Bob Cheek was a coach who “happened to be a sports writer”

Donnie Scott keeps the old newspaper in a photo album. There he is at bat next to this headline: “Running: 18 home runs averaging 782 points shooting.”

Scott was 12 years old.

The story changed his life. Bob Cheek wrote: “Donnie Scott can command premium rates in the advertising market.” independent evening Back in 1974. “It’s a moving billboard, a 4-column newspaper ad, a 1-minute TV ad. Every time Scott swings the bat, it rings at his dad’s cash register. When they ask his dad how he works, they know Donny is business. …for effectiveness, Donnie Scott can’t be defeated by a Pied Piper. Father runs the batting cage and son runs the pitchers. Put them together and it’ll be like turning on all the extra lights on the pinball machine.”

This 12-year-old will continue playing for two and a half years with Major League Baseball.

Scott, 60, said, “You can split my life in two. There was a pre-Bob and there was an after-Bob.”

Scott said Cheek’s story changed the way people viewed him. It has changed how he looks at himself. The journalist covered the footballer’s career, the year he returned to the minor leagues, and his transition to coaching. Paid coverage of Chick Scott. I paid him. And it took him a while to realize something else about the journalist.

“This guy was a coach and he just happened to be a sports writer,” Scott said.

The chick who spent 21 years in independent evening and 15 years in Tampa TribuneHe died on March 22 of natural causes. He was 82 years old.

Bob Cheek’s 1974 essay about a young and talented baseball player did big things for that player, Donnie Scott. “I’m studying now too. He helped make me a good coach in this way.” [ Courtesy Donnie Scott ]

Stories in the shadows

Chick, or “Chickie” to his friends and fans, has made his way from the paper boy in dew For boy copy to stringer high school football covers. While serving in the army, he married Peggy. Once home, they started a family and Cech joined the newspaper as a sports writer. By 1968, he was a sports editor and columnist.

In his late twenties, Randy Bird began working for Cech and found in his editor an example of the kind of editor Bird hoped to become–a good, fair, and encouraging writer. After a good story, Cech left a note of praise printed in the mailboxes of his correspondents. Beard saved many of them.

From 1983:


If I could give you a gold star for service beyond the call of duty, I would do just that for the great handling and hard work that went into hooliganism and indoor football. I’d like to have a meeting in the newsroom and bring everyone’s attention to your work. It’s not possible of course, so the best I can offer is a pat on the back and a high five…

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beautiful girl

When Bill undoubtedly joined dew As his first job outside of college, he worked for Cech.

“When I got there, it was obvious that in the click order, it was St Pete Times The paper was the biggest and best. We were JV, the little leagues were just as envisioned. Said Blashik, now a sports columnist in a newspaper Los Angeles Times. “He’s the one who taught me a lot about that local journalism is the most important journalism, and writing about the people you live with, your neighbours, it’s so much more important than writing about celebrities and stars.”

CTC wrote about ordinary people, he said undoubtedly. He searched for stories in the shadows.

“No story was too small for him.”

Pop Chick was
Bob Cheek, a former fellow and columnist for the Los Angeles Times, said Bob Cheek was “the first reporter many Tampa Bay athletes spoke to.” “He was there for them when no one was there for them.” [ Courtesy David Chick ]

coach bus

During his career, Chick won nearly 75 writing awards, served on the committee called the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, with the group that brought the Rays to Tampa Bay, and was inducted into the Boca Ciega High School Sports Hall of Fame.

The journalist was also a de facto coach for his four sons, David, Doug, Bruce, and Ryan, and for nearly 20 years of neighborhood kids who played baseball at the Northwest Youth Center in Saint Petersburg. In 1989, his team won the state championship. The following year, he was named Amateur Baseball Coach of the Year by the American Baseball Association.

Their dad was always taking pictures, said David Cheek. He hosts pool parties for the team every year. And the chick had a base to stick to.

“If you don’t come to practice, you don’t play in the game,” said David Cheek.

He said it didn’t matter if he was the best player on the team.

“You have to show up. Just like he did at work. You have to show up every day and do your best.”

Bob Cheek and his wife Peggy were two months away from their 60th wedding anniversary.  After retirement, Cech wrote and directed plays for his church.
Bob Cheek and his wife Peggy were two months away from their 60th wedding anniversary. After retirement, Cech wrote and directed plays for his church. [ Courtesy David Chick ]

Poynter news researcher Karen Bird contributed to this story.

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