1. Welcome to SportsJournalists.com, a friendly forum for discussing all things sports and journalism.

    Your voice is missing! You will need to register for a free account to get access to the following site features:
    • Reply to discussions and create your own threads.
    • Access to private conversations with other members.
    • Fewer ads.

    We hope to see you as a part of our community soon!

How would you handle split season awards?

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by Jack Goods, Oct 26, 2020.

  1. Jack Goods

    Jack Goods New Member

    Here in Wisconsin, we have a unique situation this year with fall high school sports. Schools could decide to play fall sports during the fall or push those sports off to a new alternative spring period due to the pandemic. The alternative spring takes place before the regular spring season begins and doesn't offer any postseason, just basically gave schools wary of starting up in September the option to wait while still giving kids a chance to play their sport this year.

    We typically put out an all-area player for every sport, and for football we have a full all-area team that goes three teams deep plus honorable mentions. My question is, especially for football, do we wait to put out these editions until the alternative spring is over or just put it out next month and only include schools who stuck to the fall?

    Only two of our schools opted to push to the spring, so it wouldn't be that big of a change. Complicating the matter is those two schools are two of the three city schools here in Eau Claire, so some of our main bases. One of the teams also has a running back set to play for the Badgers next year. But for most, football will be long in the rearview mirror if we wait until May to honor their kids.
  2. PaperClip529

    PaperClip529 Active Member

    I would continue to publish your all-area team in the fall. If you are short a few schools, maybe you make it two teams + honorable mentions.

    I wouldn't wait until the spring. First off, not too many people are going to remember what happened in the fall so those kids kind of get shafted. There is also not a guarantee that the players you'd put on the all-area team even play this spring (I know that I'd be putting in a call to that RB if I was a Wisconsin coach). The football players in the spring get the short end of the stick, but you can still find a way to honor them separately.
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2020
  3. Batman

    Batman Well-Known Member

    We have two different state associations, for public and private schools, that put us in this situation every year. The private school league plays its girls soccer and softball seasons in the fall, while the public school plays them in the winter and spring, respectively.
    We've always just waited until everyone has played to do the all-county team. There's only one girls' soccer team in our area that plays in the fall, so it's not a huge deal to wait until the end of that season. The softball is a little trickier, but with only four schools it wouldn't make sense to do two separate teams.
    The hard part is making sure you get and stash away your nominations, stats, etc., from the fall season before they're forgotten about. Recency bias can creep in during the spring and you might leave off some worthy players, coaches can change and stats can be lost, all sorts of things can happen.

    I would agree, though, that if only a few of your schools are playing football in the spring, then do that all-area team at the end of the fall season. That is one you need to get out there on time. It sucks for the schools that didn't play, but it is what it is.
  4. TexasVet

    TexasVet Active Member

    That's a tough situation, indeed. Especially since 2 of those three play in the spring. But, you would hope everyone would understand during this weird year — both your readers and advertisers.
  5. Jack Goods

    Jack Goods New Member

    Yeah, to put it into a little better context we cover about 35-40 schools total, so two isn't that big of the pool. But they are both right here in our population center as opposed to the surrounding area, and among our top seven most valuable schools for coverage.

    This is quite a strange year to do any of this: We often rely quite a bit on the all-conference teams, but many leagues have already said they aren't even doing those this year.
  6. 2muchcoffeeman

    2muchcoffeeman Well-Known Member

    At my last stop, we ran the all-district/all-conference/all-state teams. We didn’t try to put our own together, and we were better off for it.
  7. TexasVet

    TexasVet Active Member

    Is there any way possible to tie the Fall 'All-Area' team with a "spring football preview" all in one section? That way it covers all of the teams. Maybe add a disclaimer/editor's note as to why it's done this way, this year.
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2020
Draft saved Draft deleted

Share This Page