While out covering a game, I’m often asked why The Daily Advocate covers one team as opposed to another or even if we devote more attention to one sport than another.
Those are good questions, and I think the process of covering local sports is worth explaining to our readers.
Hopefully this week’s column will provide you, our readers, with a better understanding of our methods.
First, let’s break down our county sports into numbers.
The Daily Advocate covers eight Darke County high schools throughout the school year, which are Franklin Monroe, Arcanum, Tri-Village, Greenville, Ansonia, Versailles, Bradford and Mississinawa Valley.
While our headquarters are located within Greenville city limits, our goal is to provide even coverage across each Darke County school and sport.
(Full disclosure: Friday night football games gain slightly more coverage based on community interest.)
Within our eight Darke County schools, they compete in an average five different sports each season. For instance, fall sports include a combination of soccer, football, tennis, cross country, volleyball and golf.
So out of those eight schools we cover roughly a little less than 40 school teams, not including any local events such as Eldora Speedway races, the Special Olympics program and various other Darke County events.
I’m also asked why we don’t cover many JV games, and the simple truth is that they would double that number.
Each day we have anywhere between two to 10 games scheduled throughout Darke and neighboring counties.
We are a sports staff of two, which consists of myself and my editor, Kyle Shaner, so we have to make tough choices each day.
We place special emphasis on games where two Darke County teams are playing each other. For instance, if Arcanum and Greenville face off, or FM and Tri-Village, we’ll likely be there.
And if it’s an invitational or a tournament, there’s a good chance we’ll have it on our schedule.
Many of our choices are logically tied to distance. We’re more likely to cover a local game, which cuts down on time and frees us up to cover more games. But if its an especially important game or a deep-seeded rivalry, we’ll also make the trip.
Even by eliminating games based on those criteria, we’ll often still have three or four games to choose from every day.
We try and whittle down these choices by considering who we’ve covered recently and spread out our coverage as evenly as possible
While it’s by no means a science, we do our best to show off as many Darke County athletes as we can.
The juggling is challenging, but it’s also an blast to be a a part of Darke County’s athletic environment.
I hope this answers some of our readers’ questions about our coverage, as we try to be as transparent as possible.
As always, we invite feedback through calling or emailing with your thoughts and opinions. It’s always a pleasure to hear from our readers.
Ryan Carpe is a sports writer for the Daily Advocate. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.