Say What?Â No Room for NC State Coverage?
But, Sunday’s News and Observer somehow found room in today’s sports pages for an article about former UNC-CH quarterback Darian Durant’s play in the Canadian Football League, a 59 year old jockey winning a horse-race, and NASCAR needing to fund diversity efforts…but they couldn’t find space for the hometown major conference member’s open basketball practice that was held yesterday with the two top high school recruits in the country in attendance.
Saturday was undoubtedly a busy day in the sports world with almost all college football teams in the area taking the field; Game 6 of the ALCS; and the local NHL team’s action…but it’s still hard to believe that with the #1 high school center and the #1 high school point guard attending State’s practice that the N&O couldn’t find the requisite space for some coverage if nothing more than a throw-away mention in Tim Stevens’ recruiting column. Heck, there was fourteen full pages of sports coverage today. For the record, we weren’t the only people to recognize this today.
I don’t believe in black helicopter conspiracies where the media are concerned, but I do believe that the media is often grossly incompetent and overlooks a lot of their readers’ interests.Â My theory on this oversight falls back to the recent headcount reductions and effective merging of the N&O’s sports department with that of the Charlotte Observer. All of the other sporting events on Saturday simply spread the limited resources of the newspapers too thin and made it impossible to cover everything.
When you end up with a non-Triangle-centric sports editor sitting in Charlotte making decisions – these are the decisions that you get. If the N&O wonders why their circulation is dropping, perhaps they should look at these types of editorial decisions for a clue.
Post-script note: To be fair, we need to let you know that the N&O’s ACCNow Blog did acknowledge the Wolfpack’s practice on Saturday afternoon with a picture and a blog post that was less than 50 words and didn’t include the words Derrick Favors.
Since the N&O couldn’t spare the time and/or space to cover the event, fortunately SFN reader xphoenix87Â gave his take on the practice.
- Iâ€™m always hesitant to believe talk about a guy really dedicating himself over the summer, yada yada yada. Talk is easy in the offseason, and often never amounts to anything. However, the talk from Brandon Costner is for real. He looked a good 15 pounds lighter at least. Definitely trimmer and much more explosive than he was last year. He didnâ€™t do much during the scrimmages, but he looked great.
- Javi Gonzalez looked better than I ever would have imagined. He was making good decisions, and he was making them instantly, instinctively. He was strong with the ball and looked confident, everything that he wasnâ€™t at the beginning of last year.
- The highlight of the practice was when John Wall responded to a chant by standing up and throwing up two wolf signs. Everyone went absolutely nuts. Both Wall and C.J. Leslie were in the house along with Favors.
- There was definitely an emphasis on getting the ball into the post. Several times as a team drove down the floor, Lowe would repeatedly yell â€œSEE HIMâ€ to the guards as McCauley posted up.
- Farnold Degand is obviously not back at full speed. He wasnâ€™t awful, but he certainly isnâ€™t 100% yet.
We have addded some comments from some other friends of SFN who sent us some eye-witness accounts:
- We’ve heard a lot of buzz in the offseason about Dennis Horner and I thought his body looked much better and he looked much more agressive/confident. He just looked comfortable, which manifested itself in good shooting.
- McCauley also looked ‘smooter’ than last year (not sure if that is the best way to explain it). Generally, his activity resembled more of the 2006-2007 season than that of the 2007-2008 season.
- Fells may have been the best player on the court – which isn’t really a surprise when he asserts himself. Obviously, it appeared he was asserting himself.
- Tracy Smith continues to be so solid that it is hard to highlight any one item. He will play a lot this year.
- There is no doubt that the recruits – particular CJ Lelie and John Wall – are comfortable and familiar with the current players on the team. Wall seemed to be talking a lot with Courtney Fells.