This isn’t goodbye, it’s more like see you later.
My first boss at the Atchison Globe was Joe Warren and he told our newsroom to try to stay away from clichés, like the one I opened this column with, but I can’t really think of a better way to say what’s happening.
After a little more than six years, I’m leaving the Globe. I’ve taken a position with Benedictine College in the athletic department, so I’m not going very far. Readers will still see me at BC games and, hopefully, at high school games in the area.
I started at the Globe as a general assignment reporter in June 2012 before taking over as sports editor in April 2014. I’ve had the pleasure of covering a lot of great teams and athletes the past four years; league champions, state qualifiers and even some state champions.
Those championship teams and athletes are a lot of fun to cover and make up some of my fondest memories as sports editor. But there are other moments, too. Moments that people might not guess would come anywhere near my favorites.
Watching teams that struggle to win, who keep fighting and fighting all season and finally break through with a big game and grab that “W” always warms my heart. I went through the same thing in high school and to see the smiles on the players’ faces, and the coaches’ faces, is a great thing.
A team might go 1-19 or 1-8, but dang it, that one feels really good.
Of course it’s fun to follow a team with a lot of promise and expectations, too. I remember the 2015 Maur Hill-Mount Academy baseball team’s wild regional championship game against Riley County. I remember looking at the fans during a game where each team piled on runs and just laughing at how absurd it was, then watching the Ravens race onto the field after winning the game.
I remember the 2016 Troy Trojans football team going undefeated and beating Plainville in the title game in Hays. It seemed like the entire town of Troy was on the field after the game, so happy and proud of their team. Each coach and player I talked to mentioned something along the lines of wanting to win for the town, and that’s exactly why small-town sports are so important. It’s a source of civic pride.
I remember multiple track and field stars excelling and standing on the podium in Wichita. I remember soccer players dribbling through defenders and scoring a goal. I remember basketball teams coming through at sub-state and being mobbed by their classmates after the final buzzer. I remember the peacefulness and calm of covering golf tournaments.
I’ll remember all that and more as I move on to BC.
But I plan on seeing more memories made. I’ll be at Benedictine athletic events, which is fantastic. I’ll also make it out to some high school events when time permits.
I want to see the action under the lights on Friday nights. I want to see if Atchison High School volleyball can take a talented group of returners to the state tournament. I want to see how ACCHS does in the Northeast Kansas League. I want to see how MH-MA basketball does in its search for another trip to state.
Mostly I just want to see the local athletes I’ve covered these past few years succeed. I know the work they’ve put in, I’ve seen their struggles and their wins. I want to watch these athletes because I feel a connection to them.
To them, I was probably just that guy with the camera who wrote for the paper, and that’s fine. But to me, those athletes and teams were my career, my passion, my way to get back into the game.
I loved close games because they gave me that adrenaline rush I felt back when I played sports. Watching a close game was so exciting because I constantly thought about how I’d write the story. Going back to the office on deadline, writing the story in my head while I was driving — those were the best times.
I’ll miss those moments, but I’m excited to start at BC. It’s a new, exciting chapter in my life and I’m ready to move forward, I think it’s the right time.
Goodbye Globe readers, but I’ll see you around.