Dec 23, 2008

Sideline Smitty cut from the team

The newspaper hits just keep coming. Craig Smith, a.k.a., Sideline Smitty, has been cut from the Seattle Times.
After 32 years at The Times and nearly eight years of writing this column, I'm voluntarily taking a buyout offer as this newspaper reduces staff. High-school sports will be around next week, but I won't.

Over the years, I've covered hundreds of games, sweated out deadlines in bad working conditions and met a lot of good people plus an occasional snake. I've seen some gifted athletes and a lot more kids who were proud just to put on their school's uniform and try their hardest.

As I exit, I believe more than ever that high-school sports are good for kids and good for schools. Yes, there are problems with interscholastic sports but there are problems with any human endeavor.

As a sports writer, I have found prep sports to be fresher, more fun, often more interesting, and, in their own way, more important, than college or professional sports.
Smitty, perhaps the state's leading expert on Washington's prep sports scene, will be greatly missed. If it weren't for the sorry state of the publishing industry, I'd recommend that he write a book on the subject.

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