• phil cantor/@osgphil

No, sports reporters aren't cheering for COVID cancellations



There are a lot of things on the internet that (a) make me angry to read and (b) make absolutely no sense. This is one of those things...


For reasons explained only by the past few years in which we live, there seems to be a chorus of people who inexplicably seem to believe that sports journalists are rooting for the respective sports they cover to be cancelled due to the Coronavirus.





Both of these tweets, for a multitude of reasons are some of the more absurd statements of the decade. If for no other reason---the loss of said sport likely would mean loss of employment for said reporter.


  • Ed note: There's no such thing as "The Media". Media is an industry. One that employs thousands upon thousands of individual people working for thousands of different outlets. It is not a collective. A reporter is not "The Media" a reporter is just that, a reporter. Much the same way your accountant doesn't speak for ALL accountants.


It may be hard for some of you to believe, but the role of Sports Reporters is dying, and has been dying for the past decade right before our very eyes. Most newspapers have been on life support for over 10-years, barely able to cover sports. Some local TV affiliates don't even have a full-time sports department, those who do, barely rate a spot in the newscast. Yes, cable sports news is still there, ESPN and FOX Sports still report on sports news, but instead of fostering reporting, they rely largely on opinion shows much like the mind numbing CNN's, FOX News and MSNBC's of the world.


Heck, I worked in a local TV sports department for years. The place I worked went from a 5-person department to one in the span of 90-days in 2009. It freed up 4 newsroom positions for people to do news. Always remember the majority of people who report on sports and other things on the news don't work for the networks or big websites, they work locally.


My point here is this. Stop looking for a cop out people. Stop looking for someone to blame for things you love not happening. I get it, in the current world in which we live, journalists have become easy targets because they don't always report on things you like or agree with.


I cannot begin to describe to any of you how painfully hard it is to see and hear friends you've known most of your life who don't totally understand what you do telling people journalists are the "enemy of the people" and liars (among other horrible things). Yet that is exactly what's now happening.


Don't get me wrong, I can't sit here and tell you every single solitary report is done correctly 100% of the time, because for starters, that's impossible. Mistakes are made. And with smaller and smaller resources and staffing, they'll continue to happen. But mistakes largely happened due to sloppiness, not some nefarious intent to deceive anyone.


I will also tell you there are some who take advantage of their relationships and aren't as critical as they should be sometimes. It does happen. Yes, there are people in sports who are cozy with the teams and people they cover and will make decisions based on the perception of access. Yes, it does happen. I don't agree with it, but it does. It happens in Political reporting too.


Yes, there is a way to be friendly with the people you cover and be fair and objective at the same time. But its a difficult line for some to stay on. If you want to know why your presumption a reporter wants a sport to be cancelled is absurdly stupid, this is your prime example right here.


Like most people, I want to see my sports. I want my MLB, NFL and College Football. But I don't want to see anyone get sick. I want my fall weekends full of sports watching, but I don't want the people playing it to get other people sick. Maybe its an overreaction, maybe it isn't. But like almost every single one of you complaining, I'm not a medical expert. You aren't either and neither of us know what is truly safe or the best way to combat this.


It's all new. We've never gone through ANY of this before. We don't know what is best everyone. We don't know what it takes to continue with the things in life we love to do. Yeah, sure, we can make a best guess. We can try different things to mitigate the problem. But we don't know if they're going to work.


Sure, if you are willing to take the risk, then why not, play. But by accepting that risk, you should be willing to live by the rules in place to keep you from getting sick or getting someone else sick.


Otherwise there's no point. To any of this.


Listen, I'm mostly just getting crap off my chest here, like I said earlier, it makes me crazy to see and hear people taking shots at a profession they know very little about based off the statements of a few odd people on a national level.


Please remember, there was a time, not long ago where we all agreed to disagree about things. We understood that not everyone believed the same or had the same ideals we did.


There was a time we all accepted that as a thing that made us stronger--and better. That our individual differences could make the whole better than the sum of its parts. We could work hard towards finding middle ground.


But sometime in the past few years, that all went out the window. It became either you are with me or you are against me. Period. Now we fight, argue and name call anyone who has a different perspective because we're being told we should. Why?

I understand the need to assign blame for something that you can't control and none of us can control what happens in College Football or any other sport. But to assign blame to a group of people who make a living working within that very field is one of the more absurd presumptions you could ever possibly make.


If you want to blame someone or something for College Football's dilemma, blame the idiots in charge. Blame the Power 5 conferences who can't seem to agree on anything. Blame the college presidents afraid of the liability should something happen. Blame the NCAA who is essentially a toothless figurehead. They are a big part of the problem and the main reason we're having this discussion in the first place.


This is a long way of making a short statement here kids, stop looking for easy scapegoats. There are plenty of people and things to blame for things you don't like, maybe its time to blame the actual people, places or things causing the problem instead of blaming the messenger.

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