March 25, 2014

Deadspin | Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

No, Shaka Smart isn’t the new coach of Marquette men’s basketball, but for a little while Monday night, some in the Milwaukee press thought he was. Or would be. Early Tuesday morning, Timothy Burke wrote for Deadspin about the coach and the press conference that wasn’t.

The truth is hard to sort out, because none of the stations identified their sources. But here’s how clueless Milwaukee TV was today: they drove their trucks over to Marquette’s campus for a hoax press conference—this after assuring viewers that “sources close to the Marquette basketball program” leaked them the info that Smart had signed on the dotted line. (Both Marquette and VCU insist nobody’s spoken to Smart about a new job.)

Virginia Commonwealth head coach Shaka Smart in a second-round game in the NCAA college basketball tournament Friday, March 21, in San Diego. (AP Photo/Lenny Ignelzi)

Deadspin pulled together several clips of news stations breaking the “news.” But not everyone was ready to report on Smart as the new coach. Michael Hunt, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s Marquette beat writer, for instance.





On Monday, Hunt wrote about the Smart news for the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

Social media blew up about 5 p.m. Monday with rumors that Marquette had hired a basketball coach.

Television trucks went to a scene where there was no news conference. The airwaves were filled with erroneous reports.

And at the end of the day, Marquette still had no basketball coach.

For now, Shaka Smart is still at Virginia Commonwealth.

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Kristen Hare teaches local journalists the critical skills they need to serve and cover their communities as Poynter's local news faculty member. Before joining faculty…
Kristen Hare

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