I came across this column from Bryan-College Station Eagle’s web site about an incident last Friday at Richardson High. Sports writer Robert Cessna was barred from the press box at Richardson’s baseball field during a playoff game between RHS and A&M Consolidated. Seems the scoreboard operator didn’t want to risk having his in-game comments appear in a newspaper.
Sounds like RHS needs to get a new scoreboard operator. In addition to being an ungracious representative of the RISD, this one apparently can’t restrain himself from making potentially embarrassing comments during games.
Not that his comments would ever get published. Lots of things are said in pressboxes and they never see the light of day. The pressbox is a safe haven for the media, just as the locker room is for players during the times when reporters aren’t allowed in. What’s said in a pressbox, stays in a pressbox.
Of course, this sort of thing would never happen at Lake Highlands. Wildcat Field doesn’t even have a pressbox. The LH scoreboard operator has to contend with the elements just like everyone else. And anyone sitting near the home dugout can hear whatever he says. Somehow, he manages to do his job without incident.
But I am surprised this happened at an RISD event. Athletic director Bob Dubey and assistant AD Leslie Slovak do everything they can to accommodate the media, especially visiting media. Sometimes things are out of their control – such as getting the wireless internet to work at Wildcat-Ram Stadium – but they are always helpful. Cessna even notes in his column how he was treated well by everyone else from Richardson, including baseball coach Kyle Hope.
And for those who don’t know Robert Cessna, he isn’t some young, hot-headed sports writer. He has been at The Eagle since 1975 and has achieved a Hall of Fame career writing about high school athletes. Cessna has seen just about everything in his career, yet has avoided curmudgeon status.
Sports writers sometimes have to put up with a lot more than the public will ever know, especially those in the trenches covering high schools. In 35 years, I’m sure Cessna has had to sit out in the wind and cold to cover baseball games literally hundreds of times. For him to be bothered enough to write about this says a lot.