Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Second Annual Best Pittsburgh Sports Blog Tournament

The Best Pittsburgh Sports Blog Tournament went well last year, so I thought I would bring it back as an annual event. As I explained last year, my main motivation behind this tournament was to create a thorough list of the best blogs that cover and discuss Pittsburgh sports. There is a special Pittsburgh sports blog community that is unmatched by any other city in the country. That’s probably not surprising to Pittsburgh sports fans simply based on the huge percentage of households that watched the Super Bowl and Stanley Cup finals, all of the sports talk radio stations in Pittsburgh, and the success of the Pens, Steelers and Pitt over the past 12-13 months. Obviously, this translates to the significant number of blogs out there. This tournament is designed to highlight some of these blogs and bloggers and to encourage collaboration between very talented writers.

The tournament will begin next week, but I want to set the ground rules now and get some feedback about who should be included in this year’s tournament.

1. The blog must be in existence for at least one year. The bloggers in this tournament must have paid their dues. While it’s easy to start a blog, it’s not as easy to stick with it. This is not to discourage the new bloggers out there. There are some great blogs that have only been around for a few months that should make the cut next year.

2. The blog must discuss Pittsburgh sports at least half of the time. Close counts.

3. The blog must be active and updated regularly. I know that I should have a specific definition for regular, but I don’t. For example, Heels, Sox & Steelers, which was one of the top seeds last year, only had two total posts in May and June 2009. I’m considering this blog as out for this year.

4. The blog’s primary author cannot regularly write in a newspaper. This is the Dejan Kovacevic Rule as the PBC blog would likely win. I don’t want to diminish all of the work that Dejan and other writers/bloggers at the Post-Gazette and the Tribune-Review do but they also have much greater access to players, executives, etc.

5. At least for now, once your blog wins once, you can’t win again. The PensBlog cruised to a relatively easy victory to become the first ever Best Pittsburgh Sports Blog. They would likely repeat so let’s give some other blogs a chance. If there's a 10th annual Best Pittsburgh Sports Blog Tournament, maybe we'll bring back all the former champions.

Here’s the part where I ask for help. There will be 32 blogs in the tournament. The following blogs are definitely entered:

Behind the Steel Curtain
Bucs Dugout
DC Steeler Nation
Empty Netters
Faceoff Factor
Mondesi's House
Nice Pick, Cowher
One for the Other Thumb
Pitt Blather
Pittsburgh Sports and Mini Ponies
Post Game Heroes
Raise the Jolly Roger
Steelers Gab
Steelers Today
The Confluence
The Sidney Crosby Show
Where Have You Gone, Andy Van Slyke?

That is only 18 blogs. I have an idea about the remaining spots, but I’d like to hear who you think should be included. Please leave your suggestions in the comments section below or e-mail me at seanramblings at yahoo [dot] com.

Finally, I have three other questions for you to consider.

1. Should Black Shoe Diaries, a blog dedicated to Penn State, be a part of the Best Pittsburgh Sports Blog Tournament? State College is certainly not Pittsburgh, but there are a lot of Penn State fans in Western PA.

2. Should Bob Smizik’s blog be included in this year’s tournament? I’m leaning towards yes since he no longer writes for the print edition of the Post-Gazette, he blogs regularly and his blog has been around for at least one year.

3. Should Sean's Ramblings be part of the tournament? Please be honest with me. I feel like I have a decent following but I'm not sure if I write about Pittsburgh sports at least half of the time. Plus, even though I would be a #7 or #8 seed, this is a bit of a home-field advantage.

Thanks for reading and supporting the Pittsburgh sports blog community! In addition, thanks to Cotter for designing the logo which is especially appropriate with the upcoming Winter Olympics.

Update: The first round of the tournament will begin on Wednesday, February 10th.


tecmo said...

uh...puck huffers, this is getting old, sean's blanking out

Brendon said...

I'm not sure how old Pens Universe or Smilin' Like a Butcher's Dog are, but they are two excellent Penguins blogs. Puck Huffers should definitely be in it. Obviously, I'm biased towards Penguins blogs.

If you're going to include Empty Netters I don't see why Smizik's blog shouldn't be included. I can tell you right now I will never vote for that douche, though.

I'm going to vote against placing yourself in your own tournament. Just like Colin Campbell doesn't get involved in disciplinary decisions involving the Panthers because his son plays for them, I think you should leave yourself out of the tourney. Also, you don't meet your 2nd criteria.

Unknown said...
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Brad said...

Black Shoe Diaries should be on the list. Also B.U.C.C.O. should be there. That blog is becoming the only place to go for Pirates news.

Sean said...

Thanks Tecmo.

Hand of Godard - Good suggestions and I appreciate your comment about my blog. You are a wise person and don't let anyone tell you otherwise! :)

Jasmine - Your comment has nothing to do with the sports blog tournament. Actually, I believe we call this spam. Message deleted.

Brad - Thanks for your suggestions!

Tim said... post everyday and breaks a ton of news as well.

Steeler Today said...

I actually enjoyed watching from the sidelines last year. Now I get to get my arse kicked for all to see.

I'll get you for this, Sean. ;-)

Sean said...

Tim - Thanks for the suggestion!

Steeler Today - Yes, this is a competition but it's meant to be fun. Think of it like the Academy Awards; it was an honor being nominated!