Van W. Stoutt
While in college, first at Bradley University and then at Ole Miss, Van’s passion was to become a professional baseball player [pitcher] but when his curve didn’t curve enough and his fastball was cannon fodder it became painfully obvious he would have to pursue another field. That happened to be public speaking…he found his true passion was going in front of an audience and that led to a career in TV as a sportscaster. Van came to Madison in August of 1976 as Sports Director for WISC-TV. From that time ‘til March of 1995, one of his most memorable moments to cover was the final round at the 1985 U.S. Open won by Madison’s Andy North. During the memorable 1993 Wisconsin football season that saw the Badgers go to their first Rose Bowl since 1963, Van traveled to Tokyo as Barry Alvarez’s team played for the right to go to Pasadena. From hosting coaches shows in UW Football and UW Basketball for well over 10 years, 20+ years as the TV voice for UW Football and Basketball for Wisconsin Public Television, Van also had the good fortune to cover other unique sporting events such as PGA Championships, The Greater Milwaukee Open, the Frozen Four in college hockey, the Final Four in college hoops and countless high school football, basketball and hockey games.
Prior to Madison, Van was sports director at KTHV in Little Rock where he covered the Arkansas Razorbacks under the legendary Frank Broyles and traveled to the 1976 Cotton Bowl.
From Eric Heiden to Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus, Herschel Walker, Ron Dayne, Julius Erving, Bob Knight, Bart Starr, Bill Russell, Kathy Whitworth, Beth Heiden, Woody Hayes, Bo Schembechler, Van has had the great fortune to interview notables such as those plus thousands of others that while they didn’t occupy center stage they still contributed in their own way to the world of sports.
For the last 2+ decades, Van has still maintained his long standing association with the media as an Account Executive for iHeart Radio in Madison. Throughout his stay in Madison there has been one constant, his love for the game of golf, if possible much to the chagrin of his wife Rachelle, he would play every day and never tire of the sport or the competition. At the tender age of 65, so far his get up and go has not got up and went and the hope is it will be awhile before that happens! In addition to his full time endeavor, Van has still found time to co-host with Derek Schnarr a local TV golf show that is a charitable donation to the Balance and Believe foundation and this program allows both to interject their love for the game as well as hopefully provide some humor to a sport that can also be very frustrating to those with even the best of ability.