14,000 people tune in to Mackay coach’s new show
TALES of grand final win benders, the struggles of reaching the professional level, famous accolades and life after footy.
Tye Ingebrigtsen’s new podcast K.I T.I Talk Footy has told some thrilling rugby league tales. And it’s only been three weeks.
The idea sparked between brothers Tye and Kim amid the painful weeks when no footy was on. Searching for a rugby league fix, the duo came up with ways to bring more of the sport they love to people at home.
“Me and my brother have been involved with footy a long time. This is the first time since I was six years old that I’ve had no footy, and my brother is similar,” Tye said.
“We thought here’s a way we can still be part of the game, get some stories out there and give some insight on what it’s like to be a professional athlete.”
The Facebook page is about to reach 15,000 likes and the hosts never expected such a sharp increase in viewership.
“We never thought it would blow up like it did … we’re even getting sponsors on board now,” Tye said.
The internet show has brought on guests like two time NRL premiership winner and recipient of the Clive Churchill and Wally Lewis medal, Robbie O’Davis as well as former NRL players like Kevin Lock, Brett Seymour and several more.
Tye said his favourite interview was with now Super League player, Jordan Rankin, who in 2008, became the youngest player in 72 years to make an NRL debut.
“He’s not as big of a name, but for a kid to play NRL at 16, it was an eye opener to hear about the things he went through,” Tye said.
“That kid was juggling school while playing A-Grade.”
Despite being thousands of kilometres away from one another the hosts bring a relaxed pub chat vibe to the interviews, with one or six beers on the side ready to go.
“We wanted to do things our way, like you go down to the pub to have a beer and you feel relaxed to have a chat with someone about footy,” Tye said.
“Sometimes with the time differences we need to alter things. The other week with Jordan Rankin from England, where it was 8am … he wasn’t cracking a cold one then.”
The live show covers all topics from life off the pitch, to the amazing stories that come with being a professional athlete and stories of glory. But Tye said at the core of the show was a way for the footballers to talk about every aspect of being in the professional environment.
“We’re giving the audience an understanding that these players go through some mental health barriers as well,” he said.
“Luke Capewell said it well, when you hit the high, you’re up there, but when you come crashing down it’s a very low and lonely place in rugby league.
“Arana Taumata said as a footballer it’s hard to buy a house to live in for 10 years. If your contract runs out you could be in Melbourne one year, then Sydney then Brisbane.”
Tye said the expectation to perform had taken a toll in some form on most of the players he had spoken to.
“You have Brett Seymour who was a Mackay junior lad that was sacked by the Brisbane Broncos and had to jump around to a few clubs after.
“Getting dropped from first grade is a big worry. Jordan Rankin signed for a club and was told he would be in a starting spot; he went through preseason and didn’t get it.
“He did not play first grade again until two years down the track.
“These people aren’t living normal lives, they’re in the public eye and one hiccup can crucify their career … so there’s a lot people don’t think about.”
Tye said the podcast had been booked out with interviews for the next three months, with the likes of Todd Carney, Chris Sandow and others on the list.
Ingebrigtsen who is a lifelong Rabbitohs supporter hoped one day he could bring on dream guest John Sutton.
“When the Rabbitohs were going through tough times he was a one man one club. He played all those years with the Rabbitohs.”
The K.I T.I Talk Footy show runs three times a week but will drop to two when the NRL returns to TV.