For decades, DAC member Ken Woody has been sharing his knowledge of the game – with students, players, FOX viewers, Register Guard readers and the occasional fan passing on the street asking, “Hey, what did you think of the game this week?”
Ken’s latest project, “After Further Review,” is another step in his pursuit of educating football novices and veterans alike. “The game is fascinating but if you watch the ball, you miss most of it,” said Ken.
With a combined 18 years of collegiate football coaching, including at Oregon, Washington, Washington State, Utah State, Whitman College and Washington University-St. Louis, Ken had accumulated a wealth of insider knowledge before he transitioned to TV color commentary. It turned out to be a perfect marriage of his passion for football and his broadcast journalism degree. After four years in Seattle/Tacoma, he found his way back to Eugene on FOX doing color on Oregon replays.
“The commentators on TV don’t always do a good job and I wanted people who watched us to know more. ‘Hey, that was a mistake because of this, and see how he stepped the wrong way here?’ Occasionally you get a commentator who considers himself a teacher,” said Ken. Ken challenged himself to teach his audience every time he stepped in front of the camera.
After 11 years on screen, Ken brought his unique, educational slant to a weekly column for the Register Guard called Xs and Os. “In the column, I talk about the technical part of the game in a simple, understandable way. I preview the game and give the reader something to look for.” In his Wednesday follow-up column, Upon Further Review, Ken gets a chance to dig in deeper on something that happened during the game, getting more technical with his analysis.
With the encouragement of friends, Ken started writing “After Further Review” in April 2016. “The first time I sent my editor, Bob Welch, a portion, he said, I don’t know how to tell you this, but it’s really boring.” No stranger to constructive criticism, Ken went back to work. By December, the book had evolved into a fun and informative read capable of teaching both novice and veteran football fans about the game. “We got feedback that it was interesting without talking down to the reader.”
“After Further Review” is on the bookshelves at local booksellers in Eugene, like J. Michael’s Books on Broadway, as well as online at Amazon.com. If you pick up a copy, there’s a good chance you could even catch Ken in the DAC lobby for a signature.
A member since the 90s, Ken is part of the regular morning crowd during the week. “I like to start my day by coming to the Juice Bar and having a conversation with Diane. I usually give her a bad time,” Ken joked. “But she gives it right back to me.”
Writing the Register Guard column has made a Ken a public figure in Eugene and he welcomes the chance to talk to people in person. “People come up and ask what I think about this and that. For a long time I just answered the questions. The members here are so approachable and friendly. Now when they ask, I start with their name. That’s the first part of making a friend.”