A lot of people complain about the 24 hour news cycle these days, where the media feels the pressure to be giving you news every second of the day, leading them to stretch the definition of "news" so far that you could wrap the continent of Australia in it. Sports is under the same pressure, what with the SportsCenter and all that, but it's even worse because sports is so specific.
You can pass off a cockatoo riding a bike on a tightrope as a news story, apparently, but you can't pass it off as a sports story, unless the cockatoo belongs to Cowboys tight end Jason Witten. This leaves sportswriters very desperate, especially during offseasons (and even during the regular football season) since there's an entire dry, terrifying week between games where there is really no relevant news to write about.
This is what they come up with when backed into that corner.
7Video Game Simulations
"Why is quarterback Jay Cutler getting worse?" asked the Chicago Sun-Times (2011 Pulitzer Prize winner), a fairly important question to Chicago Bears fans, and pretty intriguing if the writer had an answer. His answer, however, was to play a round of Madden NFL 12 where he swapped Cutler with the opposing team's quarterback, Aaron Rodgers.
I wish I could have an excuse to play video games for an hour and get paid for writing an article about it. 5 Cultures That Could Have Totally Conquered The World, backed up by some Civilization, how about that? 7 Reasons Space Travel Is Actually Two-Dimensional, based on playing through Starcraft? Editors? No?
In space, you can only go up like about 100 feet.
Other sites write articles using Maddento predict the games for that week. That site and ESPN are doing it, and who knows what else. It's strange for a professional sportswriter to do something for you that you not only can do at home but is actually something designed for the mass market to enjoy at home. It's like paying someone to eat a cake for you.
So yeah, all you people that want me to write an article about deadly animals or something by telling you how I am doing in Angry Birds, you all go ahead and write in. I don't know if our servers can handle the load, but your voices must be heard.
6Asking Random, Unqualified People For Their Opinions
By about Wednesday in the NFL news cycle, you're pretty much out of relevant people commenting on what happened during the games on Sunday and Monday, and if you're in the offseason of any sports, nobody relevant has got a damn thing to say, or anything to say it about.
That's why you just start asking whoever the hell you can get your hands on about whatever you can think of. One reporter asked pro football player Ricky Jean Francois to predict the future career of superstar college quarterback Andrew Luck. Jean Francois isn't a scout, or even a quarterback. He's a 300-pound guy whose job it is to be a human wall. Predictably, he said Luck would do fine until he ended up playing Jean Francois' old school (LSU), and then he would lose because LSU is the best.
Is it just me or do you want to put turntables under this tiger's paws?
But if you want a serious insider's interview on what a team's strategy should be for next week and you can't get the coaches or any of the players, or anyone that's actually part of the team organization, maybe you can ask the local radio sideline reporter from CBS affiliate 98.5 "The Sports" HUB. I'm sure people are dying to know what he thinks the team should do.
That's almost as authoritative as reporting who some blogger thinks a team should sign.