Hearne: Dean Smith Death News Coverage Reveals ‘Tale of Two Cities’

Michael Jordan plants one on former NorthCarolina coach Dean Smith of Kansas

Michael Jordan plants one on former NorthCarolina coach Dean Smith of Kansas

So much for home court advantage…

One would think living large in the Cradle of College Basketball that the Lawrence Journal World would have a huge reporting leg up on what’s left of the Kansas City Star. At least when it came to celebrating the life and times of basketball deity Dean Smith. 

The Emporia, Kansas native who played on KU’s 1952 NCCA championship team – the Jayhawk’s first – died Saturday at the age of 83.

But no, the Star’s sportswriters “who want something controversial to write” that a Journal World editorial recently dissed schooled the homeowners in Lawrence by unleashing not only a front page, top-of-the-fold commentary on Smith, but a front page Sports Daily story documenting his life and a third story documenting the lessons Smith learned as a scrub, backup player on the “KU bench.”

All three stories by the way, were written by the Star’s top sportswriters and columnists.

And what did the Journal World have to offer?

Not much.

Bill Self

Bill Self

A front page banner referring readers to a “B Section” story composed largely of “wire reports” and a canned quote from current KU coach Bill Self that also ran on Fox 4 in Kansas City. That and a column by sports editor Tom Keegan lamenting Smith’s losing his battle to Alzheimer’s.

Make no mistake, the newsroom of the Star is a ghost town on Sunday’s and with a fraction of the staffing, the Journal World’s is undoubtedly far less populated, nonetheless the sports scribes at 18th and Grand did a far better job covering a story that the Jayhawks’ hometown newspaper of record should have owned…but did not.

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5 Responses to Hearne: Dean Smith Death News Coverage Reveals ‘Tale of Two Cities’

  1. Jack Springer says:

    Sorry for the family of the dead man. But all of this is a non-story. What’s next? I heard that Ruth Bader Ginsberg once saw Kansas on a map — will there be a story about her relationship with Kansas when she passes?

    Time to get over the kansas complex.

    • admin says:

      Good idea, Jack…

      But c’mon, we’ll never get over ourselves in Kansas. It’s our Cowtown complex.

      That’s why basketball is like religion at KU and in Lawrence.

      • Jack Springer says:

        It’s no cowtown complex … kansas has a huge problem with delusions of grandeur.

        • admin says:

          Wow, never noticed the delusions of grandeur here.

          You must be talking about what Roy Williams used to call the wine and cheese set

  2. Mysterious J says:

    Lawrence Journal World, you’ve just been HEARNE’d.

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