I wrote an article last week that I did not publish about the idea of calling booster donations and gate receipts "public money" and the refusal to differentiate it from tax dollars in an effort to confuse readers.
It came after reading Bob Gabordi's fantastically lame blog and subsequent comments hyping up the articles coming in the Tallahassee Democrat, which examine the expense reports of FSU's coaches.
It was a truly awful hype blog that made me not want to read the articles. I thought about why Gabordi would publish such a piece. Two ideas came to mind.
1. The Democrat had good dirt and was preemptively defending itself for the backlash to come for biting the hand that feeds it (FSU football).
2. He knew that there was nothing salacious in the stories and needed to hype it because the headline might sell, but the content was not going to sell papers via word of mouth, at least not in a scandalous fashion.
No. 2 was right.
I held off on blasting Gabordi until I had a chance to read the article(s) because I was informed that Ira Schoffel was the columnist actually doing the writing. Schoffel is excellent and a pro's pro.
I'm glad I waited. The article is very good, particularly for the casual fan. It discusses the crazy expense involved with recruiting at a high level, points out that Bowden and Co. weren't doing their jobs during the 'Lost Decade', and makes note that FSU is actually doing an incredible job maximizing its return relative to investment, particularly when considering how much more FSU's rivals spend.
None of that was salacious. Instead, it is a great read done by a great reporter. To hype it in the way that Gabordi did was unnecessary and might have caused folks not to read it. I don't understand the purpose of the chest beating over investigative journalism in this case. It was a disservice to Ira's column, which you should absolutely read.
With that said, what did you think about the article? What surprised you?