Award for Excellence in Coverage of Youth Sports

2011 Award for Excellence in Coverage of Youth Sports Statue.

Recognizing creative, in-depth and innovative coverage of youth and high school sports by broadcast, print and online journalists.

In 2009, the John Curley Center for Sports Journalism created the Award for Excellence in Coverage of Youth Sports. Work nominated for the award displays creative, in-depth and innovative coverage of youth and high school sports—especially larger issues and trends related to those levels of athletic competition.

The award is intended to recognize work by daily and weekly newspapers, local and national television news broadcasts and national news organizations. Work by multimedia and online news outlets is eligible as well.

Competition for the 2017 award is underway.
Deadline Jan. 31, 2018.


Nominations should include work completed or continuing in the calendar year preceding the Jan. 31 deadline. Both individuals and media organizations are eligible for the award. Anyone may submit an entry on behalf of an individual or organization.

There are no application forms. Each entry must be accompanied by a letter describing the nature and result of the work and by the relevant aired or published material and/or other necessary documentation. To facilitate judging, four copies of each entry must be submitted. That includes clips (or copies of them) for print work, separate CDs or tapes for audio work and DVDs for multimedia and video submissions.

The winner receives $1,000 and is expected to attend a ceremony in April on the University Park campus to discuss the award-winning work with Center for Sports Journalism students and faculty.

Submit Nomination Online

Entries Must be Submitted by Jan. 31, 2018

John Curley Center for Sports Journalism
Penn State College of Communications
302 James Building
University Park, PA 16802-5024



(Finalists: "The 100-Yard Deception, Christopher Baxter/Matthew Stanmyre, NJ Advance Media; "Lost in America," Luke Cyphers/Teri Thompson, Bleacher Report; "The Trusted Grown-Ups Who Steal Millions from Youth Sports," Bill Pennington, The New York Times; "A Stirring Victory for Texas High School. Then the Unthinkable," Jere Longman, The New York Times


"Hard Knocks," Newsday [Story]
(Other finalists: Carlo Kemp Series, Denver Post; "Hardood Journey," The New York Times)

2014 and editor Kyle Newman for its coverage of high school sports and related issues. [Story]
(Other finalists: Missy Isaacson, ESPNw; Travish Sawchik, Pittsburgh Tribune-Review)


A series by the Tampa Bay Times, "Varsity Blues," addresses issues impacting high school sports. [Story] [SERIES]


John Branch of The New York Times for his series "The Lady Jaguars" about the girls basketball team at a school for troubled teens in Tennessee. [Story]


Rob Rossi of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review for his series "Brain Waves," about concussions and high school athletes. [Story]


George Dohrmann, author of "Play Their Hearts Out," a book about grassroots basketball. [Story]


Bob Hohler of the Boston Globe for his series "Failing our Athletes," about the plight of athletic programs and student-athletes and Boston public schools. [Story]


Steve Sampsell

Page last updated: March 6, 2017