Let the games begin

Published 12:00 am Sunday, June 13, 2004

When I was offered the sports writer position at the Selma Times-Journal, I knew I was going to be faced with a great deal of challenges.

After all, I had heard quite a bit about the athletic talent throughout the area, especially when it came to the youngsters. I had heard about the incredible high school basketball and football talent that had come through here in the past and the vast amount that was here now.

I’m looking forward to seeing for myself what the area has to offer as far as athletic talent. I can guarantee you that I am a serious sports fan who watches just about every and any sport you can imagine.

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Covering the prep scene for a newspaper in the northern part of the state prior to my coming here, I was able to see many very good athletes. One especially caught my attention, as well as many college basketball coaches throughout the country. You might want to keep the name Richard Hendrix filed in the back of your mind. If you haven’t heard of him yet, you will. He’s probably one of the most sought-after high school basketball players in the country, recruited by the likes of North Carolina, Duke and Alabama.

Throughout my lifetime journeys, I have learned a lot from some of the best sports writers around. I have seen the thrill of victory and the agony of defeat. Being a bowler who competes in tournaments, I have also experienced winning and losing. I consider that to be one of my biggest assets. Having my personal experience of wins and losses helps me understand how players feel after a game, no matter what side they may be on.

Coming to Selma has opened the door to many new challenges, but it also has given me the opportunity to slow down a bit and enjoy life a little more. I’ve seen quite a bit of the world, including a 14-month stay in Iran as a youngster. That in itself was an experience I will never forget. Granted, I went to an American-run school and spent much of my time at the American Embassy while it was still open. We were able to leave about 18 months before the whole Iranian crisis began and the hostages were taken.

As for my professional background, I have worked for newspapers in Florida, Georgia, New Hampshire and Mississippi. I also have plenty of experience covering the Southeastern Conference, myself being a graduate of Mississippi State University.

Finally, I want to say thank you to those who have made me feel so welcome since my arrival. To our readers, I can promise you that I will do my best to provide fair coverage throughout the area. All I ask is that you keep in mind that I am but one person, capable of being in one place at a time. With that said, let the games begin.