Chicago sportswriter Jerome Holtzman wrote a book called”No Cheering In The press Box.” Of course the book was not about that…it was about sportswriters and their many anecdotes, but the title was right on because “No Cheering In The Press Box” is an etiquette that should be followed by everyone in the media. There is a sign saying “No Cheering In The Press Box” in the press box at the University of Vermont Gutterson Fieldhouse and I’m sure there are signs in hundreds of other venues across the country.
That’s why I’m amazed at the number of people who defended Charles Barkley cheering at Villanova’s win over North Carolina on Monday night. No he didn’t do anything illegal, there are a lot of people who don’t care too. I get that, but he broke the etiquette. It’s as simple as that. As some pointed out he wasn’t on the air and wasn’t in the press box and he really isn’t a member of the media. First of all it doesn’t matter if was one the air, secondly he was in the press box figuratively speaking and like or not he is a member of the media.
What if Jim Nantz started to openly cheer and applaud after Villanova’s victory or at the Masters this week? I don’t think too many people would be happy with that especially North Carolina fans. That is no different than what Charles Barkley did the other night. It is media etiquette and it’s called “No Cheering in The Press Box.”