How does one sports edit when there are no sports?
While I try to answer that question, along with countless others in the same position as me throughout the country, in these next few weeks as we deal with the fallout of the new coronavirus (COVID-19), I should go ahead and introduce myself.
Hello. I’m Daniel Mayes, and I’m the new sports editor here at the Daily Citizen-News. I’ve been on the job since March 3, and I’m beyond excited to be in this position.
First, some background.
I grew up in an impossibly tiny town called Grove Oak in DeKalb County in northeastern Alabama, just about two hours from Dalton. I grew up with a love for sports that far outweighed my ability to play them, so following, talking and writing about sports eventually became a natural fit as I got into high school and saw my playing time halt as quickly as my growing taller did.
I attended Jacksonville State University, so no, you won’t have to worry about an Alabama fan running your sports section. It was at JSU that I began covering games for the school newspaper, and I immediately fell in love with the profession. (Traveling to Indianapolis for JSU’s NCAA men's basketball tournament game in 2017 — a 78-63 loss to No. 2-seeded Louisville — and cover it from press row didn’t hurt either.)
With that love of journalism now in place along with that obsession in sports, my path seemed clear. A couple of newspaper jobs later, and here I am.
I’m excited to cover games, talk to coaches and tell the stories of the athletes in our coverage area. Oh, and I’m excited to do that in the Carpet Capital of the World.
I visited Dalton a few times before getting the job, and it soon began to feel like home. I live here with my wife, Hollie, and our cat, who is named after a Star Wars video game character. (If you are wondering, he's Cat Kestis, named after Cal Kestis in "Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order.")
Yeah, that’s another thing about me. When I’m not nerding out over sports, I can usually be found nerding about things like Star Wars, Lord of the Rings or Harry Potter.
But, back to the important stuff.
Players, coaches, parents or anyone reading this, I’m here to tell the stories worth telling, and I always want to be as open as possible. Feel free to contact me any time with story suggestions, scores, questions, critiques or rants. You’re trusting me to spotlight you, or your players or your child. If there’s something I’ve missed, let me know. If there’s something coming up you think I might not know about, let me know. Want to report a score from a game but feel like it is too late? Send it. I’ll at least get it in the next issue. I’m only one person, but I’m going to do the absolute best job that I can as one person.
Danielmayes@dailycitizen.news. That’s the best way to reach me. Or on my Twitter account, @ByDanielMayes, where I’ll do my best to tweet live updates from games, scores, news and whatever else pops up when I’m not writing.
I’ve already met a few coaches, athletic directors and players in my two weeks, and I look forward to meeting and working with anyone else I have yet to meet.
Let’s do this.
And let’s get back to playing games soon.
Daniel Mayes is the Daily Citizen-News sports editor. Reach him at email@example.com.