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Local Media Members Deserve Praise

COVID-19 has turned the sports world upside down.

While there's no doubt professional, college and high school/prep athletes around the world have handled the sporting unfamiliarity of 2020 with grace and class, there's another group of people who have worked just as hard and have handled it just as well.

I'm talking about my brothers and sisters in the sports media world.

Spring and summer is usually when news-gathering organizations at the local level - I'm talking those whose reporters don't have major professional sports beats - start to open their doors for new journalists to join their staffs.

Not so much in 2020, with organizations out straight scrambling to keep their coverage up during the pandemic.

It's been a challenge with games shut off. It's unusual during a spring season not to break out the scorebook, sunscreen, camp chair and bug spray depending on where you're going and and give our young athletes well deserved coverage.

But the Larry Mahoney's, Eric Gullickson's and other local guys, most of whom I've known for years and are great people and are fantastic at what they do, have done all they've can to keep the coverage going. Whether it's feature stuff or keeping up with what the Maine Principals' Association, UMaine and local Division III colleges are announcing in relation to the upcoming fall season they have had to dig deep at times.

Once the games do resume, our sports journalists will just be thrilled to be back on the sidelines and in the press boxes.

Here in New England, guys like Ben Volin and Chad Finn, the latter of whom is a UMaine alumnus, have been slaying the Boston professional sports coverage. Volin is second-to-none when it comes to Patriots coverage and Finn is as versatile as Troy Brown. And that's important in this line of work nowadays. He's one of my favorite columnists and is always great for Celtics conversations on Twitter.

So, the next time you decided to troll a newspaper or social media comment section with "fake news" hashtags, remember how hard all of these guys are working during the midst of a global pandemic.

If you see one of your local sportswriters at the grocery store, tell them thanks.

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