Myself, my now co-editor Jack MacCool and our good friend Curtis Martin did what any three proper young fellas would do on a Friday night in Kingston, Ont., last March during women’s basketball nationals.
We ordered McDonald’s and drove around the city until the wee hours of the morning.
Maybe you were thinking we went to a bar or the city’s famous nightclub, Stages. But no, all the lore of this year’s Eyeopener sports section begins with the golden arches and some junior chicken sandwich.
MacCool would say he was trapped in his parents’ car until he at least agreed to consider running for sports editor and Martin would probably tell you he’s responsible for selling MacCool on the job, which is hilarious because he doesn’t even work here. So, thanks for the assist, Marty.
But what none of us realized at the time was how that night set the wheels in motion for all the incredible things our team has accomplished since the summer.
Being part of The Eyeopener’s Sports section has given us the freedom to be as great as we are willing and dare to be. The opportunity to push the bar we set for ourselves even higher with every story, even when no one notices.
We’re a year-round operation, which would be impossible without our dedicated team of volunteers who have been churning out content since July 2022. MacCool’s math says that since our first issue of the year, we will have produced 23 pages, 48 print pieces and 173 total stories when things wrap up on April 6.
We’ve gotten to this point together, as a team. Through all the late nights chipping away at stories in the office, having people file copy from other countries and asking them to be in two places at once. There were also many editing sessions and even more classes skipped chasing athletes and coaches around the school.
And even when it may seem like the grass could be greener elsewhere, it’s really all about where you water it.
We’ve watched our rookies, many of whom had never written before, become future pillars of this section and the veterans get better everyday too. Our work wouldn’t be as visually captivating without our dedicated photo team either.
I’ve been writing for The Eye since my first year of journalism school in September 2019 and am about to complete my second year as one of its sports editors. But I think—and I’ll speak for MacCool here too—our final run trumps all the rest and not just because of the number of stories we put out but rather the good memories and better friendships formed through our campus paper.
Now, for our final act, we’re going Beyond The Boxscore. For those that may not know, the boxscore is where you can find stats from a game. It tells part of the story but not nearly the entire thing.
Analytics have their place in sports but we’re not trying to bore anyone with all that hogwash. We’re striving to be more than just “pretty good for a sports story” and highlight the amazing athletes at the university.
Some of them are passionate about the art on their bodies and others are reflecting on the end of their time in the blue and gold. And you’ll read about a student-athlete who is now a parent-student-athlete.
Even if you’re not a sports fan, when you put this issue down there’s a high chance you’ll have enjoyed what you read.
Because that’s what we do best. Make the stories about the university’s great teams and athletes readable for everyone, even if it’s not the first section you’d open the paper for.