Off CameraOff ScreenStarting 5

Off Camera with. . . Alfonso “Poncho” Vera

Poncho Vera (Rodrigo Cruz/ESPN Images)
Poncho Vera (Rodrigo Cruz/ESPN Images)

EDITOR’S NOTE: Welcome to Off Camera with. . . the series on Front Row where we introduce you to some of ESPN’s newest studio anchors and learn a little bit more about what they do when the cameras stop rolling. As #Redes marks its second-year anniversary (Wednesday, noon ET, ESPN Deportes), meet the show’s newest co-host, Alfonso “Poncho” Vera. Poncho joined ESPN in 2012 as host of ESPN Mexico’s morning show “Toque Inicial” and made his move to Bristol last December to join Carolina Guillen, Alfredo Lomeli and Rosana Franco on #Redes.

How did you choose this profession?
I have dreamed about working in media since I was a child. While studying communications in Mexico, I found out about a radio station that was doing auditions to find new talent so I went for it and I got hired.

Do you miss radio?
I love radio, and yes, I miss it. I like its freshness, creativity and its capacity to provide imagination. I’m hoping for a chance to work on ESPN Deportes Radio in the future. While at ESPN in Mexico, I had the opportunity to participate on Futbol Picante’s radio edition.

How have you adapted to your new life in Bristol?
It’s been a great experience, both professionally and personally. It is a very different lifestyle from what my wife Fernanda and I had in Mexico, but we are very grateful to live in a different culture with extraordinary people who have offered their support and friendship.

Favorite sport/team:
If I had to choose a sport, I would definitely choose soccer. My team is Pumas de la UNAM. My father took me to see them when I was four years old, and I have been a fan ever since.

Favorite sports moment:
There are so many but since I mentioned Pumas, I’d have to say the championship they won in the 1990-91 season. The team ended up first in everything during that tournament.

You previously worked as a teacher. Would you like to teach again?
Yes, of course. I know that you can’t do everything in life, but I think there is always time for sharing your experiences with others. I will soon start looking for opportunities to teach in a community service program. I like teaching in the field of Mexican culture, media, and art.

Favorite movie:
“Big Fish” directed by Tim Burton. It’s a very thoughtful and emotional movie.

The best advice you have received:
Always treat others with respect and good will. The world will only change when we learn how to live together in brotherhood and harmony.