The Orion

Cat Bites: A farewell to sports

Nicholas Woodard

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It’s been one hell of a ride. But every ride ends at some point, and for me it’s now. I’m hanging it up and sending my reporter’s notebook off to Cooperstown.

This is my farewell to The Orion, after spending three semesters here as a sports writer, assistant sports editor and finally sports editor this fall.

I have a lot of memories from working with this college paper, and there’s a lot of people that have helped me make them. Before I go any further, I’d like to name a few.

To my own sports editors, Brett Appley during fall 2013 and Sharon Martin in spring 2014: Brett showed me — a young nobody with zero experience as a published sports writer — the ropes as a journalist. He took every annoying text or question from me in stride. Sharon gave me responsibilities as her assistant, ultimately grooming me for the position I am stepping down from today.

To the editorial board that ran this semester’s paper with me: Thank you all for the memories this year and for putting up with my crap on a daily basis. Specifically, thanks to Ernesto Rivera for pushing me to be a better editor and put out a stronger section each week. Also, thanks to Kathy Kinsey for happily helping me deal with layout issues, and for serving as a great target for paper basketball shots.

And David — I still want that Dale Thayer story.

Finally, thanks to this year’s staff of sports writers. We had three returning writers and five completely new ones this year. I can honestly say each and every one of them produced great stories this fall and continued to grow as writers as time went on. Gentlemen, thank you for your hard work this year. It has been an honor working with all of you.

I would also like to thank every Chico State coach, athlete or former athlete I talked to for their patience and cooperation as I learned how to interview on the fly. And to Luke Reid and Rory Miller for aiding me with every statistical or historical question I threw at them.

Looking back at my time here, I can’t help but think that I joined The Orion in an absolutely great era to be a college sports writer. As a scribe, I had the opportunity to chronicle one athlete’s evolution from a troubling career in football to a success-filled run on the Chico State diamond. I covered the journey of one track and field runner as she worked toward the 2016 Paralympic Games. I wrote the final feature on one of this school’s all-time greatest aces.

With that said, it’s time for me to take my bow. I’ve done everything I can do at this paper, and I’m leaving the section in the good hands of Jose Olivar, the newest sports editor.

Thanks, Chico State, for letting me bring you sports stories. And, as always, I’d like to end with a quote:

“Don’t measure yourself by what you have accomplished, but by what you should have accomplished with your ability.”

– John Wooden

Nick Woodard can no longer be reached at [email protected], but he can be found @nwoodard25 on Twitter.

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Cat Bites: A farewell to sports