Jackson began with the Appalachian Sports Network as a senior intern while an undergraduate student at Appalachian, filling the roles of football sideline reporter and men’s basketball color analyst and chief statistician during his time as a student intern. Jackson took over the play-by-play reins in February 2000 and followed the men’s basketball team to an NCAA Tournament appearance. Upon his graduation from Appalachian State in 2000, he was named full-time director of external operations. He was promoted to associate athletics director for broadcast operations in December 2004.
Born in Carbondale, Ill. and raised in Greensboro, N.C., Jackson also worked as a student assistant in the Appalachian State sports information office from 1996-2000 and spent the summer of 1999 as a broadcast communications intern with the Winston-Salem Warthogs, Class A affiliate of the Chicago White Sox.
In addition to his football, men’s basketball and baseball play-by-play duties for the Appalachian IMG Sports Network, Jackson, 36, is the host of Always Attack: Inside Appalachian State Football and Mountaineer Basketball with Jim Fox (Appalachian State’s weekly football and basketball television coaches’ shows). He has serves as an occasional guest host for the David Glenn Show, a sports talk radio show that airs on daily on stations across North Carolina, and also previously served as the play-by-play voice of the Southern Conference men’s basketball and baseball championships for the Southern Conference Sports Network.
Jackson’s peers in the National Sportscasters and Sportswriters Association (NSSA) have tabbed him as the North Carolina Sportscaster of the Year in 2007 and 2012. In 2010, Jackson was appointed to the NSSA’s National Board of Directors, joining prominent media personalities such as Chris Berman, Marty Brennaman, Keith Jackson, Jim Nantz, Rick Reilly, Bob Ryan and George Vecsey during his five-year stint on the prestigious panel.
Jackson resides in Boone with his wife, Leila, and daughters, Maren and Louisa.
Legendary Mountaineer quarterback Steve Brown returns to the booth in 2014 for his 17th season as a member of Appalachian State’s football broadcast crew, providing color commentary for selected games. Brown began his second stint with Mountaineer football broadcasts in 2004, serving as sideline reporter for a season before returning to the booth a year later. No stranger to the airwaves, Brown also served as color analyst for Appalachian football from 1992-97. A 1982 Appalachian graduate, Brown was a two-time all-Southern Conference honoree. Prior to the record-setting careers of Richie Williams, Armanti Edwards, DeAndre Presley and Jamal Londry-Jackson, Brown held the vast majority of Appalachian State’s passing and total-offense records. Employed as a Territory Sales Representative for ASC Volvo Construction Equipment in Arden, N.C., Brown resides in Weaverville, N.C. with his wife, Teresa, and has two children: Christopher and Hannah, a junior at UNC Wilmington.
Lanny Ford joins the Appalachian IMG Sports Network football crew in 2014 and serves as the color analyst for selected games. Ford is the general manager of Appalachian IMG Sports Network affiliate ESPN 730 AM in Charlotte. In addition to providing in-game analysis, he also hosts a live, on-site pregame show on ESPN 730 prior to the beginning of the Appalachian IMG Sports Network’s coverage of every Appalachian State football game. A 19-year sports radio veteran, Ford played football at Clemson before earning a bachelor’s degree from Lenoir-Rhyne and a master’s from Appalachian State. He and his wife, Kim, reside in Lincolnton, N.C.
Patrolling the sidelines for the Appalachian IMG Sports Network is broadcasting veteran Randy Jackson, who returns for his ninth season with the broadcast crew. A television personality in North Carolina’s Triad market for more than 20 years, Jackson made his return to collegiate athletics in 2006. He possesses a strong knowledge of college athletics, having served as the radio voice of Southern Illinois University athletics in the 1970s and in various capacities for Appalachian State broadcasts over the course of the past decade-plus. Jackson resides in Greensboro where he is a licensed continuing education instructor for the North Carolina Department of Insurance. He regularly teaches classes on a wide variety of weather-related topics and their effects on the insurance industry.
Molly Cotten is in her first season as the Carolina Ford Dealers Scoreboard host for Appalachian IMG Sports Network football broadcasts. A senior at Appalachian State, Cotten has served a variety of roles in four years with the Appalachian IMG Sports Network, including as the play-by-play announcer for Mountaineer women’s basketball, volleyball and softball and as a pre-, post- and in-game producer for Appalachian State football, men’s basketball and baseball broadcasts. She has also interned at Appalachian IMG Sports Network affiliate ESPN 730 AM in Charlotte. The Mooresville, N.C. native graduated from Lake Norman High School in 2011.
Steve Zushin is in his second season as the Appalachian IMG Sports Network’s on-site engineer. An Akron, Ohio native, Zushin studied at the University of Akron and Ohio Center for Broadcasting and has worked for more than a decade on both sides of the mic. In addition to his work with the Mountaineers, Zushin is a member of the popular morning show, “The Moo Krew with Crockett and Z” on Kicks 103.3 FM in Lenoir. He also serves as assistant program director for the Foothills Radio Group. He and his wife, Kellie, reside in Granite Falls with their daughter, Alice.
Tige Darner returns in 2014-15 for his 16th campaign providing color commentary for all home men's basketball games. A four-year letterwinner for the Mountaineers, Darner helped lead the 1997-98 team to the SoCon North Division championship his senior season.
Jim Morris is in his seventh season as color analyst for Mountaineer Baseball. Morris served as Appalachian’s head coach from 1974-98, compiling a 611-475-1 overall record in his 25 seasons at the helm. He led the Mountaineers to five Southern Conference championships and two of ASU’s three all-time NCAA postseason appearances in 1984 and ‘86. His 1984 squad led the nation in regular-season winning percentage (35-5) and the ‘86 Apps were the first team in SoCon history to earn an at-large bid to the NCAA Regionals.
During his 25-year tenure, Morris coached six all-Americans, five SoCon Players of the Year, one SoCon Pitcher of the Year and three SoCon Freshmen of the Year and was named the 1984 SoCon Coach of the Year. Appalachian baseball retired his No. 41 jersey on Oct. 11, 1998.