One newer part of my job is the duty to pick an athlete of the week each week.
It really is a fun thing to do, getting to honor an athlete in the area who stood out above the competition so well that they deserve some recognition.
I am truly excited to do this every week because it offers a bit of a challenge and it involves tough decisions.
Saying that the athlete of the week stood out above the rest of the competition is easy to say, but I want to do my best to explain how I have and will judge who gets the honor each week.
This way, if there are multiple deserving athletes each week, and anyone wonders why one athlete got it over another athlete who had a great game or weekend, I can at least explain why I chose the winner.
The first week I did this, I actually chose senior running back Tate Wieferich from Sidney High School football. He did not have any games at the time, but at that point, there were not many sports happening, which led to me featuring him and the big year he is expected to have.
This latest version of athlete of the week, I chose Sam Smith, a senior cross country runner from Richey-Lambert, who took first in the boy’s competition at the Sidney Invite August 29. He took first place by 28 seconds, which is a pretty good margin of victory.
That is a good idea of an accomplishment that I will look for when choosing the athlete. Judging sport-by-sport may bring me some headaches, as comparing a football player who scored four touchdowns to a golfer who shot a 20 under or a volleyball player who got 30 kills in a game will be very tough.
At that point, I may have to see if the team won in that game or not. Another thing I will take into account is if the athlete has already been featured or not.
For example, at the Poplar Invite last weekend, Smith (Richey-Lambert) took first place again on the boy’s side of the competition, this time winning by a minute and five seconds.
That is a great margin of victory, but I just featured him and would wait longer before picking him again.
So stay tuned for this week’s winner.
Anyway, this is an overview of how I will pick the athlete’s of the week going forward.
A great accomplishment, plus (possibly) a win will be the determining factor for the winner.
No matter what, athletes who have big games or do something amazing will be featured in some way, whether the athlete of the week or in the story about their team’s event.
I just wanted to make sure I explained how I picked the winner so there is no confusion, and so you all can see how and why I chose them.
Look forward to seeing the winning athlete each week, and make sure to recognize their accomplishments.
I also want to thank Richland Pump and Supply and Pepsi-Cola of Sidney for sponsoring the athlete of the week.