Mike Koon has worked in the sports information office since 1998 and is in his eighth season as the publicist for the Illini volleyball team. In addition, he has worked with women's basketball, softball, men's golf, and women's soccer.
An avid writer, Koon's writing and publications have been recognized consistently by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA), including a first in the nation for his biographical piece on former Illini coach Theresa Grentz.
Koon has a passion for voice work and has been using his voice to call sporting events since he was in single digits. A native of Monticello, Ill., Koon was known as the kid who roamed the sidelines doing "play-by-play" into his portable tape recorder and in high school as a play-by-play voice for the Sages' football and basketball teams.
Koon has taken those skills into his career where he has been the public address announcer at Memorial Stadium since 2009. In addition, he has provided voice-overs for video boards at both basketball and football and was the narrator for "Seniors to Remember," a DVD tribute to the Illinois careers of Illini greats Dee Brown and James Augustine. He also has continued radio work as an analyst for Illinois women's basketball games and has served as public address announcer for volleyball and softball games.
Since the inception of the Big Ten Network, Koon has recruited, assigned and evaluated talent for Student U broadcasts of Illini events and served as a liaison for the sports information office with the BTN. He has had an on-air presence on the Fighting Illini Insider show, including hosting the final episode of the 2008-09 season.
Koon graduated from North Central College in Naperville, Ill., in 1993 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in speech communication/broadcasting and was hired as the college's sports information director from 1993-98. He was honored with the Dissinger Award for Administrative Managers in 1995 as the college's staff person of the year.
As a student at North Central, he served as assistant sports director and public relations director for the college's award-winning radio station, WONC, where he was a regular on football and basketball broadcasts. He worked four years in the sports information office while spending three years as the sports editor for the NCC Chronicle.
Koon is actively involved in the community, as a mentor in the CU 1-to-1 mentor program and as a deacon for the First Baptist Church in Savoy.
He and his wife, Samantha, live in Champaign.
Updated October 2011