Trying to be a journalist instead of a fan

Published 2:26 pm Friday, May 14, 2021

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The rule in journalism is to always be unbiased.

A journalist can’t allow their opinions to get in the way of their reporting. They must be objective and stick to the facts.

This is especially true in sports. Sports writers can’t cheer for any particular team to win. We have to stick strictly to the facts. Scores and statistics are our best friends.

Sometimes this can be tricky though.

This week, I went to Tuscaloosa to cover five separate Chilton County softball teams as they played for the chance to advance to the State Tournament.

With many of the teams playing at the same time, I had to bounce from field to field to try to make sure every team got coverage.

However, as I went from game-to-game, I found my excitement level either rising or depleting as I looked at each scoreboard.

After attending many games and following each of the teams for months this season, I had trouble not letting the sports fan in me come out.

I had grown attached to these teams as a fan would, and wanted to see them succeed.

When each team won, I found myself happy to see them move on. When some lost and were eliminated, I felt myself feel saddened that their journey was over.

This is true of most sports writers. Though they will never show it, most still have loyalties to particular teams of different sports.

Most if not all sports journalists start as fans. That is why they get into the business.

That is particularly true for me. And while I will never show it, and it will never show up in my writing, every team in Chilton County should know that I am secretly rooting for them.