Can you edit better than a third grader?

I don’t know what it is with the N&O’s editing, or lack thereof. It seems particularly bad for the sports section. It may due to my bias for the N.C. State Wolfpack but it seems there’s a general lack of knowledge for State coverage. I don’t know because I usually only skim the Duke or UNC stories.

N.C. State’s basketball team beat Western Michigan yesterday in a game in Raleigh. Sports writer J.P. Giglio wrote a good story on the game, but because Giglio referenced last week’s game against St. Bonaventure, whomever supposedly edits the sports page listed St. Bonaveuture as yesterday’s opponent on the front of the sports page.

Giglio wrote:

Just like the previous game against St. Bonaventure, Richard Howell fouled out Saturday against Western Michigan.

… and this is what appeared on the front of the sports page:

The Pack played Western Michigan, not St. Bonaventure.

Fewer than two weeks ago, the sports page flubbed the name of N.C. State’s basketball coach in a photo caption on the front of the sports page, calling him Mike Gottfried instead of Mark Gottfried. This error didn’t get by my eagle-eyed 8-year-old son, Travis, so why in the world did it get by the paper’s editors?

The N&O has a chance to offer the best coverage of local sports, and generally the paper does. For many subscribers, sports coverage is very important. That’s why I’m mystified that the N&O has let its sports editing get so bad. It may be enough to drive people away from the newspaper.

DeCock: Yow’s culture change continues

Debbie Yow fired N.C. State football coach Tom O’Brien today:

Still, despite [O’Brien’s] losing record in ACC play and the missed opportunities that kept piling up, O’Brien still got the Wolfpack to bowl games on a regular basis, beat North Carolina on a regular basis and kept the program clean. And N.C. State can look no farther than its rivals Chapel Hill for an object lesson on the perils of striving for football glory.

While some of TOB’s recent losses have proven baffling, I’m not pleased with Yow’s decision, particularly with the revelation of how deeply in debt Maryland’s athletics programs became under her leadership. My fears regarding Yow’s apparent focus on winning alone have me greatly concerned for the future of Wolfpack Athletics.

via DeCock: Yow's culture change continues – NC State –

State fans: treat visiting fans with respect

My nephew posted a link to this Letter to the Editor from an Florida State fan who was treated rudely at the recent NCSU-FSU football game.

My friends and I were just four of the 11 FSU students who bought tickets for the NC State game last weekend. We made the 10 hour trek and had a great time, besides going to the actual game. Sure, the loss was tough but what truly ruined the experience was the hatred we received from NC State fans.

This letter may have simply been a “sour grapes” response to the Wolfpack’s win but I think there’s more to it than that. I can also say that I’ve been appalled at how some N.C. State fans have treated visiting fans, particularly before football games.
Continue reading

Tackles and tassles

As a Wolfpack fan and an alum of N.C. State, it might be easy for me to gloat about the academic scandal taking place with UNC’s football and basketball players. The vaunted “Carolina Way” that Carolina people love to preach has turned out to be amusingly hollow. It seems that academic performance takes a back seat to winning. It would be amusing under most circumstances.

Then I hear what N.C. Athletic Director Debbie Yow says about the Wolfpack teams and it makes me wonder: what’s to stop the Wolfpack from falling into the same trap? I don’t question Yow’s dedication to N.C. State at all but there’s more to winning than the win and loss counts. Is Yow equally dedicated to academic performance? If it came down to winning or looking the other way when academic shenanigans take place, what would Yow do?

The kind of money being thrown around in college sports is in doubt corrupting. I can only hope my school is strong enough to resist the urge to cut corners.

Karl Hess backlash

Still reeling from its loss to Duke Thursday, N.C. State came out flat against the Seminoles yesterday and lost 76-62. That wasn’t especially surprising, but what was surprising was referee Karl Hess tossing two fans from the game with 6 minutes left. The fans, former N.C. State basketball legends Chris Corchiani and Tom Gugliotta, admitted to jawing at Hess but never threatened him nor used profanity. Hess tossed them anyway and gave no explanation.

N.C. State Athletic Director Debbie Yow announced today that Corchiani and Gugliotta, along with the rest of the 1989 ACC title team, will be honored at Tuesday’s game against UNC. I think it’s great that the university is sending the message that these two ACC legends are always welcome at the Wolfpack’s home court.

As for Hess, needless to say Hess won’t soon live this down, no matter what arena he next appears in.

Active day

Wow, what a day! It started off with a lazy start. After breakfast I spent time upgrading our home’s main Linux fileserver. This was followed by some family basketball practice.

After basketball practice, I headed over to attend the first anniversary celebration of the St. Monica Teen Center, a center where magic takes place in Southeast Raleigh. It was good to chat with folks there and to see how proud those kids are to have that center.

After the St. Monica party, I grabbed lunch before heading out the door for Travis’s basketball game. The Salvation Army was short on referees today so I was “volunteered” to referee the game (along with a coach from the other team). The teams played a good game and I had fun with it, too.
Continue reading

Sports pic of the year?

Ethan Hyman - - N.C. State Ethan Hyman - - N.C. State's Mark Gottfried can't believe a foul was called on the Wolfpack during the second half of N.C. State's 61-60 loss to Virginia on Saturday in Raleigh.

I love this photo Ethan Hyman of the News and Observer took of N.C. State basketball coach Mark Gottfried reacting to a foul call during yesterday’s loss to Virginia. In capturing Coach Gottfried’s acrobatics, Ethan’s photo conveyed the thrilling nature of ACC basketball in a nutshell.

Nice work, Ethan!

It’s better with a dish

Though it was being shown locally on over-the-air TV, I decided to hunt for the N.C. State-Miami basketball game on satellite today. When I found it I was amazed at how much better the satellite signal was from the OTA signal. Players in motion seemed blocky as the compression artifacts piled on, but the signal direct from Miami was crystal-clear.

Whenever you compress a signal that’s already compressed, you really start making a mess as the tricks that compression schemes rely on get broken in the process. Given a choice, I’ll tune in the satellite signal every time if I want a quality signal to watch.

NCSU Chancellor’s home

N.C. State recently built an updated home for its chancellor. The home, with 5,000sf of entertaining space and a cost of $3.5 million, immediately drew the ire of local conservatives who held it up as an example of the misplaced priorities of academia. Or a waste of taxpayer dollars, or … something. The protests are a little unclear.

I know many of these conservatives simply can’t live without having something to be angry about but before they go blowing a gasket they should note that their ire is misguided. Private donations paid for the home in its entirety.

Let me say that again: private donations paid for the home in its entirety. The cost to taxpayers (and students)? Nothing. Zip. Zilch.
Continue reading

Thanksgiving, ice skating, symphony

The Turner/Hunter clan

Wow. What an action-packed few days we’ve had here.

Wednesday the kids were out of school so I had to figure out something fun to do with them. The weather was still warm (near 70, if I recall) and Travis wanted to go to the store to look at Legos. Rather than get in a car and drive there, I decided the family would bike there instead. The North Hills Target is about 6 miles from here via the greenway, so we hopped on our bikes and pedaled our way there and back, enjoying a smoothie after our window-shopping. That’s 12 miles of biking and a whole lot of fun!

Thursday was Thanksgiving, of course. Travis and I had started dismantling our garden Wednesday evening, so Thursday morning we finished the job. All the dying or dead plants were pulled up, the wire fencing that supported them was rolled up, the ground raked, and a weed-blocking cover placed over the garden. It was some work to clear it out but it was so satisfying to get it done!
Continue reading