By: Andrew Scarpaci, Sports Editor
Adam Rubin, a household name in the sports media world, joins LIU Athletics as the new Associate Athletic Director for Media Relations.
Rubin has a background in journalism, covering the Mets as a writer for ESPN and the Daily News. Rubin also has experience in college athletics as the head of the communications departments at NYIT and Stonybrook University.
Rubin looks to bring his experiences from the sports and media world to rebrand LIU’s public relations to match the quality seen at top-tier Division I universities across the country.
Rubin explains why this position is a perfect fit for him.
“I wanted to be in athletic communications since late in my sports reporting career, and I’m a native Long Islander, so obviously LIU is one of the premier universities on Long Island for athletics,” he said. “It was immediately attractive, and I was familiar with it because when I first got into athletic communications, I had been right down the block at NYIT, which subsequently dropped its athletic program but certainly having been in the same conference with LIU Post I was well acquainted with the school.”
Rubin believes being adaptable to the changing industry is key to success in the world of sports and media.
“Athletic communications has evolved a lot since my days in college. It used to be primarily about pitching stories to the media, doing game notes and writing press releases. Over time, because of social media and just other technology changes, it’s obviously evolved where we reach our audience ourselves as content creators. Someone who came up through a content creation background is well suited for the role, and that’s what I’ve done my whole life. I was a sports reporter for the bulk of my career,” he said. “At the beginning, I was just a print reporter at a newspaper, but everyone in journalism had to evolve over time to get multimedia skills, so I got a lot of photography and video skills, and I think that makes it conducive to the current job of creating content nonstop.”
Rubin feels this level of direct involvement with the teams he works with is more rewarding than a reporter.
“It’s the big difference between working for an independent media source, like when I worked for the New York Daily News or ESPN, versus when I worked for LIU or other colleges. You’re the in-house content creator, so obviously, you’re going to skew a little more positive. You’re part of it, which is nice compared to when I was covering the Mets in 2015, and they go to the World Series,” he said. “When the baseball team here goes to an NCAA regional, yes, you’re not on the field, but you’re a part of that whole team versus just covering something as an independent media where you’re traveling separately. You just show up to the ballpark to interview people and kind of disappear.”
Rubin reflects on his first spring season with the university and the anticipation of what will come.
“I got to see the men’s lacrosse team at Saint Joseph’s, one goal loss to a 19th-ranked team. I got to see the baseball team at the tail end of the regular season and then the success in the NEC Tournament and the trip to the regional,” he said. “I was fortunate that it was eventful and high-end stuff right off the bat. It was good that I got a taste of how things have operated at LIU so that now we recalibrate and have a better feeling going into the fall and know what kinds of things we need to adjust to continue to raise the level of our production.”
Rubin feels he has a tremendous relationship with all the student-athletes and coaching staffs he’s worked with and hopes to continue that path.
“I’m still getting to know everybody, there are 900 plus student-athletes. The team I was always around the most for obvious reasons was the baseball team because they played longer than everybody. I was around them, I got to go on trips with them, and the rapport was great. I think they respected my background in communications, and obviously, having been a baseball reporter for the bulk of my career, I think resonated with them,” he said. “There are a couple of guys on the team who I actually already knew. EJ Exposito was at NYIT with me, and we overlapped a little bit there. Shane Tucker was actually an NYIT signee, I had left by the time he arrived, but I was part of his recruiting trip and showed him what we were doing there, even at a D2 school in terms of our athletic communications products. He remembered, and we reconnected now.”
Most importantly, Rubin’s primary focus is the quality and capture of the athletic broadcasts.
“Our goals are to be high-end content creators. We want to look as close as we can to a Power Five school’s product, and I think we’re going to get very close even this upcoming year: number one, the game broadcast. I want to do four-plus camera broadcasts across the board, not just for what someone might perceive as a premier sport. Every sport should get treated equally and high-end, whether we wanna stream every tennis match, we’re making plans to stream cross country meets on campus, we want to have high-end broadcasts,” he said. “In terms of social media, we want to have different social media for all our teams, a lot of it photography based, plus micing up players and things like that, and then we want to be really good storytellers. We want to be able to feature our student-athletes both in video form and in print form on the website.”
Lastly, Rubin wants to use his experience to attract the worldwide leader in sports to cover more LIU teams and games.
“One of our big goals too is to ultimately and hopefully it’ll happen sooner than later with some of our sports getting on the ESPN platform for streaming as opposed to exclusively NEC front row,” he said. “So we have a lot of plans. It’s going to be a multi-step process, but I think we demonstrated that we were serious about making progress, and I think people are going to see huge leaps forward this upcoming academic year.”