Just a few thoughts from me, your dear blogger, as I leave my current post. Hope to stick around, maybe with a weekly column or something. Once you start being a good blogger, it’s hard to quit altogether.
In fact, I hadn’t planned on writing one. Who really cares what a blogger boy at home has to say? I hate to bring attention to myself (that’s a lie, but like, not that way). But last week we called for a new manager here at Mid-Major Madness and you’ve been so supportive and caring that I felt I had to say something.
First of all, thank you to all of you. You made this job fun by reading, listening, engaging and arguing. You have also improved this site by calling us when we were wrong or by setting your own example and giving us ideas to inspire us.
Second, I cannot leave here without thanking everyone who has helped make this site what it is.
Matt Brown, Caroline Darney and Beth Maiman: Our blog overlords for the past few years. When Matt hired me, I told him I wanted to make this site fun and weird, and he let me try it out. I think (?) That we have succeeded. Over the years these three have answered all of my questions, given the stories an extra eye, and fought for me behind the scenes, helping us increase our budget to pay more of our writers and even travel a bit. bit.
Greg Mitchell: The first person I recruited when I was hired. He’s had two kids since we started this thing, and I still haven’t gotten rid of them. Thank God. He’s a hell of a writer and, damn it, he’s passionate about mid-range hoops. Every few days it will drop into the “hey, I wrote something” Slack. And each time, it’s a home run. All of our work here is to tell the stories of players and teams that the national media overlooks. Greg did it better than anyone.
Chris Schutte: It didn’t take long for Greg and I to realize we were over our heads trying to get Mid-Major Madness moving again. We tricked Chris into joining us as editor and we are so glad we did. Not only did he prove to be a reliable publisher, but the insights he brought to the table made this site grow faster than anything we’ve done. From the stock watch (RIP) to the water fountain, including its approach to navigation on the week of champions and the madness of March. Most importantly, he became a great friend. Hoping we can take another basketball trip to Philly soon.
Kyle Cajero: By far the most talented writer and analyst we’ve had here. I don’t think he ever wrote anything on this site that didn’t blew me away. He can break down the gang, spread A + functionality, troll Twitter, and improve the efficiency of everyone around him. He’s now an SID assistant at Montana State-Billings and damn they are lucky to have him.
Cameron Newton: I gave Cam the keys to our Twitter at one point knowing full well that I would regret it. There have been times I’ve done it, but I’m happy if it makes sense. Cam has helped me push my comfort zone and constantly reminded me that the only reason we cover basketball is because it’s fun. It’s a game and you can’t cover a game without a sense of lightness and humor. Most importantly: The courage he showed in facing Liberty in his column was probably the most impressive thing anyone here has done in the past six years. And he didn’t back down. It either.
Sam Newberry and Lance Hartzler: MFers saved the day as we desperately searched for help with editing. Not only did they answer the bell from an editing standpoint, but they also lent their voices to podcast (remember our podcast?), Votes in The Other Top 25, and views for every tough decision we’ve had to make over the past year. The pleasure of working with them was only surpassed by getting to know them and learning from them.
Hannah Butler: I spent nine years working full time in social media and I wasn’t about to spend all of my extra time worrying about our social media. So I told Hannah to take our Instagram and run with it. And she ran. And ran. She has developed our social models and significantly increased our audience over the past year. Hope to stay around MMM to some extent so that I can roast her on UNI every time they lose.
The only writer who has stayed since before I arrived, John “SoCon John” Hooper. If I wake up one day and see 35 unread texts, my first thought isn’t that there’s an emergency, it’s “oh, I bet John just ranted about Furman” . Find something that excites you as much as it is for this league. If I asked him 4000 words about Duggar Baucom, he would have it in an hour.
New Blood: Everyone who joined us over the past two years and still is. Austin Montgomery, Brian Emory, Chase Whitney, Garrett Lash, Isabel Gonzalez, Jared Kotler, Liam Hanley, Logan Butts and Nick Lorensen. Nick started here when he was 12 (slight exaggeration) and has improved more as a writer and journalist than anyone who has been here in the past six years.
Writers I Scared: Or, I moved on to bigger and better things. Harry Schroeder, Andy Evans, Austin Brown, Ellie Lieberman, Gianna Marshall, John Dales, John Templon, Luke Benz, Matt Craig, Marcus Washington, Primetime Mitch Northam, Ray Curren, Torrance Jones, Will Maupin and many more.
The coaches, the players and the SIDs that I have worked with. For the most part, they all understood that our role here was to tell their stories. Hope we helped elevate their universities, and in return they answered some tough questions. The reporter-SID relationship is never perfect, but when there is mutual respect and understanding for the work on both sides, there is a lot you can do.
I know I thanked our readers and subscribers above, but I will do it again. Thanks, and please keep reading. These staff have so much more to say.