Today’s #MediaMonday comes to us from Arizona Republic sports columnist Scott Bordow.
In addition to his regular columns, you can often hear Scott filling-in as a guest host on some of the Valley’s sports talk radio shows.
So,Scott, time to share!
What do you want to tell the blogosphere about yourself today?
Well, let’s see. I’ve been at the Republic since January of 2010. For the 28 years before that I was at the Mesa Tribune/East Valley Tribune and since 1996 had been the lead sports columnist at the paper.
I’m fortunate. I knew I wanted to be a sportswriter when I was 10-years-old, and I’ve managed to make a career out of my first love. (My sportswriter career started when I was in Little League and found out I couldn’t hit a curveball).
I went to Thunderbird High School in Phoenix, then ASU, where I earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism, and got a job at the Tribune right out of college. I’ve covered virtually every major sporting event in the U.S., from the Super Bowl to the Final Four to the 2001 World Series between the Diamondbacks and Yankees.
When the Tribune underwent a dramatic reduction in staff in 2010 I was going to be laid off. Fortunately, the Republic called and offered me a job as their high school columnist. Essentially, they created a job for me, for which I’m grateful.
Covering high schools is far different than covering colleges and pros. Surprisingly, fans are even more emotional about their schools than they are their pro teams, clearly because their kids are involved.
My job is to cover the culture of high school sports, whether it’s school shopping, recruiting, unethical practices, etc. But, I’m not just poking at the bear. I also try to find good human interest stories, whether it’s the football coach at tiny Joseph City winning 15 state championships or the football program at Nogales thriving despite all the disadvantages of being on the border.
As a sports columnist, I’ve learned to develop a thick skin. I’m paid to give my opinion and often folks don’t like what I have to say about their team, their program or their coach. But as long as I’m not taking cheap shots and I truly believe in what I’m saying, I’m doing my job. A journalism professor once told me I’m not doing my job unless I tick somebody often occasionally, and he’s absolutely right.
I’m not sure how much longer I’ll be doing this. The newspaper business, as everyone knows, isn’t thriving these days. But I still enjoy going out and covering events, traveling – although I don’t do it nearly as much as I did – and pursuing important stories.
I’m 51, married for nearly 20 years with two kids, but the thrill of getting a scoop still gets the blood pumping. I guess I’m what old-time newspaper folk used to call an ink-stained wretch.