Tag Archives: Shirley Povich Center for Sports Journalism

Tenth Annual Shirley Povich Symposium Celebrates Sportswriting Then & Now

10th Annual Shirley Povich Symposium.

COLLEGE PARK, Md. – Pardon the Interruption co-hosts Tony Kornheiser and Michael Wilbon headline the tenth annual Shirley Povich Symposium on Nov. 10.

“Sportswriting Then & Now: With a Look at the Past & Future” starts at 7 p.m. in the Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center on the University of Maryland campus. Doors open at 6 p.m. It is free and open to the public.

Joining Kornheiser and Wilbon are Christine Brennan (USA Today Sports columnist and Commentator for ABC News, CNN and PBS), Sally Jenkins (Washington Post sports columnist), Jeremy Schaap (ESPN sports reporter) and Chelsea Janes (Washington Post Nationals beat writer).

Television host Maury Povich, son of the late Washington Post columnist Shirley Povich for whom the symposium is named, will moderate the panel after opening remarks from Donald Graham (CEO of Graham Holdings and former owner of The Washington Post).

The Shirley Povich Symposium was created to honor Shirley Povich and his work. The tenth anniversary is a perfect time to look at the state of sportswriting in the country.

“The fact that this is the 10th year for the Shirley Povich Symposium at the University of Maryland speaks so well of the support of the Povich family and the interest in the late Washington Post sports columnist Shirley Povich and sports journalism by the University of Maryland community,” Povich Center Director George Solomon said. “Povich typified what great sports journalism is all about in his 75-year career and our esteemed panel is well-suited to examine the history of the business and where it’s headed.”

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.

Merrill College’s Shirley Povich Center Honors Tim Kurkjian, Pam Ward and Jack Zane


COLLEGE PARK, Md. – Tim Kurkjian (’78) and Pam Ward (’88), both of ESPN, are this year’s “Distinguished Terrapin” award winners to be presented by the Shirley Povich Center for Sports Journalism at a luncheon, Tuesday, Nov. 10, at the Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center at the University of Maryland.

Also honored at the luncheon with a “Special Recognition” Award will be Jack Zane(’60), the long-time Sports information Director of the University of Maryland Athletic Department. Zane’s work and support (along with that of his wife Judy) has been immeasurable to the university.

Kurkjian is an analyst for ESPN’s Baseball Tonight and SportsCenter. He also writes for ESPN the Magazine and ESPN.com. A 1978 graduate of the University of Maryland, he joined ESPN in 1998, after working for Sports Illustrated for nearly ten years. Before that, he covered the Orioles for the Baltimore Sun and the Rangers for the Dallas Morning News.

Ward is a 1984 graduate of the film and television program at the University of Maryland. Ward had stops doing TV and radio in Maryland and Washington D.C. before landing at ESPN where she has worn many hats including anchoring ESPNews and a variety of play-by-play jobs. In 2000, Ward became the first woman to do play-by-play for nationally televised college football games.

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).

Kurkjian and Ward will receive their awards during a Nov. 10 luncheon at the University of Maryland. That night, the tenth annual Shirley Povich Symposium will discuss “Sportswriting Then & Now”.

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.

Shirley Povich on Yogi Berra

Yogi Berra embraces Don Larson after his historic world series no hitter.

– from the Washington Post Archives.

COLLEGE PARK, Md. – Baseball icon and Yankee great Yogi Berra died this week at the age of 90. Washington Post sports writer Shirley Povich – whose namesake Shirley Povich Center for Sports Journalism is based in Knight Hall – wrote more than 200 columns mentioning – or talking about – Yogi.

Merrill alumnus Kelyn Soong (MJ ’13) – who works at the Washington Post as a sports news aide – did some research and published an article yesterday in the Post that talks about Povich and his writings about Yogi.

The first time Povich wrote about Berra was during spring training on March 20, 1947:

“Outfielder Johnny Lindell wants to be traded away from the Yankees. He thinks he can play regularly for most any other club in the league and he probably could, but he doesn’t like being pushed into the background with the Yankees who are now planning a regular outfield of Joe DiMaggio, Charley Keller and Rookie Yogi Berra, up from their Newark farm.”

On Oct. 9, 1956, Yankee pitcher Don Larson pitched a no hitter. The Post photo that day shows Berra embracing Larson as Povich wrote:

“The million-to-one shot came in. Hell froze over. A month of Sundays hit the calendar. Don Larsen today pitched a no-hit, no-run, no-man-reach-first game in a World Series.”

Povich’s  final column mentioning Berra came when Yogi was inducted into the Hall of Fame: “The names of Koufax, Berra and Wynn spell out no less than shining adornments for the Hall.” He added, “Yogi Berra was the best catcher in the American League for most of 18 years, owns a grist of World Series records and hit more home runs than any other catcher. Strictly on performance, Berra belongs in Cooperstown.”

Read Soong’s entire article online here: http://go.umd.edu/post_berra

10th Annual Povich Symposium: Sportswriting Then and Now

Povich Center Director George Solomon.

by George Solomon
Shirley Povich Center for Sports Journalism

COLLEGE PARK, Md.  – What a perfect topic for the 10th annual Shirley Povich Symposium: “Sportswriting:  Then and Now.” Shirley Povich, who wrote sports for The Washington Post for 75 years until his death in 1998, is remembered by this symposium and the Shirley Povich Center for Sports Journalism that was started by  the Povich family and other supporters in November of 2011  at the Philip Merrill College of  Journalism.

This year’s symposium will be held on Nov. 10, at 7 p.m. in the Samuel Riggs Alumni Center, with television host Maury Povich moderating a panel that includes ESPN’s Tony Kornheiser and Michael Wilbon, Washington Post sports columnist and author Sally Jenkins and USA Today sports columnist Christine Brennan and sports journalism (ESPN) and author Jeremy Shapp. The evening’s activities will begin with remembrances of Shirley Povich by Donald Graham, CEO of  Graham Holdings and former owner of The Washington Post.

The symposium, one of the most popular events on the university’s fall calendar,  has over the years touched on such topics  as racism in sports, Maryland’s move to the Big Ten, the integration of the Washington Redskins and the Maryland football team, dramatic  changes in college sports and when athletes make front page news for the wrong reasons.

Povich 2013

Past panelists over the years have included Maryland Athletic Director Kevin Anderson, ESPN anchor and Maryland alumnus Scott Van Pelt, Kara Lawson of the Washington Mystics and ESPN, Redskins’ owner Daniel Snyder, former NFL Commissioner Paul Tagliabue, retired Maryland men’s basketball coach Gary Williams,  Washington’s NFL Hall of Famer Bobby Mitchell, Darryl Hill (Maryland’s  first African-American football player), Merrill College faculty member Kevin Blackistone and former Maryland All-American basketball player and U.S. Congressman Tom McMillen.

Prior to the symposium  moving to the Maryland campus in 2006, the event had been held for three years at the D.C. Jewish Community Center and featured sports television icon Bob Costas and writer David Kindred, as well as the participants  in the book, “Shirley Povich: All those mornings….at The Post.”

The Povich family, including Maury Povich, author Lynn Povich and lawyer David Povich, established the Shirley Povich Chair in Sports Journalism at the University of Maryland’s Philip Merrill College of Journalism  in 2005 that was absorbed into  the Povich Center in 2011.

The center, supported by the family and other members of the community, serves Merrill students, professional journalists, high school students through its journalism workshops, panels of interest to the sports community, discussions, research and analysis.   This past summer, the center completed its second week-long Shirley Povich Sports Journalism Summer Camp run by center coordinator Beth Mechum for 60 high school students.

One of the center’s missions is to mentor and prepare sports journalism students for professional careers and assist  the college staff in seeking internships and post-graduate jobs in the ever-changing  and highly competitive world of sports media. It’s a task that continues long after our graduates walk off the stage holding a diploma.


Sports Journalism at Maryland

Interested in sports journalism? There’s no better place to be than the Washington-Baltimore area  – one of the nation’s liveliest sports markets. You will have the opportunity to learn from some of the best-known sports writers and reporters in class and during many special events throughout the year, while gaining real-world, hands-on experience outside.

The Shirley Povich Center for Sports Journalism, with the Merrill College, helps prepare journalism students with a range of courses in sports reporting and broadcasting.

The Center serves as a launching pad for University of Maryland students to learn, actively participate in, and develop the journalistic skills they need to meet the challenges of new media that face the next generation of sports journalists.




Hands-on experiences come through our student-powered Capital News Service, the Diamondback student newspaper, WMUC radio, the Povich Center website on campus and internships off-campus. Students also gain valuable practical experience in television covering Maryland sports in front of – and behind the camera – for the Maryland Athletic Department’s Terps TV. There are growing opportunities as well now that Maryland is part of the Big 10.

Povich Director George Solomon, professor of the practice at the Philip Merrill College of Journalism since 2003, was assistant managing editor for sports at The Washington Post from 1975-2003. Solomon was the first Shirley Povich Professor when the Povich Chair was established in 2007. He is a member of the D.C. Sports Hall of Fame.

Solomon is joined by Kevin Blackistone, a panelist on ESPN’s “Around-the-Horn,’’ and now a Washington Post columnist and a host of local sports professionals who are adjunct lecturers in Knight Hall.

Want more information?

Contact the Povich Center.

Read the Povich Center Brochure. (PDF)

Check out the Povich website.

Students can also network and learn by joining two student sports organizations on campus:

APSEAPSE – Associated Press Sports Editors

APSE (Associated Press Sports Editors) is a national organization that strives to improve professional standards for sports departments of professional news organizations and to recognize professional excellence among its membership. The University of Maryland and Virginia Tech were the first two student APSE chapters – both applications approved June 25, 2014. APSE works with student chapters to increase student participation in regional and national meetings and to bring APSE representation to campuses. APSE offers an internship and job bank and awards student scholarships.

Faculty Sponsor: George Solomon – Director, Shirley Povich Center for Sports Journalism.

Screen Shot 2015-06-26 at 1.22.31 PMAssociation of Women in Sports Media

AWSM is a volunteer-managed, 501(c)(3) nonprofit founded in 1987 as a support network and advocacy group for women who work in sports writing, editing, broadcast and production, and public and media relations. AWSM works to promote and increase diversity in sports media through our internship/scholarship program, as well as through mentoring links and career-enhancement initiatives.