Tag Archives: Shirley Povich Center for Sports Journalism

Follow Along as Our Merrill Journalists Cover The Friendship Games

Our latest group shot of Merrill journalists Alex Flum, Hannah Yasharoff and Monica McNutt in Eilat, Israel.

Our latest group shot of Merrill journalists Alex Flum, Hannah Yasharoff and Monica McNutt in Eilat, Israel.

By George Solomon
Shirley Povich Center for Sports Journalism

COLLEGE PARK, MD. (June 22) – The Shirley Povich Center for Sports Journalism and the Philip Merrill College of Journalism sent three journalists to report on the 12th annual Friendship Games, June 29-July 7, in Eilat, Israel. The Friendship Games are a basketball tournament for mostly college-age men and women representing (this year) Israel, Palestine, Lithuania, Jordan, Russia, Ukraine, Germany and Poland.

Follow along with our daily features and reports from Eilat, Israel:

Friendship Games Show Real Potential for Peace  By Hannah Yasharoff

Marta Coelho at the Friendship Games by Monica McNutt

Israeli Player Elevates Sports Over Politics by Alex Flum

2017 Friendship Games Aim to Score Peace by Alex Flum, Monica McNutt and Hannah Yasharoff

Friendship Games: Wednesday wrap-up – By Povich Center

Friendship Games: Tuesday Highlights By Alex Flum, Monica McNutt and Hannah Yasharoff

Friendship Games: Monday Highlights by Monica McNutt

Friendship Games: Sunday Highlights by Alex Flum, Monica McNutt and Hannah Yasharoff

Friendship Games: Saturday Highlights by Alex Flum, Monica McNutt and Hannah Yasharoff

Friendship Games – Wrap Video by Alex Flum

Lithuania Wins Men’s Games by Alex Flum:

Women’s Final Wrap by Alex Flum:

European Basketball players at the 12th annual Friendship Games in Eilat, Israel, dish out their NBA hot takes on who’s the best, what they think of LaVar Ball and more. By Alex Flum. Music provided by Audio Library  –

Basketball has been a part of Ukranian coach Leonid Derbaba’s life for 63 years. In this video, he discusses his love for the sport, the Friendship Games and his future plans. By Alex Flum.




Israeli Basketball Player Elevates sports Over Politics by Alex Flum

Friendship Games Opening Night Festivities Pave Way for Positive
Cultural Interactions
by Hannah Yasharoff

The three Merrill College journalists covering the games are Monica McNutt, who graduated from the Merrill College in 2013 with a Master’s of Journalism, Alex Flum who is scheduled to graduate in 2018 and Hannah Yasharoff of the class of 2019.

McNutt did her undergraduate work at Georgetown University where she played four years of varsity basketball and earned Big East Conference honors. She has worked as a multimedia journalist for WJLA and most recently as a sports reporter and anchor for the American Sports Network. She previously attended similar international sports events as a player and broadcast journalist.

Flum, a graduate of the Charles E. Smith Jewish Day School in Rockville, MD., has been involved in campus media at Maryland since his freshman year and is a staff member of the popular student website, “The Left Bench.”

Yasharoff, who played basketball and graduated from Winston Churchill High School in Potomac, MD., has been a student staff member of the Povich Center and its website, povichcenter.org, since entering the Merrill College of Journalism in the fall of 2015. She is working this summer as an intern at the Newseum in Washington and writes for the D.C. Sports Hall of Fame website (dcsportshall.com).

The organizers of the Friendship Games are covering the air fares and expenses for the three journalists, but the Povich Center and Merrill College have control of coverage and content from the event. The Friendship Games was started 12 years ago and is still run by Washington-Maryland businessman and former Atlanta Hawks co-owner Ed Peskowitz.

“We could not pass up the opportunity to have three of our journalists cover this international sports event in such an interesting part of the world involving so many athletes from countries that often do not interact under such friendly circumstances,” said George Solomon, Director of the Shirley Povich Center for Sports Journalism at the University of Maryland’s Philip Merrill College of Journalism. “We’re extremely excited to see what Monica, Alex and Hannah produce from Eilat.”

“These students are getting the opportunity to report on more than just games. They’re getting to cover sports for a greater good,” said Rafael Lorente, Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Director of the Master’s program at the Merrill College. “Their challenge is to cover how sports intersects with culture, politics, issues of gender and more. I’m excited for them and I know they’re up to the challenge.”

For more information, please email bmechum@umd.edu or call her at 301-405-4605 or visit www.povichcenter.org

About the Shirley Povich Center for Sports Journalism:

The Shirley Povich Center for Sports Journalism at the University of Maryland’s Philip Merrill College of Journalism is a resource for journalists, academics and the public who want to explore the complex role of sports in society. The Center is led by its director, George Solomon, who was assistant managing editor for sports at the Washington Post from 1975-2003.

Explore Our World in Knight Hall on Maryland Day

COLLEGE PARK, Md. (April 14) –  Come Explore Our World in Knight Hall on Maryland Day, April 29 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Plan your day at marylandday.umd.edu

Merrill College Events:

10 a.m. – 11 a.m.
Explore the Possibilities of a Journalism Degree
1208 – Eaton Theater , Knight Hall
Gather information about the journalism major and hear from current students. College representatives are available to answer questions about undergraduate programs.





11 a.m. – 1 p.m.
Knight Hall / UMTV Tour
1st Floor, Knight Hall
Every hour from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., Merrill College students offer tours of Knight Hall and UMTV. Learn about the graduate and undergraduate study of journalism.



Snapchat 101 During Maryland Day in Knight Hall at 11 a.m.

11:00 AM – 11:30 AM
Snapchat 101
1208 Eaton Theater , Knight Hall
Snapchat is more than just face swaps and filters. Bethany Swain, a former CNN photojournalist who now teaches at the Merrill College, explains what the popular app is all about and shares tips you can use today.




Life in the Anchor Seat.


11 a.m. – 2 p.m.
Life in the Anchor Seat
UMTV – Tawes Hall Basement
Ever wonder what it’s like to deliver the nightly news? Come have an interactive experience in the anchor’s chair in the Eaton Broadcast Center at UMTV.




Clips App from Apple will be demoed on Maryland Day in Knight Hall.

12 p.m. – 12:30 p.m.
Make a Mobile Family Album
1208 Knight Hall
Don’t just post or share photos. Use “Clips” – a  free iPhone app to quickly combine photos, video and text in a fun mobile album. Join mobile journalism Professor Ronald Yaros for this 15-minute hands-on session.



1 p.m. – 3 p.m.
Merrill Alumni Meet, Greet and Eat
3202 – Roberts Room, Knight Hall
#MerrillMade alumni are welcome to reconnect with fellow alums and favorite professors and meet the college’s dean, Lucy Dalglish. The reception includes a 2 p.m. panel discussion of alumni experts and current students discussing the complex and changing world of sports media, hosted by the Shirley Povich Center for Sports Journalism.

Alumni panel includes: Alexa ’07 (MLB.com and 120Sports.com) and Peter ’02 Rosenberg (of Hot 97 and 98.7 ESPN) and Rob Carlin ’95 (of NBC Sports). Student panel members include the founders of The Left Bench – Justin Meyers ’17, Michael Stern ’17 and Kofi Yeboah ’17).  Please RSVP to Kayla Newton for this event.

All Day

The World of Journalism
McKeldin Mall: Philip Merrill College of Journalism Tent
Learn about undergraduate and graduate journalism majors from current students.

Meet Merrill College Dean Lucy Dalglish from 11 a.m. to noon. Merrill alumna and NBC4 news anchor Eun Yang ’95 greets guests in the afternoon.

Sports Journalist Tina Cervasio Offers Best Tips for Merrill Students

Cervasio was named a "Distinguished Terrapin" in 2014. Povich Center Director George Solomon did the honors.

Cervasio was named a “Distinguished Terrapin” in 2014. Povich Center Director George Solomon did the honors.

COLLEGE PARK, Md. (April 12) – Sports journalist Tina Cervasio loves Maryland and the Terps. A 1996 graduate of Merrill College, she is no stranger to College Park, where she supports our journalism program and the Shirley Povich Sports Center. She was named a “Distinguished Terrapin” by the Povich Center in 2014

Cervasio currently works for the CBS Sports Network, SiriusXM NBA Radio and is a Red Bulls Broadcaster for the pre-game and half-time shows. And if that’s not enough, she also is a part-time sports anchor at FOX5 NY. She says while her passion is sports journalism, she wants to be a broadcast journalist to reach a wider audience.

Thanks to Povich Director George Solomon, Tina recorded some of her best tips for Merrill students – to help them succeed as journalists.

Povich Center Presents Lacy-Smith, Distinguished Terrapin Awards

COLLEGE PARK, Md. (Nov. 16) – The Shirley Povich Center for Sports Journalism honored former New York Times sports columnist Bill Rhoden with this year’s Lacy-Smith Award. Named for two pioneering African-American sports journalists, Sam Lacy and Wendell Smith, Rhoden is the third winner of the prestigious award. Previous winners were James Brown (2015) and Claire Smith (2014).

The award is just one of many presented during this year’s Povich Center Awards Luncheon Wednesday. The event is traditionally held the afternoon prior to the Povich Symposium.

Other award winners include:

  • Susan Fornoff ’79 and Jimmy Roberts ’79 are this year’s “Distinguished Terrapin” award winners.
  • Alan Bubes and Brit Kirwan – Special Recognition
  • Monica McNutt – Rising Star

The Povich Center also recognized four “All-Star Students” including Justin Meyer, Michael Stern, Kofie Yeboah and Callie Caplan.

Maury Povich with Bill Rhoden and George Solomon.

Maury Povich with Bill Rhoden and George Solomon.

Lacy-Smith Award Winner
Bill Rhoden, who retired from The Times this past July, spent a career writing about race, inclusion and justice, just as the late sportswriters Sam Lacy and Wendell Smith, for whom the award is named.

  • After growing up in Chicago, Rhoden attended and graduated from Morgan State University in Baltimore, went to work at the Baltimore Afro-American where he was mentored by Sam Lacy, the newspaper’s sports editor.
  • He later worked four years at Ebony Magazine and three years at The Baltimore Sun before joining The New York Times in 1981 as a copy editor on the Sunday Week in Review section.
  • Rhoden has also written a number of books, including the widely acclaimed “Forty Million Dollar Slaves: The Rise, Fall and Redemption of the Black Athlete” and accumulated countless television and film credits.

Watch the video. Introduction by Maury Povich:



Special Recognition

Kevin Blackistone with Brit Kirwan and George Solomon.

Kevin Blackistone with Brit Kirwan and George Solomon.

Brit Kirwan is a nationally recognized authority on critical issues shaping the higher education landscape. Prior to his 13 years as chancellor of the University System of Maryland, Kirwan served as president of Ohio State University for four years and president of the University of Maryland, College Park for 10 years.

  • He was also a member of the University of Maryland faculty for 24 years. Kirwan chairs the National Research Council Board of Higher Education and Workforce and co-chairs the Knight Commission on Intercollegiate Athletics.
  • He also serves on the Business-Higher Education Forum. He is a member of the boards of the Maryland Chamber of Commerce, Greater Baltimore Committee, Economic Alliance of Greater Baltimore, Maryland Business Roundtable for Education, and other organizations.
  • Kirwan received his bachelor’s degree in mathematics from the University of Kentucky and his master’s and doctoral degrees in mathematics from Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey.
Alan Bubes with Maury Povich.

Alan Bubes with Maury Povich.

Alan Bubes is a native Washingtonian. Alan attended High School at Sidwell Friends and received a B.S. from Georgia Tech. He has spent the last 30 years as President and CEO of Linens of the Week, one of the largest Linen Suppliers to the Food Service Industry in the country until the recent sale of his business.

  • Bubes is a lifelong follower of sports in the Washington area, where he has been an avid fan and supporter. Alan is active in many charities with a special interest in sports, education and children in the city.
  • He also is a supporter of the Landon School, St. Andrew’s School, the Lab School where his three children Nathan, Elizabeth and Andrew attended.
  • Alan is married to Nancy Taylor Bubes, a well-known community leader and realtor in the Washington D.C. area. He supports the Shirley Povich Sports Journalism Summer Camp.

Distinguished Terrapins

Susan Fornoff ’79 with Emeritus Professor Maureen Beasley.

Susan Fornoff ’79 with Emeritus Professor Maureen Beasley.

Susan Fornoff ’79 started her illustrious sports journalism career as sports editor of The Diamondback. She then worked at the Baltimore News American and was part of the original sports staff at USA Today until1985. She was hired by the Sacramento Bee to cover the Oakland A’s.

  • In 1986, she became known as “The Rat Lady” after a player sent her a gift-wrapped rat to bring attention to what he considered to be the injustice of women entering the clubhouse; that backfired, ultimately costing him his job and motivating her to join three other women sportswriters in forming the Association for Women in Sports Media in 1987.
  • The baseball writing experience inspired her to write a memoir called “Lady in the Locker Room. After the success of the book she went on to work in media relations for World Cup Soccer, the San Francisco Examiner and then Chronicle  as news copy desk editor, sports copy desk editor, golf writer, real estate section staffer, features copy editor, home-and-garden reporter, general feature writer, and, finally, travel editor.
  • In 2010, she founded GottaGoGolf as a media company for women who play golf for fun. She lives in Littleton, Colo. where she offers writing services, content marketing, thought leadership and custom publishing for PR professionals.

Sue Kopen Katcef with Jimmy Roberts ’79 and George Solomon.

Jimmy Roberts ’79 began his journalism career as a writer for his high school newspaper and later graduated from the University of Maryland. Roberts is a 13-time Emmy Award-winning broadcaster and writer known most recently for his work on NBC and Golf Channel as an essayist, interviewer, feature reporter and studio host.

  • He is a fixture on NBC and Golf Channel’s coverage of the PGA TOUR and other high-profile golf events, including the Ryder Cup. Roberts joined NBC Sports Group in May 2000 after a long career at ABC and ESPN in which he won 11 Sports Emmy Awards.
  • In 2009, Harper Collins published Roberts’ first book, Breaking the Slump, which deals with how some of the best golfers to ever play the game dug themselves out of dry spells.
  • Roberts served as an Olympic correspondent during the 2016 Rio Olympics. Rio was his 16th Olympic assignment. He lives in the New York area with his wife, Sandra, and their three sons.

Past award winners are

Bonnie Bernstein (Campus Insiders Vice President of Content and Brand Development), Scott Van Pelt (ESPN commentator and Reporter), Tim Brant (WJLA-TV Vice President of Sports), Christy Winters-Scott (former Maryland women’s basketball player and Big Ten Network, Washington Mystics and Wizards analyst), Chick Hernandez (Anchor/Reporter/Host Comcast SportsNet/NBC Sports), Tina Cervasio (Sports Broadcaster) and Ike Richman (Vice President of Public Relations at Comcast Spectacor).

George Solomon with Monica McNutt.

George Solomon with Monica McNutt M.J. ’13.

Rising Star

Monica McNutt M.J. ’13 of The American Sports Network is the 2016 “Rising Star” awardee, an award created by the Povich Center to honor a young alum who is progressing and succeeding in the sports journalism field.

  • McNutt is the second recipient of the award. McNutt, a native of the DMV area, started her journalism career while an undergraduate at Georgetown University writing a blog for The Washington Post on life as a student-athlete.
  • After her stellar basketball career at Georgetown ended, she decided to pursue journalism full-time and enrolled in the Master’s program at Philip Merrill College.
  • After graduating in 2013, McNutt was a sports reporter for News Chanel 8 in Washington D.C. covering local sports. She is now a reporter/anchor for the American Sports Network located in West Palm Beach, Florida.


All-Star Students

Merrill students Justin Meyer, Kofi Yeboa, Michael Stern, Callie Caplan.

Merrill students Justin Meyer ’17, Kofi Yeboa ’17, Michael Stern ’17 and Callie Caplan’17.


Callie Caplan ’17 spent her time at Merrill College working her way up the ranks at The Diamondback, Maryland’s independent student-newspaper. During her senior year, Caplan is both a sports editor and a senior staff writer. She was the recipient of the AWSM internship in the Summer of 2016 when she worked at USA Today. She also covers high school sports for The Washington Post.

Justin Meyer ’17 is the Editor in Chief of The Left Bench the co-business director as well as a broadcaster of WUMC Sports. He has written for The Columbus Dispatch and Testudo Times.

Michael Stern ’17 is the Business Director of the Left Bench and the Sports Director of WUMC Sports. He is also a multimedia reporter for the Capital News Service. He has previously worked for USA Today, NBC News and WTOP.

Kofie Yeboa’ 17 is the Director of Personnel at The Left Bench, an assistant editor at ESPN’s The Undefeated. He has previously written for The Huffington Post, USA Today Sports and ESPNU and interned at D.C. United.

Beth Mechum

About the Shirley Povich Center for Sports Journalism:

The Shirley Povich Center for Sports Journalism is based at the University of Maryland’s Philip Merrill College of Journalism. The Povich Center is a resource for journalists, academics and the public who want to explore the complex role of sports in society. The Center is led by its director, George Solomon, who was assistant managing editor for sports at the Washington Post from 1975-2003.

Povich Symposium Looks at The Future of Sports & TV

George Solomon is the director of the Povich Sports Center at the University of Maryland.

George Solomon oversees the Povich Sports Center.

COLLEGE PARK, Md. (Nov. 9) – The 11th-annual Shirley Povich Sports Symposium takes a deep look at where sports coverage is going on television. With viewership issues, player indiscretions, even the pervasiveness of sports programing on broadcast, cable and online, there will be plenty to talk about.

As always, the Povich Symposium is free and no ticket is required.

The Nov. 16 event will be held in the Colony Ballroom of the Stamp Student Union starting at 7:00 p.m.

Directions to the Stamp Student Union.

For more information contact:

Beth Mechum
Coordinator, Shirley Povich Center for Sports Journalism

The Future of Sports & TV

Moderated by Maury Povich


John Skipper; President, ESPN

Jimmy Roberts ’79; Broadcaster, NBC Sports

Andrea Kremer; Chief Correspondent, NFL Network

Jim Delany; Commissioner, Big Ten

Scott Van Pelt, Host, ESPN’s SportsCenter

David Aldridge, Reporter, Turner Sports