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the Rev. Wendy Ward, Published November 24 2010

Barnesville team story unbalanced

Appallingly unbalanced coverage. Sniping comments in the quotes. I’m referring, of course, to The Forum’s article about Barnesville’s state semifinal football win over Goodhue.

The article focused on Goodhue and the game they played. Where was Barnesville? In two measly paragraphs at the end. Quotes from the Goodhue coach attacked the integrity of Barnesville players and coaches, maligning their defensive play. Is this responsible journalism? What other proof did the reporter (using the word loosely) have to those allegations?

As a former newspaper reporter who covered high school sports events, I am flabbergasted at this article. Usually game coverage focuses on how the winning team won, but with balanced description and comments from both sides. If there is any slant in the article, it is toward the local team, win or lose.

I can only surmise that the reporter was a stringer from Goodhue or that he submitted the wrong story to the wrong paper. Where was the editing and the desk on this? In this day of cell phones, could no one have located Barnesville coaches or players to get their perspective and comments for a rewrite?

The fine, hard-working players and coaches of the Barnesville Trojan football team deserve far better coverage at the Metrodome than this. At least the story in the Tribune got it right for fair coverage and a good summary.