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Take Nine Minutes out of Your Day and Watch This Old Profile of Blackie Sherrod

Come for the journalism advice, stay for in-the-moment analysis of Roger Staubach in a quarterback competition.
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Take Nine Minutes out of Your Day and Watch This Old Profile of Blackie Sherrod

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The Twitter account for SMU’s Jones Film & Video Collection (@SMUJonesFilm) regularly tweets out items from their treasure trove of Dallas history, and yesterday’s was an old nine-minute video profile of Blackie Sherrod, probably the greatest sportswriter in the city’s history (it’s him or Dan Jenkins). The tweet estimates video piece was done in the early 1970s; judging by a scene when he’s dictating a story about the Cowboys’ ongoing quarterback battle between Roger Staubach and Craig Morton, I’d peg it as 1971.

Some 50 years later, the writing advice—read widely, assume the best of your audience, roast yourself harder than anyone you write about—absolutely holds up. So do the scenes of him strolling into Texas Stadium with a battered, sticker-laden briefcase and pecking away on his typewriter in the press box, a lit cigarette smoldering in the ashtray next to him. And I had to laugh at the sarcastic, all-too-prescient dig to end that segment about the quarterback competition: “Some of us smart alecks already think Landry has his mind set on Staubach as his No. 1 quarterback this season—but, then, what do we know?”

You’ll enjoy it.

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