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Vol. 48, No. 2 • February 2011 • .pdf version
Looking for next Rising Star in the USBWA constellation
By JOHN AKERS / Basketball Times
The time has come to identify the USBWA's next Rising Star.
Dan Wolken of the Memphis Commercial-Appeal won the inaugural award, given to a member who is under 30 and shows the most promise in our profession.
Because this was like an inaugural Hall of Fame Class, with too many worthy candidates to mention them all. The finalists included J. Brady McCollough of the Kansas City Star, Brendan F. Quinn of Basketball Times and Luke Winn of Sports Illustrated.
We need your nominations to identify the next Wolken.
The award could go to someone who has already made a name for himself while covering one of the top teams for a major newspaper or web site or who writes about college basketball as a whole for a magazine. It could be someone who has excelled at a medium-sized or smaller newspaper. It could be a student writer who is scooping the older writers on his beat. It could be someone who has built a reputation with his own blog site or as a freelancer.
We not only want to recognize the obviously gifted young writers in our organization, we want to help jump-start the careers of those who might be under-recognized. And in turn, we hope an infusion of youth will also be good for the USBWA. Everybody wins.
We require only that the nominees are USBWA members who were under 30 on Jan. 1, 2011.
The Rising Star committee – comprised of myself, Wolken, Nicole Vargas of the San Diego Union Tribune, Jason King of Yahoo! Sports, Gary Parrish of CBSSports.com and Shannon Shelton of the Detroit Free Press – would place an emphasis on writers who have displayed journalistic excellence, an interest in the USBWA and a desire to cover college basketball for the foreseeable future.
Surely you know someone who fits that bill.
Please send your nominations to me at firstname.lastname@example.org by Feb. 15. Self-nominations are welcome. We'll also consider anyone who was nominated a year ago and was still younger than 30 on Jan. 31, 2011.
The winner will receive a plaque and will be recognized at the annual USBWA breakfast on the morning of April 4, the day of the national championship game.
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