Here we go again?

Michael Keaton utters a lot of great lines in The Paper, doesn’t he?

But no line is better than, “Sometimes you can just smell a horrendously shitty day on the way, can’t you?

Right now, I can relate.

Just wait for it. Some misguided sports columnist from a college paper is going to write a “Kansas City Chiefs fans boo Cassel” column.

Since I lecture that journalists should answer questions in news stories and not ask them, my Reporting for the Media students are beginning to cringe. So I am going to pile on with yet another question. From a movie.

What are you people? On dope?

The betting odds are that the first of these ill-conceived efforts will come from Missouri. But I wouldn’t be surprised if someone from another state tries to take a swipe from a high horse that misses the mark.

I have ESPN. I have The Kansas City Star. I get all I need.

Sam Mellinger of the Star is an excellent columnist. He attends games, practices and pressers at One Arrowhead Drive. I will go with him, if you don’t mind.

Here is an excellent piece by the always-pointed and deadly sharp pencil of Jason Whitlock. Whitlock spent years in Kansas City writing about sports for the Star as a columnist. Now he offers his opinions for Fox Sports. He was at the game. I will go with him if you don’t mind.

No one can — and no one should — be able to cover your college teams better than you. The Maneater at the University of Missouri broke the Dorial Green-Beckham weed bust.  That became a national story — Beckham was a former No. 1 national recruit. But it was a local story, too. And a local story first.

But some 18 to 22-year-old sportswriter will think he can hit the lottery and offer profound insight Mellinger, Whitlock, Hoge or Jaworski can’t give me. And that will suck for him or her, because I’ll likely read the lede and move on.

But you don’t have to believe me. Here is a classic blog entry from Joe Gisondi, a legendary sports journalism educator and former sportswriter. If you don’t believe me, read that. Then find Joe at GO12 and ask him yourself.

And Gisondi is meaner than I am.

“Unfortunately, I read many of these columns while judging sports categories for two state college competitions.

Columnists should be more intrepid than this. Writing columns about local professional teams is just plain dumb.”


“…these columns are usually tossed away by judges and sports editors who won’t award plaques or jobs. Want to impress potential employers? Write a column connected to your junior college’s basketball team or to your university’s track squad – angles that require hard work and imagination.”


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