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George Vlahakis
IU Media Relations
gvlahaki@indiana.edu
812-855-0846

Beth Moellers
IU School of Journalism
bamoelle@indiana.edu
812-855-6317

Last modified: Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Journalism students learn from and work with top sportswriters covering the Final Four

IU School of Journalism partners with U.S. Basketball Writers Association

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 29, 2006

EDITORS: The "Full Court Press" seminar is not open to the public, but a limited number of other media are welcome to cover it. The program will be from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. in Ernie Pyle Hall, Room 220.

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Among the media converging at this year's NCAA men's Final Four in Indianapolis will be a group of 50 college sportswriters who will be involved in a competition of their own. The Indiana University School of Journalism and the U.S. Basketball Writers Association have jointly organized a sportswriting seminar and scholarship competition that will begin Thursday (March 30) at the Bloomington campus.

About 50 journalism students from IU and other top programs throughout the Midwest are registered to participate in the "Full Court Press" seminar and competition. On Thursday, they will hear about experiences from a panel of college basketball writers at several major publications.

Students attending the seminar will then be assigned events to cover during Final Four weekend and will submit stories for a chance to win the Larry Donald Memorial Sportswriting Scholarship presented by the U.S. Basketball Writers Association. The $1,000 scholarship is named for Donald, who was the founder and editor of Basketball Times and Eastern Basketball magazines.

"This experience will be invaluable for students as they hear from some of the nation's finest sports journalists and then can put into practice what they learn by writing about various events at the NCAA Final Four," said Bradley Hamm, dean of the IU School of Journalism.

Joe Mitch, USBWA executive director, added, "The U.S. Basketball Writers Association is pleased to work in partnership with the Indiana University School of Journalism to provide an opportunity for students to attend a seminar on sportswriting."

The panel giving a presentation at Ernie Pyle Hall Thursday morning will include:

  • Mike DeCourcy of The Sporting News
  • Malcolm Moran of USA Today
  • Bob Ryan of the Boston Globe
  • Tony Barnhart of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution
  • Avani Patel of the Chicago Tribune
  • Billy Reed of Basketball Times and formerly a Louisville Courier-Journal columnist.

Bob Hammel, retired sports editor of The Herald-Times, will moderate the panel.

Students will be assigned credentials to cover events such as team practices at the RCA Dome, the U.S. Basketball Writers Association Player and Coach of the Year Awards Breakfast, the news conference being given by NCAA President Myles Brand, the National Association of Basketball Coaches' College All-Star Game against the Harlem Globetrotters, coaches' clinics, pep rallies and the championship game on Monday (April 3).

Many of the articles may appear in student newspapers such as the Indiana Daily Student and on the IU School of Journalism's Web site at http://journalism.indiana.edu/.