Iowa FB Media Day guaranteed to host fewer attendees


This is not entirely economy-driven for the struggling media industry, either.

As part of its annual football media day festivities, Iowa hosts a luncheon at a local restaurant (or in recent years at the Kinnick Stadium press box). Around 60 media types (including several wannabees with recorders, cameras and Hawkeye T-shirts) get the usual interviews plus some gorge themselves at the luncheon. Then, many snag a few extra media guides for their friends back home.

Not this year. Iowa has cut the free buffet line from its media day budget. Plus, the shiny media guides won’t be available, either. Iowa will send them to Chicago for Big Ten Media Days but the media guides won’t be available for local media. Iowa instead will provide their fact books (which has much more useful information anyway) to media attending the event, which is scheduled for Aug. 7.

Many reporters will never see one of these again.

Many reporters will never see one of these again.

So, how many of you wanna bet that a good 20 percent of the media day posse decides not to attend media day because there’s no free meal or free media guide? Oh, the usual suspects, like we at The Gazette, the Des Moines Register and the Iowa City Press-Citizen will attend as always, as will the major market TV stations. But the smaller radio and newspaper outlets that often showed up for a free meal, a free media guide and the chance to meet Iowa Coach Kirk Ferentz will vaporize faster than you can say “seconds.”

It’s kind of sad that the sports media gets this well-earned reputation.


3 Responses to Iowa FB Media Day guaranteed to host fewer attendees

  1. Jebus says:

    Maybe you can answer this for me, Doc. Why is Gannet so lackadaisical when it comes to covering U of Iowa sports? They seem to want to leave the spoils entirely to the pay internet sites. Don’t they realize that most men read the sports section first?

  2. scottdo says:

    I can’t answer that one specifically, Jebus, but it’s a good point. The easy answer is that every newspaper in the state that covers Iowa has cut multiple sportswriters. That means some of us will cover other events out of our traditional beat structure.

    The pay sites do a great job with recruiting. That’s something most mainstream media outlets, including ours, have avoided in the past. We (including The Gazette) are cognizant of and and had either learn how to compete/work with them or become irrelevent pretty fast.

  3. Jebus says:

    Thanks for the reply. My view on the coverage is influenced greatly by the fact that I live in Omaha. There is so much more free coverage of the cornhuskers here than there is of Iowa in Iowa. (the coverage here is also much kinder to the huskers but that’s another topic) Believe me, I’ve scoured the internet and regularly visit the gazette but also visit the register and the PC and the QC times. To the gazette’s credit, they do the best job and I appreciate the work that you and Hlas and Morehouse do.

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