Sports magazines bring home the excitement of the game. With expert analysis, fans get a behind the scenes look at the games, the players, the coaches, the owners, and all the attendant drama, on field and off. And for the die-hard sports fan, sports magazines help fill that void during “off season” by providing coverage about the preferred sport, year round.
Raising the Standard
The best known sports magazine is Sports Illustrated. At the time of its first publication, sports journalism was seen as a “less than” form of writing. Sports writing was simply not taken seriously. But Henry Luce, the creative visionary genius of Time magazine, insisted the bar could be raised. And raised, it was.
Sports Illustrated literally created the new standard of sports writing. Thanks to SI, American viewership of television sports increased in waves. Articles weren’t just devoted to scores and hot players, but also on ethical dilemmas, addictions, race issues, and more. In short, sports journalism, thanks to SI, became synonymous, in the right hands, with hard journalism. Further, SI devoted pages to sports fiction, humor, and hard-hitting, investigative journalism as well.
Since then, the field (as it were) has filled. New sports magazines, like ESPN’s monthly publication, are very popular. Equally successful are the family of SI spin-offs, including their youth magazine, Sports Illustrated for Kids. There are also dozens upon dozens of specialized publications focusing on individual sports like football, basketball, hockey, racing, cycling, and more.