September 4, 2003

Cornell Honors Sun Sports Dept.

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We always knew they were good. Now their dominance cannot be denied. The Sun sports department has won the 2003 Cornell/Ben Mintz Media Award.

“It’s extremely gratifying to see all our work recognized. We have such a great staff of writers and some very dedicated, talented editors. It’s a credit to everyone who’s ever been associated with The Sun’s sports board. One of the first things you’re taught when you join the sports staff is about the great history of the paper and this section. I think it’s a wonderful award for everyone who works in the sports section now as well as everyone who has come before us,” said Owen Bochner ’05, assistant sports editor.

The award, now in it’s 26th year, is named for the late Ben Mintz who served as the sports information director at Cornell for 28 years until his retirement in 1977.

“The Cornell/Ben Mintz Media Award is quite an honor and I’m proud of the editors and staff members who made it possible. The Sun has a great tradition of comprehensive sports reporting. It’s nice to receive recognition for a continued job well done,” said Sun Editor-in-Chief Nate Brown ’04.

Other members of the editorial board were, however, less enthusiastic.

“I don’t know. This is so self-aggrandizing, it’s ridiculous. It just speaks to the many sports boards who have made the paper what it is today. I think that we provide the most comprehensive coverage on campus. Where else can you find coverage of the polo team next to a story about the men’s hockey team? I think it’s long overdue,” said Scott Jones ’04, former assistant sports editor.

To some, Jones’ comment seemed especially appropriate as this year is the first time The Sun has been honored with the award, while The Ithaca Journal has won it four times.

“Perhaps the award givers are raising their standards,” said John Schroeder ’74, former Sun associate editor.

Assistant Arts and Entertainment Editor Andrew Gilman ’04, whose desk rests directly across from the sports section, was simply glad to see the staff get the recognition it deserves.

“It takes a lot to devote ourself to Cornell sports, and these men [and women] have given up their entire lives to it,” he said.

Alex Ip ’04, current sports editor, was equally grateful.

“Winning this award is a great honor. A lot of people don’t realize how much time we put into this paper. But we take great pride in our work and the coverage we give to Cornell athletics,” Ip said.

The award also excited Bochner for more material reasons. Jeremy Schaap ’91, a former Sun sports editor who is now the host of Outside the Lines on ESPN and the winner of five Emmy Awards, was present at the awards ceremony in August along with Assistant Sports Editor Matt Janiga ’05.

“The best part about this is now I have Jeremy Schaap’s cell number in my phonebook,” Bochner said.

Schaap is also the son of the late Dick Schaap ’55, former Sun Editor-in-Chief, who is one of the most influential sports writers in journalism history.

As for the future of the Sun’s sport’s section, Ip said, “It’s difficult to cover 36 varsity sports teams, but we try our best, and we just hope we can continue providing the Cornell community with a good sports section … This is a tribute not just to the current sports board, but to past boards. This award belongs as much to Amanda Angel, Alex Fineman, JV Anderton, Charles Person, Shiva Nagaraj, Gary Schueller, and the list goes on and on.”

Archived article by Freda Ready