By Todd M. Adams, APSE Second Vice President
Will Hobson and Steven Rich of The Washington Post won first place in the Associated Press Sports Editors 2017 contest in explanatory writing for the Over 175,000 circulation category.
Hobson and Rich edged the second-place team of Seth Wickersham and Don Van Natta from ESPN. Mary Pilon from Bleacher Report placed third.
Sports editors in the Over 175,000 category submitted 42 explanatory entries. The contest
is open to APSE members. Click here to join.
Contest chair John Bednarowski and fellow APSE officers Todd M. Adams, Robert Gagliardi and Jeff Rosen 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 February, preliminary judges at the APSE Winter Conference in St. Petersburg, Fla., and off-site around the country, 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 one 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 winner in each category will receive a plaque at the 2018 APSE Summer Conference at the Nashville Marriott at Vanderbilt University on June 17-20. The second- through 10th-place writers will receive frameable certificates.
The explanatory writing includes trends, issues, original ideas and should explain something. They shed new light on issues and personalities in the news. They are more than the feature and less than the project entry. They go beyond the “yesterday” of the breaking news story.
The top nine is listed below with links to writers’ Twitter pages, APSE member websites and winning entries.
2. Seth Wickersham, Don Van Natta, ESPN, 40 points, 3 first-place votes
3. Mary Pilon, Bleacher report, 35 points
5. Brian Windhorst, ESPN, 30 points
7. Andy McCullough, Los Angeles Times, 25 points