Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Riverside grad Scott Shafer showing a paranoid side at Syracuse

Riverside graduate Scott Shafer makes his Syracuse debut in 10 days against Penn State at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J.. This story suggest these are tense times for Shafer.

The first-year coach is closing all practices to reporters leading to the Aug. 31 game against the Nittany Lions. The decision is a curious one considering football ranks a distant second to the school's basketball program in popularity. Syracuse football doesn't move tickets like Justin Timberlake, and the Orange's home schedule includes few marquee draws besides Clemson.

The Orange have a quarterback battle brewing. But, according to Nate Mink's report, Shafer and school officials are concerned about the impact reporting on injuries will have on betting lines.

Mink, unfortunately, has plenty of experience covering paranoid programs. He recently moved to central New York after covering Penn State football.  Full disclosure: This blogger/reporter/columnist/videographer/assistant sports editor also covered Penn State football.

Unlike the NFL, where reporters are granted incredible access, closed practices are the norm among Bowl Championship Series football programs.

Still, give Shafer and Syracuse credit for creative reasoning. Using gambling concerns as the grounds for closing practice demonstrates a bold side.

Shafer's debut against Penn State should be an intriguing matchup. Neither team has announced its starting quarterback. The winner could be positioned for an eight- or nine season. The loser might struggle to reach .500.

A prediction? Guess we don't have enough information to make a reasonable guess on how Shafer's team will perform.

-- Guy Cipriano | @newsheraldguy


Blogger Neal Palmquist said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

September 3, 2013 at 6:03 PM 
Blogger Neal Palmquist said...

With all respect, this seems to be an article about how you can't write an article. I think many people in Lake County know Scott Shafer and I wonder if you would consider the possibilty of introducing yourself to people who might be able to get you connections. I think maybe if Coach is, as you say, "paranoid" and he demonstrates this quality by closing his practices to the media, and I think if this is the reason why you feel you cannot do your job, what are you going to do about it?

Perhaps local connections are available to your potential access before they would be available to any other sports editor in the country. You work in Lake County and many people knew him for his whole life in that area. I don't intend to disrespect you and how you do your job. But, I think your articles would be better if you had connections and interview opportunities. I would wish you luck if you think so, too.

September 3, 2013 at 6:15 PM 

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