Jeff Zillgitt: 3 things

GRADED EXERCISE: In the comments section below, add the three things you learned from Jeff Zillgitt‘s presentation. Deadline is 30 minutes before class on Tuesday March 4. No exceptions!

Our guest Thursday March 6 in class is Washington Post sports writer Alan Goldenbach. Please prepare a question in advance of the class for Alan. Also, see the item about Alan below.

13 Responses to “Jeff Zillgitt: 3 things”

  1.   ssokler Says:

    l. Interviews are really important to get answers. It is best to conduct interview’s in the interviewee’s native language. It is much more difficult to obtain answers in a second language.

    2. If you place a phone call or talk to a coach before a game to get information, it will help you focus your story ahead of time. You should introduce yourself to be both coaches.

    3. You should learn to have a thick skin. As a sportswriter, you will get yelled at

  2.   Josh Says:

    Three things I learned from Jeff Zillgitt:

    1. Read material from W.C. Heinz. The best sportswriter of the century.

    2. Preparing for a game: Research is important. Call coach before the game. Introduce yourself to the coach.

    3. If you have a story that is very specific for an angle, don’t ask the question to the coach in front of everybody – wait till later. You don’t want everybody else to take your idea.

  3.   Brittany Says:

    1. Be sure to write with clairty and simplicity.

    2. Go to the heart of the story by talking to players and coaches.

    3. Don’t ask your best questions in a large open setting to avoid others getting the answers too.

  4.   Latonya Says:

    Three things I learned from Jeff Zillgitt:

    1. Have thick skin in this business. It will pay off in the end.

    2. Tell each story with clarity and simplicity.

    3. Watch your adjectives when writing for high school teams.

  5.   Nadia Says:

    Jeff seemed to say the same things professor Klein has been saying

    1. Do your research. Before you go to a game find out any useful information, call a coach before hand.

    2.Write Clear and Simple, its not the great american novel.

    3. Sometimes you get the best interviews when you’re just hanging around and not set up like an interview. They tend to be more relaxed.

  6.   Robert Says:

    What I learned from Jeff Zillgitt:

    1. Conduct one-on-one interviews when you have questions you don’t want used by other publications.

    2. A company such as USA Today often has greater access to teams than local publications.

    3. When writing about high school athletes, it is important not to use overly critical language.

  7.   Dechele Says:

    Three things I learned from Jeff Zillgit:

    1) Watch the game with everything you researched before the game in the back of your mind.

    2) You need to develop deep skin in this industry.

    3) Do plenty of research on teams you are covering

  8.   Jeremy Says:

    My three things:

    1. It’s important for a sports writer to be able to brush off insults and vitriol. At some point someone is not going to like what you have to say, and they will let you know it.

    2. The most important part of sports writing is the preparation. Don’t be afraid to get in touch with the important figures (coaches, for example) ahead of time and ask them what you need to know.

    3. Access is important, but everyone has different levels. You have to learn to make the most of what access you have, and adjust your stories to fit that perspective.

  9.   Mike Coppinger Says:

    1. Don’t ask your best questions in a group setting! You don’t want someone else to scoop you.

    2. Build your lead around your angle.

    3. Research! Are the teams running the same play? Why couldn’t they spot it? What are the gameplans?

  10.   Phil Murphy Says:

    1. When covering high schools sports, avoid overtly critiquing the athletes. Once they reach college or the pros, negative press is incorrigible. But at the high-school level, use positive reporting whenever possible.

    2. The ability to speak a foreign language is invaluable. That will put a reporter a cut above the rest with all else being equal.

    3. Constantly develop your angle. But be flexible. You never know when something unusual will happen to alter your lead.

  11.   Eric Says:

    1. Write with clarity and simplicity.

    2. When interviewing you do not want to let others steal your ideas. Meaning that one-on-one interviews are the best method if possible.

    3. Thick skin is helpful because there comes a time in every writers career when someone is going to disagree with what you wrote.

  12.   Will Says:

    1. It is always important to speak a foreign language.

    2. If possible, save your best questions for the private conversations.

    3. Always be well-read on the teams you are covering.

  13.   stephen ball Says:

    1. THe importance of speaking a foreign language in different sports.

    2.Avoid criticizing amateur athletes especially high school age ones.

    3. Develop a good angle, but be flexible

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