Thank you, Dennis and J.T. (and Marla)
To paraphrase an old saying, all the credit for our coverage of the Yellow Jackets opening night win Sept. 11 goes to head coach Dennis Johnson and photographer J.T. Marshall, while any blame can be laid at the feet of yours truly. We’re still figuring out how to cover sports during the pandemic, and I had some scrambling to do Tuesday morning. I emailed Johnson to ask if he was free for a postgame recap, and within minutes, he’d called to speak about the victory and look ahead to what’s likely a much tougher matchup Friday night at Franklin County. Aside from the promptness of his response – reporters love that – I was also impressed with the way Johnson spread the credit for his team’s performance. (The story’s on the back page, if you’d like to skip ahead.) In a five minute chat, Johnson found time to praise not only his players, but also fans, school administrators and an assistant coach for suggesting a play action pass that resulted in a 60-yard TD for the Jackets. Good leaders do that sort of stuff, and Johnson’s words Tuesday morning, and those of his players in last week’s season preview, suggest the former UK All-American is exactly that. Thanks also to J.T. Marshall of Marshall Imagery, who also got back to me right away and was kind enough to send the photos you see on our front and back page. Without the Marshall-Johnson team, egg would be liberally and justifiably applied to the face of your humble scribe. Oh yes, and kudos also to Marla Carroll, the Sun design editor, for telling me she’d seen J.T. taking photos at the ballgame and suggesting he might be able to help us out. On that note, please allow me to ask our Dear Readers to contribute as the season rolls along and send their photos and, if they wish, their comments on each ballgame, to email@example.com. There was one bit of unexpected hilarity Tuesday morning while I watched WKYT-TV’s coverage of the ballgame. I was amused – and made a bit woozy – by the difficulty their photographer had in tracking the ball during Bryce Patterson’s long touchdown pass to JD Alexander. It’s not easy shooting sports from the sideline, and it’s understandable that the photog was momentarily fooled, just as the Great Crossing defenders were. (That also happens to be the play Johnson credited an assistant coach for suggesting.) So, on behalf of the aforementioned Dear Readers, and myself, thanks, Dennis, J.T. and Marla. We couldn’t have done it without you. I’ll be back next week with more attempts at mirth and merriment and, possibly, a few more shout-outs. Be safe out there, y’all – and go Jackets!