Damn you, Spath!
Michigan Hockey Net’s Geoff Chiles has decided to forgo the remainder of his amateur eligibility and sign a professional contract with TheWolverine.com. Chiles tentatively plans on finishing out the season with MHNet while starting his transition to The Wolverine next month.
“I wanted to thank you for this opportunity. I’m so very grateful my friend,” Chiles said in an e-mail to Michigan Hockey Net owner Jason Paul. “Not just for the timeline that led up to me getting this internship, but to be able to work with, gain experience, and cover my Alma Mater, the team I grew up loving as a kid.”
Chiles was not heavily recruited coming out of college but was offered a full media pass by Michigan Hockey Net last spring to cover Michigan hockey games at the start of the 2012-13 season. In his first season covering the team, the Wolverines have compiled a 5-6-0 record in games he has attended.
“Now I know how Red feels when a player leaves early,” Paul said. “Geoff said he talked it over with his ‘family advisor’ and felt it was in his best interests to pursue this opportunity. Unfortunately, that’s part of the business these days. You have these pro blogs getting in these kids ears about being able to cover more games and paying them a small stipend, if not more…allegedly. It’s hard to compete against blogs that don’t have to play by the same rules. The best I can offer Geoff is free hot dogs (without ketchup and mustard as that would be a violation of NCAA rules) and soda in the press box before a game.
“I took a chance on Geoff and offered him a full media pass when no other blog would,” Paul continued. “The Wolverine claims to have the kid’s best interests in hand and I wish him all the best. I just hope he’s not making a mistake in leaving early and taking on all this added responsibility before he’s ready. The last thing I want to see is Geoff not live up to his potential and spend the rest of his career toiling around minor league blogs like Chat Sports.”
With the departure, the attention now turns to the 2013-14 season. While it’s already late in the blogger recruiting cycle with many of the top prospects having signed during November’s early signing period, Paul is hoping he can find another diamond in the rough to fill the void for next season.
In all seriousness, I want to congratulate our very own Geoff Chiles, who just accepted a paid internship with TheWolverine.com and will start with them next month. Geoff tentatively plans on covering the remaining home games for MHNet during the first month of transition before turning his full attention to his new home.
I know Geoff has long aspired to join the media ranks, and after e-mail chatting with him last year about it, I threw out the idea of him helping me out as an arena correspondent. Living in Yooperland, it would help me out and give him an opportunity he was looking for—a win-win situation. I always told Geoff if this leads to something bigger and better, I would be happy for him, and I am.
So thank you, Geoff, for the coverage you provided this season and best of luck to you at TheWolverine.com!