Sports Columns

Column: The Top 10 Nick Schultzisms: Beloved Characteristics of the Phoenix’s Former Sports Editor

Emily Rosca | The PhoenixNick Schultz has been a member of The Phoenix since he was a first-year and has created many memories with members of the staff.

After working with former Sports Editor Nick Schultz for the past three years, Sports Editors Kyle Brown and Abby Schnable wanted to honor his legacy by revealing some of their favorite Nick Schultz characteristics — which they have lovingly dubbed “Schultzisms.”


Nick has an irrational hatred for tomatoes. That’s just one aspect of Nick’s interesting food palette. Other unique Schultz-isms include basically injecting Dr. Pepper into his bloodstream with an IV and carrying around salt packets because who knows when something needs a little extra sodium. However, his Chipotle order really takes the cake. This man has the audacity to order a “three-pointer.” It’s a burrito with steak and cheese. No, it’s not heated like a quesadilla. 

Stephen A. Smith

Nick is almost always ready at a moment’s notice with a Stephen A. Smith reaction video. Sure, it’s the same five videos over and over, but they have a sweet spot in our hearts. We’ve gotten so good at expecting these videos that now we know which ones he’ll send before he even does.

Faulty Soccer Knowledge

Although Nick was the sports editor for two years and assistant sports editor for one, a sport where he lacked expertise in was soccer — and he’ll admit it too. Some of our favorite moments are explaining to Nick various soccer calls while sitting in the stands of Loyola Soccer Park. His knowledge of the sport did improve over the years, but he always yielded to one of us when it came to soccer. We all thought it was a beautiful moment when he won the Illinois College Press Association award for Game Story from the men’s soccer Missouri Valley Conference match. Even he couldn’t believe he won for a soccer article. 


One of the ways we keep our spirits up during the long production nights is with music. Usually someone would fire up Spotify and select a playlist or two and we’d jam. Occasionally there were requests thrown out. Since he’s usually the first person in the newsroom, Nick took charge of this many nights. He’d fire up his Apple Music, scroll through his library and select what usually ended up being the oldest album on there. Most of the time it predated even our faculty advisors. Everyone in the newsroom would usually complain, question and roast him for his taste in “old people music.” If it was a good day, he’d feature some 2000s throwbacks, so it wasn’t all bad. 

“Free Throws Are Free!”

If you’ve ever been near Nick for a basketball game, or simply follow him on Twitter, you’ll know about his trademarked phrase “Free Throws Are Free.” It’s usually tossed around when a team is struggling from a lack of free throw success — which happened a lot this past year — and is accompanied by his low-rate graphic he drew in his reporter’s notebook. 

Love-Hate Relationship with Dwight, Illinois

As a middle-nowhere Illinois native, Nick is very open about his opinions of small town life. He’ll usually talk about how he’s planning on never moving back. If someone who isn’t from a small town bashes the lifestyle, he’s the first person to defend it. Nick often talks about the only thing his hometown — Dwight, Illinois — has is a McDonalds, which he’s very proud of. He’s also been vocal about the singular bar since he’s turned 21. Note that the bar is in a bowling alley. As much as he says he doesn’t want to reside in Dwight, he’ll likely never leave.

Criticism of Chicago Sports

Nick is a suffering Chicago sports fan. If you ever read one of his Nick Knacks columns, you got a glimpse into the mind of a depressed Bears/Bulls/Cubs fan. There were times when Nick would get a false sense of hope about the Bears before crashing back to reality a week later when Bears quarterback Mitch Trubisky inevitably disappointed. Nick could also be seen lamenting about the Bulls trainwreck of an organization or the Cubs refusing to air their games on anything other than Marquee Sports Network.

Poster Child for NBC Sports

During the fall semester, Nick interned at NBC Sports Chicago. Oh boy was he proud of it, and rightfully so. He made a lot of great connections and gained valuable experience. But wow, Nick quite literally dressed like a mannequin in the NBC Sports gift shop. He had an NBC Sports-branded quarter-zip, sunglasses, hat, water bottle and pen. Nick, we are very sorry if we left off one of your precious NBC Sports keepsakes. 

Bad Hot Takes

If there was an award for the worst takes a person could have, it would go to Nick. He comes up with the wildest opinions on things and stands his ground no matter how many times a person offers a good argument. Some of our personal favorites include: Cameron Krutwig will be the player of the year, DePaul is the only hope for Chicago sports and Mitch Tibusky will prevail. His columns and opinions only seem to get worse as they age. 

Mr. Miyagi of Tweets

There might not be a person more active on Twitter than Nick. If you follow Nick, It’s almost impossible to scroll through your feed and not see a tweet he posted, liked or replied to. He’s the go-to Twitter expert on staff — even more than our social media manager. Much like Mr. Miyagi passes his karate wisdom of karate to Daniel (we’re talking about the superior Jaden Smith one, not the Ralph Macchio one) Nick passes on his Twitter wisdom to his disciples.

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