Archive for September, 2009

Converging with online media

September 20, 2009

Wow! It’s been a while since I’ve posted anything, but a lot of thing have been going on with the Murray State News, especially the sports desk.

We finally have our staff determined for this year, which means I don’t have to worry about finding and helping contributors. But with an established staff, comes changes to better the sports section.

With the ever-growing popularity of online media and social networking, we have created a twitter account where we post breaking news about Racer athletics. Feel free to follow us at http://twitter.com/MSUNewsSports. (more…)

Another sports media resource

September 15, 2009
IU's National Sports Journalism Center site offers columns from several top journalists.

IU's National Sports Journalism Center site offers columns from several top journalists, along with breaking news and links to other resources.

Indiana University just launched a Web site dedicated to sports media, one of many sites that have started to pop up across the country during the last several years. Think sports journalism is still the toy department? You’ll find programs and minors at dozens of universities across the country – with many more to come. Sports (and its subsequent coverage) reflects who we are in many ways, yielding research in sociology, psychology, economics, business, and mass communications. Anyway, check out the site for IU’s National Sports Journalism Center and see for yourself.

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Life and death in a small Fla. town

September 13, 2009
The Michigan Daily's Andy Reid traveled to Pahokee, Fla., to learn more about the challenges several Wolverine players faced while growing up. Photo/Max Collins Design/Lan Truong

The Michigan Daily's Andy Reid traveled to Pahokee, Fla., to learn more about the challenges several Wolverine players faced while growing up. Photo/Max Collins Design/Lan Truong

Football saves lives in the impoverished town of Pahokee, Fla., which is much farther away from ritzy Palm Beach than a map would show. A town in the midst of sugar cane fields and marshes, Pahokee is also a place that takes lives at an early age. Gangs recruit kids, called ‘jitterbugs,’ to transfer weapons and money around town. As one kids says: “There’s nothing to do here. It’s easy to get into smoking weed, robbing, they even started killing around here.” Yet, it’s also a town that dominates state football, winning five championships over the past six years.

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Great Article from the Alligator today

September 11, 2009

With the help of Google Reader and RSS subscriptions, I probably skim upwards of 50 stories, including topics that are non-sports related, per day. So when I read a feature article from first line to last, it usually means that the story was very good. Such is the case with the Alligator’s weekly Friday feature story on the Florida football team. The writer, Kyle Maistri, who I met last year in a sports reporting class, demonstrates a well-written story with a good lead hook, balance, excellent quotes from multiple sources, great insight of what’s it’s like to compete for a starting position at one of the nation’s most prominent football programs, and a perfect kicker. It’s probably the best story I’ve read from the Alligator this year.

Sports: big business or merely games?

September 10, 2009
Posnanski

Posnanski

Sports Illustrated’s Joe Posnanski streams his conscience on the current state of sports journalism, grappling with the reasons the profession has changed during the past 50-plus years. Are sports business or are they games? And he ponders the role ethics play in sports coverage. A terrific read. The reader responses at the end of this post offer an equally interesting look into how fans think about sports coverage.

More models for online reporting

September 9, 2009
The Roanoke Times used maps, photos, text, video and audio to tell the story of this grueling race across the mountains of western Virginia.

The Roanoke Times used maps, photos, text, video and audio to tell the story of this grueling race across the mountains of western Virginia.

The Roanoke Times did a tremendous job covering the Hellgate 100K race through the mountains of western Virginia. Yes, that’s right – 66 miles. And the course elevates 13,000 feet over the peaks of the Jefferson National Forest. Check this out for some suggestions for covering events on, and around, your campus.

The St. Petersburg Times has a great site set up for covering prep sports that includes results, schedules, features, and recruiting.

Who are the best players on your school’s team, or in the conference? Here’s how the Arizona Daily Star presented a similar package on Arizona State’s football team. The newspaper produced a similar package on the softball team, a perennial national title contender.

The San Diego Tribune posted a history of the Padres uniforms through the years.

Here’s a simple chart you may want to emulate. USA Today chronicles Alex Rodriguez’s milestone home runs, offering a top 10 all-time leader chart to go alongside it as well.

Models for online sports coverage

September 4, 2009
The Columbus Dispatch covers Ohio State like no other online.

The Columbus Dispatch covers Ohio State, a package that should be a model for all team coverage – at any level.

Some more online sports coverage ideas.

Create a preview game package online. That’s what the Columbus Dispatch does for the Ohio State football team, something that should be a model for all sports departments. This package includes a cover story, profiles on players from each team, five keys to winning, rosters, schedules, updated weather reports – and much, much more. Readers dig in as much they would like. (more…)

College newspapers cover Blount ‘meltdown’ well on deadline

September 4, 2009
Oregon's LeGarrette Blount punches Boise State's Byron Hout after Thursday's nationally broadcast football game. College and professional media jumped on this story immediatley.

Oregon's LeGarrette Blount punches Boise State's Byron Hout after Thursday's nationally broadcast football game. College and professional media jumped on this story immediately.

Apologies do not minimize the penalty Oregon running back LaGarrette Blount should receive after punching an opposing player and then trying to attack fans in the stands after the Ducks lost to Boise State 19-8 on Thursday night. Blount had to be restrained and hauled into the locker room by teammates.

Boise State’s The Arbiter did an excellent job covering both the game and the incident online. Oregon’s The Daily Emerald also did a solid job for a late-night game far from campus. Their stories are among those posted below.

Meanwhile, Portland Oregon columnist John Canzano writes that Blount should be kicked off the team.

“The Ducks running back should be arrested and charged with assault today for slugging Hout, who wasn’t even looking. Also, Blount should be served up by first-year head coach Chip Kelly as a reminder of everything the program should never become.

It was cheap. It was embarrassing. It was disgusting.”

Here are some more stories on the game (and Blount): (more…)

Newspapers expand sports coverage beyond games

September 2, 2009
The Indianapolis Star compiled a terrific database for Hoosiers basketball.

The Indianapolis Star compiled a terrific database that offers stats and results from every Indiana University basketball game.

Here is the first in a series of glimpses at how newspapers are expanding sports coverage through new media.

Create a database. The Indianapolis Star compiled every result and stat from every game Indiana University has ever played, something that includes the Hoosiers’ overall record against every team played. You can compile this for any team or sport.

Host live chats with coaches and players where readers can pose questions or follow along. Afterward, post the transcripts of these chats, as the Dallas Morning News does.

Post headlines from stories and blog entries on Twitter, along with a link, to attract more readers. But tweet regularly about breaking news on a regular basis or readers won’t sign up.

Create a guide to something sports related in your area, such as football stadiums, basketball gymnasiums, fishing areas or golf courses. The Boston Globe assembled a guide to the Red Sox’s minor league ballparks, a guide that blends photo, lists and extended cutlines. You might even add audio with each photos – comments from a peanut vendor or a PA announcer, perhaps.

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Sports journalism lacks diversity

September 2, 2009

The number of minorities who run sports organizations is miniscule. The number of minorities who cover sports is also much lower than you’d imagine. You may want to drive over to Indianapolis to check out this workshop on the topic that features several veteran sports journalists – William C. Rhoden, Stephen A. Smith, and Garry D. Howard, among them. If you cannot attend, you can watch the symposium on the Big Ten Network.

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