By John Bednarowski, APSE Fourth Vice President

Gregg Doyel of the Indianapolis Star, took first place in the Associated Press Sports Editors 2014 contest in Column Writing category in the 75,001 to 175,000 circulation category.

Doyel, whose entry included a column on a former Purdue basketball coach Gene Keady’s combover, will be presented a first-place plaque at the 2015 APSE banquet. The banquet and awards dinner concludes the APSE Conference June 24-27 at The Westgate Hotel in San Diego, Calif.

He edged Jeff Jacobs of the Hartford Courant, who finished second, and Berry Tramel, of The Oklahoman, who came in third. Sports editors in the 75,001 to 175,000 category submitted 57 Column Writing entries.The contest is open to APSE members. Click here to join.

Contest chair Mary Byrne of USA Today Sports numbered each entry, assuring they had been stripped of headlines, graphics, bylines and any other element that would identify the writer or news organization.

In early February, preliminary judges at the APSE Winter Conference in Lake Buena Vista, Fla., selected a top 10, with each judge ranking the entries in order from 1 to 10 separately on a secret ballot. Entries were given 10 points for a first-place vote, nine points for second and so on down to 1 point for a 10th-place vote. The final 10 were given to a second judging group, which ranked the entries 1-10 in the same fashion. The winner and final rankings are determined by tallying the ballots.

The Column Writing category is judged based on style, writing quality, originality and local appeal. There is no restriction on subject matter and no requirement that the column appears regularly. Each news organization is permitted two entries in this category.

The top 10 is listed below with links to writers’ Twitter pages and winning entries.

1. Gregg Doyel, Indianapolis Star, 49 points, two first-place votes


     Gene Keady spent how much on that comb-over?!

     From homeless and hungry, Shortridge star rallies

     Laughter can’t hide the pain for Purdue captain

     Downtown gym with a history hides in plain sight

     This Pacers’ usher is a “player,” too

2. Jeff Jacobs, Hartford Courant, 42 points, one first-place vote

     No links

3.  Berry Tramel, The Oklahoman, 37 points

     Douglass-Locust Grove: Why Locust Grove should agree to replay the game’s last 60 seconds

     Chris Paul puts all the blame on his shoulders for Clippers losing Game 5

    Adrian Peterson: Apologies have been replaced by apologists

    Teammates forever: The story of former Sooner Brewster Hobby’s longtime dedication to   teammate Bob Cornell’s rehab

     Is Texas Tech’s Kliff Kingsbury the Anna Kournikova of college football?

4. Greg Stoda, Palm Beach Post, 34 points, three first-place votes

     Someone in Dolphins leadership must show a pulse; it’s up to Ryan Tannehill

     Miami Heat fans — and players — give LeBron James a warm embrace

     Florida AD Foley will look bad if McElwain hire doesn’t turn out well

     Forget locker-room mentality; Miami Dolphins have a prison-yard mentality

     In the end, Tevon Coney couldn’t entrust his dream to shaky Gators

5. Martin Fennelly, The Tampa Tribune, 31 points

    Yzerman delivers cruelest ‘No’ of all

    Zimmer’s passing leaves baseball, all of us poorer

    FSU finally gets it right with Winston

    Hits, losses just keep on coming

    As one of 13 kids, Bolts’ Boyle knows Christmas highs, lows

6. Ron Borges, Boston Herald, 30 points

    No links

T-7. Scott Fowler, Charlotte Observer, 29 points

    No way to spin it, Carolina Panthers making a mistake with Steve Smith

    Hairston’s rough history continues

    Carolina Panthers owner Jerry Richardson still has time to get it right on domestic violence

    Carolina Panthers’ Cam Newton hasn’t proven he’s a $100 million quarterback

    The Charlotte Hornets should trade Lance Stephenson – now

T-7. Bob Wojnowski, Detroit News, 29 points

    Wojo is down – err falling down – for curling’s cold stone challenge

    For 50 years, Lions owner William Clay Ford kept the faith

    NBA’s Sterling ban sends message: No tolerance for intolerance

    Combating domestic violence would benefit NFL more than firing Roger Goodell

    Harbaugh is fiery leader UM needs

T-7. Joe Strauss, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 29 points

    I’m trying to love the World Cup

    At Rams Park, Ferguson’s kids find peace

    Port adds to her amateur golf legacy

    Mixed reaction to ‘docu-series’ about Sam

    Blues can’t explain disappointing finish

10. Gordon Monson, The Salt Lake Tribune, 20 points

      No links