Tom Cushman

Writing is an art. The ability to share an experience using storytelling techniques takes time, talent and a commitment to the craft. Good writers can make you feel like you were on the scene. Columnists can shine a light on an issue -- leading to a new perspective, perhaps, or reaffirming a core belief.

Many of us enjoy sports. Whether it's following local teams or rooting for professional ones, sports can be exhilarating -- especially when your team wins the big game. For many of us fans, watching the games isn't enough. We find ourselves looking for pre- or postgame coverage and reaction from the athletes and coaches. It's here where sports writers can play key a role.

Last week a longtime sports writer with local ties was inducted into the United States Basketball Writers' Association hall of fame. Tom Cushman, a Cape Girardeau Central High School and Southeast Missouri State University graduate, was honored before the NCAA national championship game in New Orleans.

Cushman, whose impressive career includes writing for the Capaha Arrow and the Southeast Missourian, covered a number of major sporting events over the years, including: 25 Super Bowls, 23 World Series, 22 Masters and 11 Olympic Games. And while attending just one of these events would be a thrill for most of us, Cushman said it was the personal side of sports that intrigued him. "I was always more interested in the people than the games. That was the fascination," Cushman said.

Congratulations to Cushman on a great career and this special honor.