Sports Writing & Reporting Fall 2018

Courses Offered

The Philip Merrill College of Journalism offers a wide variety of sports courses that provide students an opportunity to learn about sports coverage in the modern era. Students gain hands-on experience covering teams at the University of Maryland, as well as in Washington, D.C. and Baltimore.

The college offers a number of sports-related courses covering sports reporting, sports broadcasting and today’s sports media.

    Taught by: Joe Yasharoff 
    This class takes an analytical look at sports TV and sports content by deconstructing shows. Students examine the producer's role in creating the look, feel and direction of shows, Students learn how to choose a lead story, how to "tease" and the importance of identifying and telling good stories. Students watch live televised sporting events to better understand the techniques used by directors and producers and get hands-on experience with BTN2GO, learning all aspects of live game production.

    Taught by: Kevin Blackistone/Mark Selig 
    Students receive full and wide-ranging instruction in all aspects of sports reporting and writing, including how to report, write, and edit and how to incorporate photography and multimedia into their work. Students also discuss ethics, objectivity, fairness and the future of sports journalism.

    Taught by: Rose DiPaula 
    Students discuss working with various organizations' communications/media relations staff, coaches and players; distributing news of the organizations; and creating/maintaining methods for disseminating that news to the public in an honest and forthright manner. Traditional, digital and social media elements are also explored.

    Taught by: Kevin Blackistone 
    his course will assess not only the use of sport as a public platform on which social drama is played out, but equally as important, how the media -- through its collection, editing, interpretation and dissemination of information, or news, about sport -- constructs and frames the conversation and understanding for society at large. This class will examine the development of our games, the history of remonstration upon them and the machinations of the media at the intersection of the two.

    Taught by: Mark Hyman
    The course explores the history and economics of college sports with emphasis on issues including Pay for College Athletes, Name Image and Likeness, the bid of Northwestern University football players to unionize, Conference Realignment and the Supreme Court's seminal ruling in NCAA v. Board of Regents of the University of Oklahoma.

    Taught by: Mark Hyman
    In this course, students examine cultural and legal barriers in the fight for gender equity in sports. In addition to Title IX, the course covers topics including women in coaching, women athletes as represented in media and high school sports participation for girls.

    Taught by: Mark Hyman
    In this course, students examine sports and their impact on culture, politics, health, ethics and more. Class discussion and reporting assignments will focus on globalization of US sports leagues, the head trauma crisis in football, the future of sports gambling and the adult-managed world of youth sports, among other topics. 

    Taught by: Ben Eidelberg
    In this course, students learn how analytics inform and enhance the decision-making process of basketball teams. Course material will focus on publicly available data, reputable basketball publications and class discussions that challenge students to understand topics such as in-game strategy, player/team performance metrics, and roster construction, among other subjects. Students will learn how to apply these tools to enhance journalistic coverage of basketball and other major sports.


    A specialization in sports requires 11 to 18 credits depending on the combination of courses.

    • A sports skills course from a menu of offerings in the JOUR 321-389 range, including JOUR 382: Sports Writing and Reporting (3)
    • A sports discussion or seminar course from a menu of offerings in the JOUR 410-469 range, including JOUR 443: Sports, Society, Culture and the Media (3)
    • A sports capstone course, from a menu including JOUR 325: Capital News Service Bureau, JOUR 353: News Bureau: Multimedia Reporting, JOUR 355: Multimedia Editing and Production and JOUR 357/367, the broadcast news bureaus (3 to 9)
    • A sports experiential course such as an off-campus internship with a news organization, approved by the internship director for JOUR 396: Supervised Internship (2) or a second sports-focused capstone approved by the department (6)

    Additionally, 

    • The Povich Center offers a wide range of learning opportunities with panel discussions, student workshops and even a summer camp.
    • Assistance is also provided to find internships with professional sports organizations in the region and nationally.
    • There are additional opportunities to cover sports with Capital News Service, the Diamondback student newspaper, the student-run WMUC radio and the Maryland Athletic Department’s TerpsTV. The BIG10 Network also provides opportunities for our students to learn by doing.
    • Our students have created a number of program opportunities to hone their sports (and news) journalism skills including The Left BenchStories Beneath and Shell, The Diamondback NewspaperWMUC Radio and the Maryland Baseball Network.