazing St. Cloud State story.

- Story By Tom Nelson | Photographs by Neil Andersen '96

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