Admittedly, this is not coming from an impartial party, but as far as I’m concerned, sports are an indispensable part of any viable newspaper. My experience has shown that readers are just as likely to seek out the sports pages as they are any other section of the paper.
Don’t believe me? Next time you’re at a Starbucks, Barnes & Noble or restaurant where patrons are about to take their dive into print, watch where they turn. I’ll wager you a meal at La Tapatia that at least fifty percent of those readers quickly flip over to the sports.
When presented properly, with stimulating copy and compelling pictures, sports coverage can leap off a page. It’s as if what you’re reading about is again being played out, this time right before your eyes.
You can almost see the sights, feel the ambiance or hear the crowd. On the printed page, sports can come alive like nothing else.
So where are you going with this, man? I ask your indulgence and allow me to explain.
As many of you are aware, this is a re-launch of a venerated brand in the Escondido community, the Times- Advocate. To be sure, a proud entity with a historic past. And with committed new ownership now in place, the promise of an even more vibrant and dynamic publication looms.
And hopefully a lively, wide- ranging and informative sports section will play a key role in helping the T-A to again weave its way into the fabric of the local consciousness.
For the time being, the responsibility of overseeing the sports coverage has fallen on yours truly. This will prove to be a formidable challenge because Escondido is a fertile, expansive and vibrant sports market, with a multitude of high schools to cover and a treasure trove of stories to unearth and research. At first blush, it seems a most daunting undertaking.
It’s not as if we have unlimited manpower or resources. To get this right and to produce a sports section worthy of your interest, we’re going to have to bust tail and be smart. And perhaps most importantly, we’re going to need plenty of help from the community in the form of suggestions, recommendations, journalistic contributions and anything else that will aid us in growing the sports page.
So consider this a clarion call to all those who wish to lend assistance in this enterprise. Got a story idea? Then, please submit it. We will welcome anything that is sports-related. The level of competition makes no difference. Or take some game pictures and pass them along. We will always be in need of action shots that tell a story.
Think you’d like to cover a certain team and submit both game accounts and features? Then, by all means give it a shot. This would be a great opportunity for both experienced and aspiring journalists to get exposure and showcase their talents. And don’t let your age in any way deter you. Young, old or in between, we would greatly value and appreciate your submissions. The desire and willingness to write knows no boundaries.
With the Escondido community actively pitching in and becoming truly invested in what we’re trying to achieve, a sports page of which to be proud will begin taking shape. We’re poised and primed to do our part. We hope the public sector feels likewise.
It is my earnest hope that our future efforts will meet with your approval and that there will come a time when checking out the T-A sports page will become part of your regular reading routine. That’s our goal and we will be diligent in that pursuit. We’re just now unlimbering at the starting line. We look forward to the testing race ahead.
Please feel free to contact me, Jim Tal Evans, at either of the following: 760-359-5451 or Sports@Times-Advocate.com.