Sportswriting Program

NBA Math’s Online Sportswriting Program

Teaching aspiring writers how to blend stats, media and context to produce the best NBA-related content.

Instructors

Adam Fromal, NBA Math Editor in Chief

Adam founded NBA Math and has worked for years at Bleacher Report as both a writer and feedback editor for the Advanced Program in Sports Media. With experience ranging from live coverage of the Denver Nuggets to appearances on NBA TV, he’ll be responsible for helping writers improve the overall direction and technicalities of their work.

Dan Favale, NBA Math Deputy Editor

Dan’s NBA analysis has been featured in a number of places—Bleacher Report to his Hardwood Knocks podcast, with plenty in between—and he’s made numerous appearances on nationally syndicated radio shows for networks such as ESPN, NBC, CBS and Sirius XM. He’ll be responsible for helping improve the quality of writing, focusing on everything from creative ledes to powerful turns of phrase deeper down on the page.

Arjun Baradwaj, NBA Math Technical Director

Arjun has been involved in all areas of technology and analytics, from software engineering to web development to building financial dashboards to producing the NBA Math podcast. His experience in data analytics consulting and as the founder of a web-development company have allowed him to work with a wide spectrum of people, tailoring his work to their needs. Arjun will be available for any technology-related asks, including designing graphics and structuring articles.

“The NBA Math Sportswriting Program was extremely helpful and beneficial for me as an aspiring writer/journalist. The program is set up in a very organized manner, which allows participants to focus on improving their writing each week with the help of Adam, Arjun and Dan. The editors give great feedback in a very timely and respectful manner, and are truly invested in the growth of the participants’ writing.

Also, the tools NBA Math provides for participants are valuable for writers. They have great statistical analysis tools and provide a well-known (and respected) platform for writers to share their work. It was great to see and hear all the feedback I received from other writers both in and outside of the program as I wrote about various NBA topics each week.

In conclusion, the program is a must for aspiring NBA writers. You will receive great, constructive feedback on your writing, have a platform to share your work, and connect with other talented and respected writers in the community/industry. I’m extremely pleased with the benefits I received from the program, and I look forward to maintaining the relationships and connections I made by participating in it.” -Eric Spyropoulos, Class 1 Graduate

Mission Statement

It’s not enough to have a solid grasp of NBA analytics. You must be able to do more than write flowery prose capable of capturing readers’ attention. You can’t focus solely on creating compelling media to help supplement your pieces.

Leaning on three instructors with plenty of experience in the field, NBA Math’s Online Sportswriting Program will help you improve all three vital aspects of your sportswriting while giving you a chance to increase your exposure by publishing content on an up-and-coming site with an established base of readers. By the end of the program, your writing will have improved, and your own personal brand will have grown substantially.

Course Outline

NBA Math’s Online Sportswriting Program is a three-month online course for writers of any age and experience level. Once accepted into the program, writers will be asked to publish at least one article per week, working with the instructors to come up with compelling topics and content. They’ll receive hands-on instruction throughout, using concrete tips and experiences with industry mentors to leave the program as better writers—all while building a portfolio of high-quality content.

First Month

The initial month of the program will vary according to the experience and entry level of participants. They’ll immediately begin producing content and working with instructors to improve, but the focus will largely be on developing a full understanding of grammatical skills and tools to increase the readability of their writing. Expect to learn about and maximize the implementation of concepts such as anchor paragraphs, compound modifiers and transition sentences.  

Second Month

Though writers will, as necessary, continue to receive instructions about concepts from the first month, the thrust will move to creativity. During this portion, writers will focus on developing gripping ledes, working on timely cultural references and improving the strength of arguments.

Third Month

No story is complete in 2017 without media elements. Whether using relevant thoughts from other writers, finding (and creating) the right videos or learning how to visualize data, writers will be given the tools necessary to supplement their articles with the most compelling visual and storytelling aides.

“I had been an NBA fan for a long time, but never had any friends or family who shared the same level of interest as I did. The main difference was that I enjoyed studying basketball with an emphasis on data and thought I had some unique perspectives (I later realized there were already a ton of people doing this; I just hadn’t discovered them yet). So that led to me starting my own blog. It was nothing special, but a couple of pieces I wrote made the NBA Twitter rounds and gave me a confidence boost. I did it very infrequently, but then one day I noticed a tweet that caught my attention.

NBA Math was hosting a sportswriting program to help boost young/new writers’ statuses in the NBA media universe. Being in my mid-20s with a job I did not enjoy, I had nothing to lose. So I applied with my work and was shocked when the guys here reached out to me with an offer to be a part of the program. I accepted, and I think it’s one of the best decisions I have made recently. Never one to be confident in my writing skills, I saw a vast improvement in my own work over the 12-week program.

I was able to learn and utilize data-visualization techniques through Tableau, grasped how to make stronger arguments based on empirical evidence and cut down on my bad writing habits. For anyone who is trying to find a way to break into the industry, nothing helps quite like having your work published on a reputable website such as NBA Math. The guidance and feedback you’ll receive from Adam, Dan and Arjun is excessively thorough and extends beyond writing about the NBA, and the time commitment isn’t demanding at all. I can’t recommend this program enough to any future bloggers or sports-writers. It can only help you realize your true potential.” -Tim Stubbs, Class 1 Graduate

A Personal Interest

Unlike other programs, which take a more hands-off approach to working with writers, this program will feature instructors from NBA Math who will always take an active interest in writer development. Not only will you be in constant communication with them to brainstorm writing topics and get your articles into perfect shape, but you’ll have the chance to talk to them rather frequently about broader topics.

Once every two weeks, they’ll schedule a call with you to go over your progress, offer tips as they see fit and answer any of your questions. Communication is key, so you’ll never feel a need to refrain from reaching out.

What Happens Next?

Once you’ve completed the program, your name and portfolio will be featured on the NBA Math website, allowing you to parlay your work into external gigs if you so desire. The best of the best will also be given a chance to continue on with the site, potentially even working with aspiring writers from future classes.

But best of all, your communication with the instructors need not end with the program. They’ll continue to be invested in your development, allowing you to continue reaching out for advice whenever necessary. You’ll forever be a part of the ever-growing NBA Math Slack community. The program may only last for three months, but the benefits can and should stretch on for a much lengthier duration.  

Interested? Apply here!