Book Review: “The Best American Sports Writing 2001″

“The Best American Sports Writing 2001,” edited by Bud Collins
“The Best American Sports Writing 2001,” edited by Bud Collins

The Best American Sports Writing 2001 is the only volume I’ve reviewed so far where the introduction doesn’t actually introduce anything. Volume editor Bud Collins discusses the volatile, even occasionally violent relationship between athletes and the sporting press, but never once does he mention any of the 28 stories that follow.

Instead, Collins puts a one-section reaction at the top of each story. It’s a unique approach, but the lack of any discussion in the introduction sets an odd tone for the ensuing 357 pages.

And therein lies the theme of this review: tone. An appropriate emotional tone can make a great story even greater, but the wrong tone can just as easily tank an otherwise well-written story.

The best and worst stories in BASW 2001 earn that status because of their tone. “Everest at the Bottom of the Sea,” by Bucky McMahon, captures all the adventure and excitement and danger one would expect in a story about diving for treasure in a sunken luxury cruiser.

Series editor Glenn Stout has said repeatedly that sports writing isn’t the same as writing about sports. One might not think of treasure-diving as a sport, but this story is so cool it absolutely belongs in this collection.

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Monthly McAlester News-Capital Roundup

The annual Pitt 8 Tournament is always exhausting, but it’s also always extremely fun.

Here’s my coverage of it and everything else I wrote in January for the McAlester News-Capital.

Midweek Update: Canadian wins 2015 openers

Local tournament schedules

Savages come back, beat Demons

Lady Savages win, now 9-0

McAlester’s Curley to coach All State Cheer

Senior Spotlight: Diehl loves the Friday-night lights

Quinton sweeps Stuart basketball

Davis, Savages edge. No. 2 Hornets

Lady Savages win, now 11-0

Buffs third at McAlester Open

Lady Panthers win third straight Dee Foster Invitational

Midweek Update: Five teams win tournaments

Weiher, Cougars top Tigers

Oktaha beats Lady Cougars in overtime

McAlester sweeps Durant at Homecoming

Dawkins, Buffs tame Lions at Homecoming

Lady Buffs edge Lady Lions

Photos from McAlester Homecoming

Wrestling Homecoming to honor Fugitt family

Photos from McAlester Homecoming Dodgeball Tournament

100 Years of Pitt 8 winners

Porum Tournament schedule

Pitt 8 Tourney fun facts

Pitt 8, Day 1: Top seeds roll

Midweek Update: Lady Savages improve to 14-0

Pitt 8, Day 2: Four blowouts in four games

Pitt 8, Day 3: Top two seeds to play for championship

Pitt 8, Day 4: Haileyville and Crowder advance to consolation championships

Pitt 8, Day 5: Cowgirls and Hornets win

Final thoughts from the Pitt 8 Tournament

Pitt 8 All-Tournament teams

Buffs banquet honors seniors

Midweek Update: Pitt 8 Tournament wraps in McAlester

Ada sweeps Buffs wrestling

Two Buffs make OCA All-State team

Class A and B basketball districts released

Miners put Wolves away early

Lady Wolves beat Lady Miners

Savanna’s Weeks signs with Murray State