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Vol. 56, No. 1 • November 2018 • .pdf version
Quinn a big winner in USBWA's best-writing contest
Brendan Quinn of The Athletic placed in four categories in the USBWA's Best-Writing Contest, including first place in spot news/game stories.
Quinn also placed in magazine-length features (third), enterprise reporting (fifth) and moderate-length features (fifth). His winning story was about a critical day in Michigan State's athletic department.
"All of this – from OTL's report, to the facts of past incidents at MSU, to the dark umbrella of (Larry) Nassar's haunting behavior – remains exceedingly difficult to unpack and organize," Quinn wrote. "Lines are blurred in a confluence of controversies. (Tom) Izzo and (Mark) Dantonio have both stood before reporters voicing support for Nassar's survivors, while facing questions lobbed about allegations inside their own programs.
A bizarre incongruity.
"To untangle the mare's nest, one must first understand how all these roads intersected."
Mike Waters of the Syracuse Post-Standard placed in two categories, including first in magazine-length features for a story on former Syracuse assistant Mike Hopkins' new job as head coach at Washington.
The other first-place winners: David Teel of the Newport News Daily Press (column writing), Nicole Auerbach of The Athletic (moderate-length features) and Pat Forde and Pete Thamel of Yahoo Sports (enterprise reporting).
Teel won in column writing for a reflective piece on how Virginia should deal with its historic loss to No. 16 seed UMBC in the NCAA tournament.
"Subtle chances? Of course," Teel wrote. "The best coaches, (Tony) Bennett included, make them frequently. "But a radical departure from the defense-first principles that have fashioned five consecutive NCAA tournament appearances and three outright ACC titles during that span? Uh, no."
Auerbach took first place in moderate-length features for a story on how UMBC coach Ryan Odom and his wife dealt with their son's obsessive compulsive disorder.
"What Odom is doing to revitalize a program that last reached the Tournament in 2008 is impressive," Auerbach wrote. "But what he does just by opening up about his son's mental health challenges can have a far greater impact. 'I don't know why it's so taboo,' Odom says."
Thamel and Forde won the enterprise category for an examination of records that led to an important story about the FBI investigation into college basketball.
Other multiple winners included Nathan Baird of the Lafayette Courier Journal (second for enterprise and fourth for moderate-length features), Jeff Eisenberg of Yahoo Sports (second in moderate-length features and fourth in column writing), Jesse Newell of the Kansas City Star (third in column writing and fourth in enterprise reporting) and Lindsay Schnell of USA Today (fourth in magazine-length features and fourth in moderate-length features). Alex Schiffer of the Kansas City Star took second place in magazine-length features and was part of a team that took third in enterprise reporting.
Game Story/Spot News
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