For anyone who knows me even a little bit, it’s no secret that my Achilles’ Heel in terms of both trivial knowledge and general interest is the wide world of sports. Typically this translates into the mistaken belief that i for some reason or another hate athletic competitions and the people who participate in them. Maybe it’s the strong reek of nerdity that pervades the aura i travel with. Or it could have something to do with my single tale of sports past (hint: the crux of the story is my ignorance of the switching of baskets at halftime in basketball and the solitary shot i made that season).
All that aside, while it’s true that my attentiveness to sports is essentially negligible, nevertheless i can appreciate the talent and skill involved in any athletic endeavor. In fact, if your notion of sports is open enough to include stuff like skateboarding and Muay Thai, then you could say i was a sports enthusiast for most of my childhood and teenage years. To this day, i’m still a big fan of the man who inspired me to don my first gi, the incomparable JCVD. [side note: the man’s first comedy film releases soon. Also, 2013’s ‘Enemies Closer‘ is worth a viewing]
The childhood friend who trained in Muay Thai with me and i used to dream of having underground fights. We also tortured our legs trying to do epic splits.
So. With my brief history of sports out of the way, what is the relevance to me now in 2014, when my glory days of kickboxing in Tangiers restaurant in Akron are a more than a couple of decades behind me? Believe it or not, for this spring semester i am proud to say i have the honor of being the sports editor for The Cauldron – Cleveland State University’s weekly student newspaper, student produced since 1929. Now before the tumblers in your mind start falling into place and leave you wondering why in the world i’m in this position, i’ll tell you the same thing i said during my interview for the job: i didn’t know anything about university politics or administration, or even campus life really, when i was chosen as editor-in-chief of the Cleveland Stater this past fall. A story’s a story’s a story, and any reporter or editor worth their salt should be able to handle at least the basics of a beat.
Fortunately for me, i stepped into the more-than-capable shoes of Jaclyn Seymour, who had an internship opportunity to explore. Thanks to her hard work, i transitioned into the role pretty easily (except for my usual neurotic approach to things that involves worry and self-doubt). And one of the most relieving aspects to taking on the challenge was the support of the contacts she’d developed of student reporters eager to write, to get their names out there and bring the university community great coverage of games, spotlight looks at the people who drive Viking athletics and any news that develops around them.
Last week, the first edition that i was involved with hit the campus newsstands. My sports section isn’t the largest in the paper, but i am proud of the work that was done and i’m looking forward to helping shape and deliver terrific stories each week. Our editor-in-chief continues to innovate and improve our interaction with our audience and we’re hoping to watch that audience blossom. It is my hope that people will bookmark The Cauldron homepage, like on on Facebook, follow us on Twitter and pick up the paper every Tuesday around campus.
Here are the links to last week’s sports stories. The first is by Tim Haut, a devoted fan of CSU basketball and a journalism student aiming to make it to the big time: ESPN. Be sure to follow him on Twitter @TimHaut13 for live tweets of Viking basketball too.
Dan Menningen is another great writer who likes to explore sports stories that aren’t often in the spotlight. Last week he had a great interview with legendary swimming and diving coach Wally Morton. There’s a number of other projects he’s working on that i’m really excited about as well.
And finally, i snuck a story in there as well. CSU men’s and women’s basketball has a great event series called the Hoops Luncheon. Our own head coaches talk to fans and also, the coaches from the Vikings’ opponents in the Horizon League that week have a chance to speak as well. They’re a great way to get a deeper look into the games and the psyche of the players and coaches.