North of the 400

North of Toronto, South of a championship

Awarding the sports Pulitzers

with 2 comments

Earlier today, the candidates for the Pulitzer prizes were announced. And Dan Levy, media columnist for The Sporting Blog and host of On the DL, asked what sports Pulitzers would look like.

Not a bad idea.

Given how the journalism prizes are awarded for different beats, different fields even, it only feels fair to set a few categories, not just best blogger and such. So with a major nod to Levy, here’s what I think looks best:

  • Sports Blog (Team/market-specific) – For a blog that provides outstanding, detailed coverage on a specific team or market. For example, Drunk Jays Fans (Toronto Blue Jays); The 700 Level (Philadelphia)
  • Sports Blog (General) – For larger, more generalized sports blogs (Deadspin, TrueHoop, etc).
  • Sports Blog (Feature/column) – For best feature story or column on a blog (Pat Jordan’s report on Spring Break for Deadspin, etc).
  • Best Sports Columnist (Local) – For a local sports columnist that isn’t writing for a national audience (Jason Whitlock, Kansas City Star; Dan Le Batard, Miami Herald).
  • Best Sports Columnist (National) – For a columnist that is writing for a national audience (Jeff MacGregor, ESPN.com; Jason Whitlock, Fox Sports)
  • Investigative Sports Reporting – The best investigative sports reporting (ESPN’s Outside the Lines, etc).
  • Best Beat Reporting – For beat coverage of a team or sport (Pierre LeBrun, ESPN.com; Doug Smith, Toronto Star)
  • Other Original Content – For the best content that doesn’t fall into one of the above categories (the cartoons on Battle of California, Bloge Salming’s digital shorts)

Thats a pretty big and pretty intimidating ballot (I didn’t miss anything, did I?). I make no claims to read more then anybody else, but I’m not sure I read enough to accurately vote on everything there (I guess there’s a good reason why you have to submit stuff to the Pulitzer board).

So I’ll make a few educated guesses where I can and leave a few categories blank.

  • Sports Blog (Team/market-specific): Raptors Republic (Toronto Raptors)
    Not only does the Republic offer excellent pre and post-game breakdowns, but they even break down each players role in the game; have a great ingoing series where Arsenalist breaks down plays that worked (or didn’t) and why; Tom Listen uses advanced stats to break down team play and they have both a podcast and a Twitter feed, both of which are among the best in team-specific blogs.
  • Sports Blog (General) – The Sporting Blog (The Sporting News)
    The Sporting Blog has risen by leaps and bounds in the past year and now is more then a far second to Deadspin. They offer regular columns on different sports, have a daily animation by LSUfreek, have a network of blogs specializing on each sport. They’re entertaining without feeling pandering.
  • Sports Blog (Feature/column) – Kelly Dwyer, Behind the Box Score (Ball Don’t Lie, Yahoo! Sports)
    Dwyer’s daily column recaps not only what happened in each NBA game the night before, but breaks them down in a larger scheme. He examines trends foe teams, what caused the loss and who had great nights. It’s essential reading for any fan of the NBA.
  • Best Columnist (Local) – Dave Feschuk, Toronto Star
    On a regular basis, Feschuk offers up great columns that range from hockey to basketball to the Winter Olympics. He’s able to write great pieces on all of these topics, plus the occasional feature. I’d be hard pressed to name a columnist I enjoy more.
  • Best Sports Columnist (National) – Rick Reilly, ESPN the Magazine
    For all the flak that Reilly gets – and deserves – his column on the sad demise of Mike Penner was one of the year’s best pieces of writing, sports or otherwise.

I can’t profess to have a great knowledge of the other categories, especially beat reporting. I’m sure Outside the Lines has the best investigative story, but I can’t think of any offhand that really stand out.

Anyway, that’s how my imaginary sports Pulitzer ballot would look. I’m curious to see other peoples. Let me know!

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Written by M.

April 12, 2010 at 9:51 pm

2 Responses

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  1. […] Nick points out that the Pulitzer Prize really could be the Pulit Surprise and it would be equally — if not more — exciting. But what if there was a Pulitzer Prize for sports? I threw that out on Twitter, and one blogger took the idea and ran with it. So rather than do all the work, CLICK HERE AND READ WHAT HE DID. […]

  2. […] Nick points out that the Pulitzer Prize really could be the Pulit Surprise and it would be equally — if not more — exciting. But what if there was a Pulitzer Prize for sports? I threw that out on Twitter, and one blogger took the idea and ran with it. So rather than do all the work, CLICK HERE AND READ WHAT HE DID. […]


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