RI High School Sports Coverage Fall 2022 Newspaper Game Stories, Features
When it comes to covering Rhode Island high school sports, no one will be better than The Providence Journal this fall.
I say it because I believe in it. As the athletes compete on their respective fields, I do the same trying to provide high school coverage in a way the state has never seen.
To say last year was crazy would be an understatement. “The Ruebellion” started out as a joke, a silly phrase for me to try to get readers as excited about my cover as I was bringing it. It became something else.
People signed on to “subscribe, subscribe, subscribe” and flocked to the Journal’s website to read coverage of whatever sport we were covering that day. Since previews began throughout the year, it was amazing to hear from readers who really enjoyed the content we provided.
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It would be easy to rest on our laurels and go back. But that’s not a good idea and, in fact, that’s why newspapers are in the dire situation they’re in now – they’ve gotten fat and happy.
As long as I’m both, I’m not going to just do the same things we did last year. It must be better. And that’s the goal for this fall.
Game coverage plans
The plan we have for 2022 is not perfect. It’s constantly tinkering with things to see what works and what doesn’t. Many decisions are based on web traffic. Hits count. Stories that drive subscriptions matter, and we pay attention to all of those things.
Our biggest change this fall will be our rankings and stats, as they will no longer exist.
For years, the Journal was the de facto site for both, an officially unofficial site that everyone used. When COVID hit, the frequency of reported scores dropped and it became harder to track anything with any semblance of accuracy.
This fall, the software we used to record stats and scores was discontinued by our parent company. We published some of our memoirs using it, so we had to come up with a new plan.
The solution is simple – we’ll post summaries of every game that comes to our attention this fall and make it available online at the end of the night.
Coaches – call out highlights or spotlight a player
For coaches, it makes life a little easier. We’ll be reporting the names of players who helped a team win and how they did it, and if someone made an exceptional effort in the loss, we’ll be sure to mention it. If a coach wants to highlight a player who may not have had the stats, we’ll bring him in. If a coach wants to mention someone who scored a goal in their college debut, we’ll go that route as well.
All this information will be in one place. This will allow readers to keep up to date with all sports across the state without having to click. It’s a change and, because it’s Rhode Island, it’s probably not going to go down well. But I promise you it will be a good product.
Why do I believe that?
New features such as “Athlete of the Week”
Scoring calling is going to be instrumental in our newest feature – The Providence Journal Athlete of the Week. Each week, we’ll choose five nominees – all based on the performance of games reported to us during the week – and post them to the website on Monday. From then on, readers will be able to vote for their choice. Whoever collects the most votes wins.
Stories from all sports
But that’s not the only reason to subscribe. Starting next week, we’ll begin our fall preview coverage. Bill Koch and I will put together a report on each of the sports of the season, as well as the players to watch this fall. These stories will air throughout the week.
Throughout the season, we’ll be covering matches, delivering the kind of coverage you’ve come to expect. You’ll find a variety of features throughout the season, the kind of stories you can only find by going to games and unearthing them.
After next week’s fall sports previews, we’ll jump right into football week. Last year’s football readership skyrocketed, especially during preview season.
You’ll get the same kind of in-depth previews we’ve had in the past, “Players to Watch” from each division and a variety of lists to whet your appetite ahead of the football season. It’ll end on Friday’s football opener with the Providence Journal preseason All-State team and a special surprise feature we’ve just started planning that’s unlike anything the Journal has done. for high school sports.
Want to relive the glory? :Watch the entire All-State Rhode Island High School Sports Awards broadcast here
During football season, you’ll find me on the sidelines on Fridays and most Saturdays. I sometimes have to play dad and take my kids to football and I will also be going to Green Bay the first Saturday in October but most of the time you can expect me to be at games all weekend – and, possibly Thursdays if the shortage of referees is not resolved before the start of the season.
Every Monday, we’ll unveil the Providence Journal Football Players of the Week feature, similar to Athlete of the Week. Five nominees, readers vote – we’ll tell you who won on Thursday.
On Tuesday morning, I will have my Top 20 Power Poll before the Rhode Island Sports Media Top 20 Poll comes out. My pick column will drop on Friday morning to lead us straight to this week’s games.
So, now it’s time to get to work.
And no one – and I mean no one – will work harder for you, the readers, than The Providence Journal.
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