I agree with you and put away my fandom in college once I began reporting on the team(s). It drives me bonkers to see other reporters not do that, and I see it especially with local TV sports reporters. I'm not surprised anymore that local news anchors dress in team colors, but it's become the case even more so with sports reporters on TV — and especially with team reporters. I believe there should be a clear separation there, too, but that's rarely the case.

Announcers using "we," "our," and "us," is unlistenable and so is team reporters tweeting "Our fifth win in a row!!!"

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Dec 31, 2021·edited Dec 31, 2021

Jeff, I love the substack, I’m guessing there’s a digital/business reason for this but when I get it in my email only half of it displays and then I have to click a link at the bottom to see the other half. Why is this?

And no, you obviously cannot root for the teams you are covering. How is this even a question?

I am embarrassed for the local TV anchors who are wearing the team’s jersey on air, would they wear a policeman’s outfit when covering a cop story?

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You're so right about Michael Wilbon. I guess for him the bank account justifies the means, but what would his 30-year-old self say?

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Interesting piece, Jeff. I'm right on the age divide you landed on and thought I'd chime in with my perspective.

When I started working at the student paper Texas Tech, I took the lessons you also learned and followed them dogmatically. Working at the student paper, I shed any element of Tech fandom I could. I stopped wearing free t-shirts with the school logo I'd eagerly accepted the year before. I barred family from gifting me anything with a Double T on it. I'd keep my cool as my roommates celebrated a big win.

I've totally come around. Maybe it's because the sport I mainly cover is (frustratingly and annoyingly) shoved into a box by most outlets in the U.S., but I can't see how enjoying last night's Liberty Bowl win affects my credibility when opining on World Cup qualification.

A lot of times covering a sport can beat the fan out of you. Remembering what it's like to be a fan, to be fucking furious with a referee, to pay $50 for parking, to yell myself hoarse in front of the TV, helps me connect with my readers, most of whom never will get priority parking or a press credential.

I think it's worth noting that this quest for a total lack of fandom to achieve non-biased work is, as far as I've found, mostly American. Of course Panamanian journalists are rooting for Panama to make the World Cup. 'I'm from Panama and so are you, the audience member. So...Vamos Panama,' the mentality goes. Trust me when I say, however, there's still plenty of criticism and accountability going around.

In the UK, some writers wear their Premier League affiliation on their sleeves, leaving it up to the reader to decide if their analysis and topic selection can be trusted (similar to the examples you mention in the newsletter).

To me, that's OK. I trust the audience enough to read and evaluate the work and to weigh up just how biased or non-biased the writer may be.

Love the newsletter. Keep it up...and Go Tech.

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Are you not even going to mention that you're standing in front of a Jim Mecir jersey?

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Kimes's WAY over the top reaction to Shohei Ohtani signing with the Angels instead of the Mariners (a "behind the scenes" moment on Around the Horn, but still went viral) completely turned me off to her. Cannot take her seriously as a sports journalist anymore

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