It appears, based on this morning's edition, that The Joplin Globe is trying something new to attract women to its sports pages.
Today's edition featured a column by Rachel Kubicek, Joplin, who is referred to as "a news assistant" for the newspaper. I like the idea of a feminine point of view on the sports pages. As old-time Lamar Democrat readers will remember, Holly Sundy, at the age of 17, was promoted to sports editor and did a wonderful job. I later had a great deal of luck with female sportswriters such as Kim Stahl, Stacy Randolph, and Michelle Dixon. I also had sports features written by other female reporters.
So I commend the Globe for its effort to expand its sports horizons.
That being said, Ms. Kubicek's column, though well-written, is an insult to female sports fans if that is what the Globe thinks they are wanting. The column begins, "We all know, or at least we football fans, that the Chiefs were beat down on Monday night so I won't bore everyone with a recap of the game highlights and downfalls. Besides, I missed most of the game anyway while I was making cookies for all the boys in the living room. Burnt cookies are almost as bad as a loss in my book."
The column goes from burnt cookies to football fashion. There is not much to appeal to any sports fan. That column might have worked if Ms. Kubicek had written a few previous columns (and maybe she has and I just haven't noticed them) establishing her sports credentials. I don't mean that she has to reel off meaningless statistics, or even meaningful statistics, I would just like her to prove she can write credibly about sports.
The way to bring more female readers to the sports pages is not complicated: better writing, more features, and more coverage of women's sports. It was a formula that worked well for me at The Lamar Democrat and The Carthage Press. It has worked well for other papers. I would love to see the Globe give it a try.
When it comes to sports coverage, give me the beef now, and save the burned cookies for dessert.