Villanova's Hoops Mania kick-off party has changed a lot over the years as the "midnight madness" traditions across America have turned from simple basketball practice sessions into all-around entertainment experiences. At Villanova, that meant a growing attendance and change of venue, a change of schedule, and the type of high-end entertainment that will make for must-see-television on Fox Sports 1.
Though all of the changes, one thing has remained constant -- the music will be spun by DEEJAY 007 -- who has been the official DJ of the Hoops Mania event since 2000. He's seen all of the changes that took an event that featured a pizza eating contest and basketball scrimmage a decade ago, into the multimedia show that it is today.
"Well I remember when Hoops Mania was still in Jake Nevins Gym which is a much smaller building," DEEJAY 007 says about the job. "I have seen the event add great aspects like major production sound and lighting, big money prizes, local celebrities who are alumni and of course National touring artist who perform a concert at the end."
VUhoops had the opportunity to launch a few questions at the Hoops Mania regular recently. Here were his responses:
What is your favorite part of working at Hoops Mania?
My favorite part of any event that I get to DJ is when I get the word that they want me to DJ and just entertain the audience. DJing is my love, and my passion. So any chance I get to be in front of an audience and entertain them is what gets my really excited. And of course the chance to scream at the top of my lungs "I LOVE MY JOB".
How does DJing at a sporting event differ from working at a bar or club?
Well the biggest difference is probably the music that I play. At a club or bar it's an adult audience so I can play pretty much anything. When doing a sports event it's a family oriented environment. So everything needs to be clean and edited for content. It's a HUGE responsibility as a person who plays to thousands of people to make sure you play appropriate music at sporting events.
Can a DJ get a sports crowd more hyped than a big dunk? How can you supplement the experience?
YES we can!!! As a DJ my goal is not to supplement the excitement but more to complement the excitement and add to the fan experience. There are certain songs that you know are going to get a big response and you want to play those songs when the your team needs a energy boost or it's a close game.
On a scale of 1-10, how much do you love your job?
What types of events have you been a DJ at?
I have DJed all kinds of event from the normal parties, clubs, to sporting events, national tours, concerts, festivals, sporting events and even professional tennis matches.
What was the best moment for you so far?
Its really hard to pick a favorite moment in my career but some of my favorite so far have been being named the official DJ for the professional tennis team the Philadelphia Freedoms; ALL of the Hoop Mania's I have done have been awesome; and being able to DJ at the Unity Day Festival in Philadelphia which draws crowd of upwards of 300,000.
The official DJ of Hoops Mania is on speed dial for Villanova Athletics, it seems. He has also worked the basketball program's "Winter Jam" event, swim meets and other sporting events. While that keeps him busy, he also finds time for clubs, weddings, concerts and just about anywhere else you've seen a DJ.
He owns Untouchable Entertainment Group, a DJ booking and event planning agency that manages both DEEJAY 007 and a roster of other talented DJs that travel the country.