The weekend prior to the NCAA Women's College World Series, The Source, the flagship station for Arizona sports (and my employer during the local portions of the football and men's basketball pregame and postgame shows), broadcast a regular-season baseball series instead of the softball team's super regional playoff matchup at home against Louisiana State University.
"We contractually are obligated to 30 baseball games and 10 softball games," said Brent A. Seebohm, the general manager for Host Communications Wildcat Sports Properties, the handler of the UA sports contract. "We set that schedule in January. It is a stretch to get 30 baseball games and 10 softball games in. We have an obligation to the university and to broadcast partners to have that quantity of baseball games."
Seebohm says there were never discussions with the UA to change the schedule, even when it was apparent the baseball team was struggling while softball was ranked among the top three nationally most of the year.
"We wanted to fulfill the contract for the baseball season regardless of the standings," Seebohm said.
KCUB was also without a presence during the Women's College World Series in Oklahoma City. That is not as unusual, but there have been occasions when the local Wildcat sports carrier has pursued syndicated options.
"That's something in future years we may plan toward, but if we do that, we'd rather send our own talent to broadcast those games versus subscribing to a national radio broadcast that may not have the same caliber we want on the air representing the Wildcats," Seebohm said.
"One of the reasons I thought it was important to do a blog is because we needed to beef up our online presence," said Weekly editor Jimmy Boegle. "This is one obvious, easy and fun way to do it, given the writers we have, the James DiGiovannas, the Jim Nintzels, the Saxon Burnses, people whose names are known. It's not going to be where you have the depressed teenager blogging about how awful her life is at home with a thing of ice cream. This will be really good writers blogging about things they know about."
Boegle says the main Weekly Web site averages between 5,000 and 9,000 visits per day and boasted a unique-visitor tally of 136,245 in the month of May.
The blog section is easy to find. Just go to the home page and look for the yellow splotch that says "blog" along the horizontal bar at the top of the page, or go directly to blog.tucsonweekly.com.