Gary D’Amato – Journalism masterclass

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Last week, in class, we had a journalism masterclass delivered to us from Gary D’Amato, a seasoned professional – particularly in golf and the Olympics. D’Amato told stories from his career, anecdotes from the world of sport, and valuable tips for future journalists.

Coming from England, it was interesting to hear about how the same profession works in a different country. There are many similarities, but also some subtle differences. The basic principles remain the same, with a few differing characters, of which D’Amato eluded to.

A personal favorite was the story about baseball player Jeff Suppan, formerly of the Milwaukee Brewers. D’Amato was instructed by his editor to get an interview with the pitcher, only for the club to refuse.

However, in a bizarre twist of fate, Suppan got in touch with D’Amato and invited him to his home and gave a candid interview of his career. It was a nice story, from player to journalist – showing they do like the media after all.

The interview was a positive character boost for Suppan, while a memorable experience for D’Amato. Securing this information was a real scoop, for the Journal Sentinel.

One main point that was worth noting is how D’Amato loves his profession. Phrases such as “I get to do this” not “I have to do this” were apparent in the presentation. A passion for sport, and the ability to write can lead to all kinds of different paths.

As a former editor, D’Amato revealed what he would look for when sifting through endless amounts of resumes. It is quintessential to have experience in the industry, but he also appreciates you have to start somewhere, to gain experience. It was a real eye opener.

While my career is unlikely to be in the USA, it was a great experience to listen to someone of such stature talk about my chosen profession. It was something I will remember, and take note when the time comes to get my first job as a journalist

 

 

Martin Odegaard – too much too young?

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Martin Odegaard – a sixteen year old soccer prodigy. Born in Norway, December 17, 1998. Odegaard was recently snapped up by Spanish giants Real Madrid C.F. arguably the biggest club in the world.

Madrid president Florentino Perez splashed out $6.5million on the highly sought after wonderkid. Clubs such as Barcelona, Bayern Munchen, Manchester United and Liverpool were all in competition with Madrid for his, and his father’s (who represents him) signatures.

Normally, when a player moves club it is the transfer fee that is under scrutiny. Not in this case, four million is a fair fee for someone who has obvious potential, but has not yet contributed or had any success in the game.

After long, drawn out negotiations, Odegaard put pen to paper on a staggering $120,000 per week. This makes Odegaard the highest paid teenager in soccer. However, Real Madrid are a club notorious for handing out money like bars of candy to their stars.

Since his arrival in January, Odegaard is yet to make an appearance for the first team. He was recently called up to the squad for the first time, but was an unused substitute. The club feel that securing a regular place in the youth team is best for his development, a sentiment that Odegaard disagrees with.

Club legend Zinedine Zidane coaches the youth team, and he claimed that Odegaard has refused to train with his academy colleagues, believing he should be making the first team on a regular basis. Is this a case of too much too young? It certainly feels that way, thus far.

While Odegaard may blossom into a future Ballon D’Or candidate, there is no doubt that Madrid have overpaid for his services. Considering he earns more than some of the first team, he is yet to show any signs of being value for money.

Coaches Salaries – US v UK

Men’s Basketball

UW-Madison – William Ryan $421,000 with $2,401,618 inc. bonuses.

UW-Whitewater – Patrick Miller $85,468 and no bonuses.

UW-Milwaukee – Rob Jeter $452,130 with $495,441 inc. bonuses.

 

Women’s Basketball

UW-Madison – Bobbie Kelsey $305,500 with $309,350 inc. bonuses.

UW-Whitewater – Keri Carollo $74,633

UW-Milwaukee – Kyle Rechlicz $131,300 with $135,355 inc. bonuses.

 

Men’s Football

UW-Madison – Gary Andersen $400,000 with $2,199,401 inc. bonuses.

UW- Whitewater – Kevin Bullis $42,000 with $53,785 inc. bonuses.

UW- Eau Claire – Robert Glaser $65,814 with no bonuses.

 

Women’s Soccer

UW-Madison – Paula Wilkins $119,149 with no bonuses.

UW – Whitewater – Ryan Quamme $53,420 with no bonuses.

UW – Eau Claire – Sean Yengo $44,513 with no bonuses.

 

Men’s Baseball

UW-Milwaukee – Scott Doffek $68,660 with $73,720 inc. bonuses.

UW – Whitewater – John Vodenlich $67,357 with $79,357 inc. bonuses.

UW- Stevens Point – Pat Bloom $46,552 with $61,552 inc. bonuses.

 

Women’s Softball

UW-Madison – Yvette Healy $112,085 with no bonuses.

UW- Whitewater – Brenda Volk $45,458 with $47,458 inc. bonuses.

UW – La Crosse – Chris Helixon $40,243 with $43,243 inc. bonuses.

 

 

Figures courtesy of:

 

(http://www.postcrescent.com/story/news/investigations/2014/11/26/university-of-wisconsin-professor-coach-chancellor-salaries/18022057/)

 

 

 

Gender Equality

 

Gender equality is an ongoing topic, in particularly in the sporting world. Should colleges be made to pay their male and female team’s coaches the same amount per annum?

 

In terms of annual salary, there is a difference between the amount coaches of male teams earn, as opposed to the amount coaches of female teams earn.

 

For example, UW-Madison men’s basketball coach William ‘Bo’ Ryan earns a base salary of $421,000 per year, including $2,401,618 in bonuses.

 

This is in comparison with Bobbie Kelsey – the women’s basketball coach, who earns $305,500 with bonuses amounting to $309,350.

 

As a rule, women’s sport doesn’t tend to allow for bonuses to be incorporated into the contract. Which suggests that there is not enough money provided towards the female sports, as opposed to the mens.

 

Money is generated from tuition fees, sponsorships and advertisements. Some schools have their own TV stations, which is another source of income. Depending on the status (DI, DII, DII) that determines how much a school will typically earn, and consequently spend.

 

American sport comparisons

 

From the research conducted, it is evident that the sport that pays the most is men’s basketball. In comparison with football and baseball, the basketball coaches can expect to earn larger salaries.

 

As Madison is the capital of Wisconsin, the Badgers is seen as the biggest team in the state. William “Bo” Ryan earns almost five times the amount the coach at Milwaukee earns per year.

 

Baseball is the lowest earning sport from the sports mentioned, with average salaries in the region of $55,000 to $60,000 per year – depending on bonuses set by each individual university.

 

This is a coincidence as Milwaukee is a bigger city than Madison, but the school in Madison is superior to that of Milwaukee.

 

US v UK sporting styles

 

College sport is a big business in the U.S.A. Coaches’ public university salaries are open to the public.

 

Private universities are not required to make their records public.

 

While the general consensus is that most American students must graduate from college if they are to gain a full time job in their chosen industry.

 

This is not a necessity in the UK, a degree does help, but it does not guarantee future employment. Students can legally leave high school at 16 and go into the world of work, or apply for an apprenticeship.

 

However, in the UK, many of the coaches are currently employed members of staff who give up their free time to help out the sports teams.

 

This is totally voluntary, staff members have the final say as to whether they want an additional role.

 

From experience, Soccer requires any coach to have a minimum of level one F.A. coaching badge. This is the same for Cricket, but Rugby does not require any qualifications.

 

In some cases, the coaches will get their gas, and any food or drink purchases reimbursed by the school.

 

If an athlete is seen to be good enough, a professional sports club will have signed them up, and will train on a full time basis at the youth center. Education for those signed up is provided by the individual club, as opposed to going to school.

 

Overall, college sport is seen as an area of importance in the US. Not only do universities pride themselves on their academic ability, they also want to have the best athletes available.

 

Investing money into sporting developments determines which division the university will compete in – those with larger resources will take part in DI, and those with more limited resources will take part in DIII.

Sweet Spot Coffee House – Whitewater

Now winter is well and truly behind us, the leaves begin to change, and warmer climates ensue. The residents of Whitewater prepare themselves for summer, by taking walks along Main Street, playing soccer on grassy areas.

 Sweet Spot Coffee House is situated in a prime location for passers by, with a welcoming entrance, inviting for mom’s who have completed the school run, students who are catching up with friends. All are enjoying a fresh cup of coffee before getting on with the rest of their day.

 A wide variety of conversations are taking place, jokes being shared, future meetings being arranged. The coffee house is a perfect environment to relax, and socialize with friends or family. It is almost a home from home.

 Once the cups are emptied and returned to the kitchen for cleaning, the cycle continues for the rest of the working day.