As you may have noticed the past week, I’ve started writing about UNC basketball for Bleacher Report. I was inspired to apply when I noticed the increasing circulation of B/R articles during the UNC season, and I thought that since they accept rolling applications for writers, I might as well give it a shot. I spend enough time writing about UNC basketball for my own purposes, and find it enjoyable, stimulating and fulfilling, that it was worth an attempt to gain more readers and see where it goes. Most of all, one too many people told me that I sound like a sports commentator when I get going in a discussion…
But that is the opportunity and attraction of B/R: they build a massive team of writers by inviting anyone to apply and allowing the best to sort themselves out.
For those of you who had never heard of it: B/R was founded in 2006 and is the fourth largest sports media site in the US, having surpassed CBS Sports and CNNSI in web traffic. They have received accolades as a well run company that has successfully seized upon the evolution of online journalism, but have also received criticisms for the natural consequence of their model, a dilution of content quality.
Acknowledging my own shortcomings as an amateur journalist who does this for a hobby, I have committed myself to certain personal standards to avoid that trap. With the exception of certain opinion pieces that may arise, my articles will a) focus solely on the topics on which I can reasonably call myself an expert in a fairly strict sense (and I mean by this: college basketball, and for the most part ACC basketball) and b) not imply the need for the sort of access to the players and coaches that Robbi Pickeral, Andrew Carter, Adam Lucas, etc. have, which I lack.
Essentially, you can expect the same passionate and informed historical perspective on the experience of Carolina basketball that you find here, with a little more of the comprehensive insightful analysis of the team’s prospects since the articles have a wider audience now.
I am also determined to maintain this site, even though it looks sad and empty compared to the fairly awesome design of B/R. When I started blogging, my primary concern was preserving for myself my experience of Carolina basketball, and I intend to maintain that concern here. All articles that have a broad interest will be published first to B/R and then linked here, but there will be the occasional article that lacks a broad appeal and merely serves to preserve a certain reaction or thought or experience, and those will be recorded on this site, which will serve as a sort of basketball fanhood journal.
My first few articles for B/R are linked below:
I have laughed at myself for beginning both major transitions into blogging – establishing this blog last year and then now applying for B/R – in the first few weeks following the conclusion of the college basketball season. If one was strategically planning his development as a blogger, he would not choose to begin his attempt just as interest in his sport plummets for the summer. It’s as if I experience withdrawals that compel me in some way to hold on to college basketball; or perhaps it is that anticipation of next season is when the most fun writing takes place.
We will see, it’s just a hobby. The articles come easy, they are fun, quick and fulfilling to write, and it is an intellectually satisfying endeavor that keeps my writing sharp. I would certainly appreciate anyone who feels led to share, tweet, etc. my articles, B/R counts reads as the primary metric for evaluation. Check back here later for a concluding post on my experience of this season; otherwise expect most content this summer to be up on B/R.