Bob Ryan writes his farewell as a regular columnist to the Boston Globe. However, he makes it clear he hasn’t written his last column.
When I hit the “send” button on my gold medal basketball game column, I will cease to be a full-time employee of the only newspaper I have ever worked for after graduating from college. But let’s not call it “retirement.” I choose to call it “Transition to Phase Two.”
Joe Sullivan, who among his other distinctions is the only sports editor I have worked for who loves and knows more about college basketball than I do, has graciously asked me to remain as a Sunday contributor for 30-40 times a year.
Ryan pays tribute to his Globe colleagues:
And Bud Collins . . . what can I say, other than no man could have been more helpful and encouraging to a young colleague than Bud Collins. And let me tell you something else. No one has ever written better columns for this paper than Bud Collins, and I’m talking baseball, basketball, boxing, football, among others, not just tennis.
That’s saying a lot, because what matters most to me as I wind down my association with this great newspaper is that I firmly believe I have been a member of a true All-Star team in sports journalism for the entire 44 years. We tend to judge sports figures by the number of championship rings they have been fortunate enough to accumulate. I want to be judged by the people I’ve worked with. Lists are dangerous, because someone obvious invariably is left off. So I won’t risk that. Just appreciate that I have been in a killer lineup for 44 years.
But one person does deserve special note. There are some great women in our business, but I don’t know of anyone who has matched Jackie MacMullan’s feat of going toe-to-toe with the boys in terms of attaining top-level credibility while not sacrificing a shred of femininity. She is the ultimate role model for any young woman.
And he concludes:
My goal is to gain personal life flexibility and to eliminate obligation. I still have the Globe part-time gig and I still have a bit more TV shelf life, how much I really don’t know. I want to do what I want to do and not do what I don’t want to do. And my wife of 43 years, the former Elaine Murray, is the perfect companion with whom to do or not do whatever it is we’re going to do or not do.
See me in a year or so. I’ll let you know how it’s working out.
Job well done, Bob. Here’s wishing flexibility works out well.
The Globe also has a terrific package of Ryan’s top columns through the years.