This week’s NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship tournament includes a handful of local teams–Temple, Villanova, Penn State, Princeton and Bucknell. So it’s a big deal for some local basketball bloggers.
Brian Ewart is a writer for www.vuhoops.com, a Villanova basketball blog.
“It’s exhausting this time of year,” Eward said.
The site is constantly updating with Villanova stats, facts, and features. There are surprisingly few ads.
“We don’t actually try, to be honest with you, to turn a profit on this thing,” he said.
That’s what his real job is for–Ewart is a lawyer.
During tournament time, he takes long lunches, tries to get days off, and even sneakily watches games on his computer while he’s working.
“We’re going to put this much energy in to watching the games and following the sport anyway, so it’s kind of like well, I might as well just write about it,” Eward said.
He says his law-firm co-workers have no idea of the double life he’s leading. When asked whether the work or the blogging takes top priority, he answered like a true lawyer.
“I don’t want to incriminate myself here so I’m gonna take the fifth,” he said.
Jon Solomon runs www.pricetonbasketball.com. His writing isn’t a secret hobby.
“I run a subscription-based website that, as local papers have dropped beat reporters and there’s been less and less traditional coverage, I’m pretty much the only person holding a recorder at most away games,” said Solomon.
In fact, he’s been to every Princeton post-season game since 1984.
It costs $30 a year to subscribe to his site, and he says the proceeds make up more than a third of his total income.
It took him over 10 years to get there, though.
“I like to think that I’m fairly good at it and hope that the discerning eye or ear could differentiate between someone who’s doing really hard work, and some joker that’s just copying and pasting content from other sites,” Solomon said.
Both Solomon and Ewart say that original content and good reporting are what make a blog worth reading.