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Do any sports rely on the paper for coverage anymore?

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by BYH, Mar 18, 2007.

  1. BYH

    BYH Active Member

    I was thinking of this tonight...I think after hammer pants unloaded on the unfriendly media relations folks at the NCAA Tournament.

    The Internet, the need for immediate analysis in sports and the ESPNization of sports culture has marginalized the newspaper at major events. Even the best-written columns and stories written on a writer-friendly deadline are likely to be dated by the time the newspaper hits your doorstep. And, of course, access for writers continues to shrink.

    The theory is that local news will still sell newspapers. And smaller-scale sports will provide the access lacking among the major ones. But it seems to me that reduced resources and smaller newsholes have resulted in LESS coverage of these mid-major sports (for lack of a better term). Even small-town papers (cough, JRC, cough cough) can't provide the type of blanket coverage one would expect from a paper concentrating entirely on local coverage.

    If you're a fan of a college hoops team, chances are you read more about the school online. You're getting all your recruiting news online. And if you're a mid-major fan, chances are you get more recaps from the school's official website than the local paper. I would presume this gets more true as the schools get smaller.

    Even the usual "advance" story highlighting an under-the-radar sport/event seems outdated today. It's like craigslist and classified ads: Can't these events and leagues reach a wider potential audience with a website?

    So does any sport rely on the newspaper for coverage anymore?
  2. sartrean

    sartrean Member

    High school soccer moms, and swim parents.

    Yet they aren't getting any coverage either, but they still look in every issue.
  3. crusoes

    crusoes Active Member

    Don't forget the cheer parents. You know, their girls work so hard and cry themselves to sleep when they're not in the paper. That's probably why those Texas cheerleaders get so nuts. It's not acting out. It's a cry for help that not even blowing a quarterback can stifle.
  4. sartrean

    sartrean Member

    Well, a North Carolina cheer program got a lot of coverage....after their faculty sponsor started pimping the girls out to servicemen stationed at Fort Bragg. Wish I had a link.
  5. Taylee

    Taylee Member

    I wish you had the link, too.
  6. SoSueMe

    SoSueMe Active Member

    I think local and "smaller" teams, leagues and sports still sell mid-sized dailies (which is why I feel safe where I'm at: 20K, six high schools, an average university).

    I know my columns are read because there is feedback.

    I know my photos are looked at (a junior hockey player last night said he bought "five copies of last Friday's paper because of the photo" of him).

    BUt I think you're right BYH, any "major" sports' stories can be found online instantly. If you're looking for a gamer, check MLB.com. Columns? Yahoo! AOL, ESPN.com et al. Even major newspapers are now posting stories to the web immediately (we don't do that because we don't have the man power).
  7. expendable

    expendable Well-Known Member

    That link would be useless without pictures.
  8. Overrated

    Overrated Guest

    I wish I was a serviceman stationed at Fort Bragg.
  9. Football_Bat

    Football_Bat Well-Known Member

    I'd rather be a flyboy out of Pope. Flyboys get the quality flange.
  10. leo1

    leo1 Active Member

    they may not rely on the newspaper but they count on the newspaper's web site. the caveat is that it has to be a good site, unlike 95 percent of newspaper sites. for the nebraska cornhusker gymnasitcs fan living in, say, iowa city, he's reading coverage on the nebraska web site but presumably also eating up what little coverage husker gymnastics gets in the omaha or lincoln papers. same goes for football - the fan reads the school's site but also the newspaper. that's what i think, anyway.
  11. Hammer Pants

    Hammer Pants Active Member

    That's a really good question, and I don't think any sport with even moderate popularity does completely need us any more. Part of me gets happy when any of the coaches I cover get pissed at something I write or don't write, because it makes me feel like we still matter. There are times I think we don't, and that sucks. I think we have to work harder than everyone else and really show readers something others can't normally see with our stories to stay relevant. We have to get as much access as we can, and we have to work hard to break news. It seems like any breaking news in print these days is like a game 7 walk-off grand slam.
  12. Jor El

    Jor El Guest

    Not really sure what to make of this. I could argue that if you're at a 20-30K daily that covers around 20 high schools and a large juco or small four-year, they still don't "need" us. I find that the people who really care were at the event anyway. I've been instructed to de-emphasis game coverage and write more feature and enterprise. Nothing wrong with that, because it does make sense considering our situation (understaffed, go figure).
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