While all of these articles have an air of competition, they also focus on the people that are involved. By focusing on the athletes, and who they are as people, these writers are appealing to more than just the sports fan. My favorite article was the one about the U.S. women’s hockey team. The Canadian women hadn’t lost an olympic game since 1998, so for the U.S. to beat them in the fashion that they did, it’s fantastic for the sport of hockey, women’s hockey in particular, here in the states. The story about the Oklahoma State receiver from Stamford, Texas, was a bit overdramatized in my opinion. The way Washington was portrayed from what his aunt told his mother was a little farfetched. It was almost like she was comparing to him to some kind of biblical prophesy being fulfilled. While I’m sure Washington was an answer to prayers from both the mother and aunt amongst others, but it still seems like a bit of a reach.
I think a sportswriter should have a great understanding of the sport they are covering when writing a game summary, or an article like the one about the Macon court regulation issues. You really have to know the sport to understand how just a foot difference would have such an impact on these high school athletes. For an article like the profile on James Washington, I believe a very basic understanding of the sport that the athlete plays would work just fine. Features are more about the athlete themselves than the actual sport.