Hearst: sports writing

In Hearst, IDS on January 23, 2011 at 2:23 pm

Another Hearst deadline is coming up. Sports reporters, I hope you’re scouring your clips. Last year IDS reporter Sean Morrison placed 15th in the Hearst sports writing category. Here is a short excerpt from “IU high jumper learns to fly.”


The high jumper stands at the top of the lane, motionless for 32 seconds.

He stares toward his nemesis, a bar balanced 2.17 meters above the track – a barrier he is determined to clear. His light blue eyes bore into it as he psyches himself up to run toward his lone obstacle here in Gladstein Fieldhouse, home of the IU track and field team. To him, the rest of the arena has fallen away. All that’s left is him and the bar.

“OK, this isn’t anything,” the young man silently tells himself. “I’m used to it. I’ve seen this height before. I can jump this.”

For the eternity of those 32 seconds, he focuses on one goal. To overcome. To ascend. To defy gravity.

The lane leading to the bar, roughly 15 yards away, is a runway. And Derek Drouin is ready to fly.

Stephanie Kuzydym also placed in the sports writing category. Her IDS story about Todd Yeagley placed 17th.


Earning three Big Ten titles and a 75-9-5 record with IU, Todd gave his father many memories. None stuck out more than his son’s first game as a Hoosier.

“When I looked out there and they announced him, he was lined up with the team,” Jerry said with pride. “They were playing the national anthem – and there was my son in an IU uniform.”

Entering the game with a 23-2 record, the Hoosiers deserved their spot on the sidelines of the 1994 title game against Virginia.

They believed victory was theirs.

But after the final second ticked off the clock, the Hoosiers saw the wrong team kissing the trophy.

Sixteen years later, Todd still has not watched the loss.

He still feels empty.

“You get there and you get a taste of it,” Todd recounted. “When you’re a senior, you know it’s over. There’s no chance to come back.”


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