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Sports Illustrated Writer To Give Talk March 1
February 14, 2000

Leigh Montville, considered one of Sports Illustrated's most versatile writers, will discuss sportswriting and his own work during a talk at South Campus, Room A113, at 1 p.m. on March 1.

Walter S. McGowan Lectureship

Montville, a 1965 UConn graduate, is also a commentator for CNN/Sports Illustrated cable network and co-authored a book last year with UConn basketball coach Jim Calhoun titled, Dare to Dream: Connecticut's Basketball's Remarkable March to the National Championship.

Montville's visit to Storrs is supported by an endowed lectureship established in the name of the late Walter S. McGowan Jr., a news editor in the University's public relations office.

Sports Illustrated editor John Papanek has praised Montville's unique reporting and writing style.

"Storytelling, indeed, is Montville's gift," Papanek wrote. "He peels away the layers of obfuscation, gets straight to the heart of an idea and brings it directly to the readers." Montville has a special knack for writing columns, Papanek said, "those journalistic hybrids of fact and opinion."

Before joining Sports Illustrated as a senior writer in 1989, Montville spent more than 20 years as a sports columnist for The Boston Globe. Before that, the New Haven native spent three years covering sports at The New Haven Journal-Courier.

"My philosophy has always been that sports should be fun, a thing of joy," says Montville, "I don't get up a whole lot of outrage; I'd rather laugh."

Montville feels his most significant piece of work for Sports Illustrated was a 1991 story describing Super Bowl Sunday in the midst of the Persian Gulf War.

In 1997, he won a CableACE award for cable excellence for best sports commentator/analyst.

Montville's talk is part of a lecture series in Journalism 250, Professional Seminar, taught by Marcel Dufresne, an associate professor of journalism. Priority seating is for enrolled students but remaining seats are open to visitors.

This semester's speakers include Lynne DeLucia and John Springer, a Pulitzer Prize-winning team from The Hartford Courant, on March 15 and a photo ethics talk by John Long, a photographer with The Hartford Courant, and past president of the National Press Photographers Association, on April 19.