I know I take my share of potshots at the AJ-C, but that being said, unlike many of you, I remain a regular reader. There should be an honored place in the world for newsprint journalism; I’m realistic enough to know that its reporters have resources and access that a lowly blogger like me doesn’t have but counts on accessing. So my reaction when I see the paper get embarrassed in completely missing a story like the one about Georgia Tech’s recent NCAA sanctions isn’t satisfaction. It’s sadness.
But that’s not how I feel after reading one little dung nugget in Mark Bradley’s latest attempt at passive-aggressive observation of the world that helps pay his bills.
… College football has long been a dirty business, but it’s bigger and dirtier than ever. The strange spectacle of recruiting has become a sport unto itself. (Esteemed colleague Michael Carvell offers the best description I’ve heard: “A lot of fans would rather see their team get a big commitment than score a touchdown on Saturday.”)
How arrogant can you get? This is a readership that the AJ-C courts hard (Carvell is the recruiting beat reporter) and yet is dismissed with contempt by the very people whose job it is to win their loyalty. I’m certainly not obsessed with recruiting like some are, but I would never characterize those people’s enthusiasm in such an obnoxious way. Carvell’s comment reads like something you’d see on a Florida message board dissing Georgia fans.
I could be wrong, but dumping on the very people you count on for survival doesn’t strike me as the best long-term marketing plan.