A sports journalist is someone who writes and engages exclusively in covering sports. Sportswriters can write about a specific game or about sports in general. They work primarily for television stations, magazines, newspapers, websites, or in other related fields.
Journalists who choose to write about sports often come from strong sports backgrounds, which may at times may even be as simple as playing sports at college or at a semi-professional level. However, sportswriters who have no actual playing experience may at times even choose to apply for the position owing to their keen interest in and understanding of sports.
Sports journalists often have to travel to multiple locations to attend games. They should also have good social skills as they have to conduct interviews and interact with athletes and other officials from all backgrounds.
3 Types of career opportunities in the field
Radio show host
A sports radio host, unlike an announcer, must have a good knowledge of the sports that they work with in order to cover the latest news in their weekly broadcast. A bachelor's degree in journalism, broadcasting, or communications should be your first step into this career. Broadcast experience as an intern can also help you in finding an entry-level production assistant or researcher positions, from where you can move up the career ladder.
Whether it's keeping fans up-to-date with the latest breaking news or giving opinions on the different aspects of the game, sportswriters have a variety of interesting angles to talk about. Some of the most common areas covered by them include predictions, upcoming tournaments, player’s performance, and individual players. One of the finest ways to network as a budding sportswriter is to gain hands-on experience as a student writing for your school magazine and thereafter do an internship at a local newspaper.
A sports anchor is someone who hosts sports shows on TV. They must be great communicators, have excellent research skills and also have a strong passion for sports. Sports anchors are responsible for drafting sports statistics, hosting shows with sports experts and players, interviewing coaches, reading sports-related news and also interviewing experts like ex-players and coaches.
Responsibilities of a sports journalist
Once you become a sports journalist, some of the things you can look forward to doing are:
- Conducting extensive research, taking interviews, and covering events such as tournaments or sportspress conferences.
- Sports journalists are responsible for writing articles or scripts for audio visual media to convey their analysis or opinion of sports.
- Sports Journalists must also ensure that they meet deadlines and covers all sides of the content, especially since sports journalism is one of the fastest paced beats in news.
- Sports journalists working on radio stations or TV channels are responsible for delivering on-site commentary while also ensuring their show runs smoothly.
- They are also responsible for assuring that the information they give out is accurate and of the best quality.
A career in sports journalism, especially if you wish to work in audio-visual media formats can allow you a great deal of exposure to television and radio stations, making it a fun and rewarding experience. But most impiortantly, if you have a passion for any particular sport or the beat in general, this allows you to make a rewarding career out of your passion. Whichever pathway or direction you decide to walk upon, remember that having a solid knowledge of the sport you're covering along with its players, teams, and coaches is crucial . So ready to prepare yourself now?