Boise State beat reporter Chadd Cripe has the job that you and I and thousands of access-starved, borderline-obsessive Bronco fans would love to have ... except for the part where you get fired for seven days in the middle of the season.
Cripe announced on Sunday that he would be on furlough for the next seven days, meaning no Bronco coverage, no Tweeting, no writing, and no voting in the AP poll. Now, I don't presume to know all the details surrounding this furlough, but I doubt I'm far from the truth when I say, Good grief, the Idaho Statesman is cheap. Temporarily laying off one of your most valuable employees while he is covering the most popular news item in the paper says as much about the state of the Idaho Statesman (destitute, desperate, and coupon-driven) as it does the state of journalism (devalued and Bleacher Report-y). If covering a Top Five team with national championship hopes doesn't keep you full-time employed during the season, then we should maybe start steering our kids toward different professions. I hear bowl executives do pretty well for themselves.
I hesitate to dwell on the "how" and "why" of this situation since I don't have the answers to questions like what initiated the furlough, why now, why not someone from the Life section, etc.
But there is something I do know: Chadd Cripe is very good at what he does. And it is a shame that a great reporter like him has to be quiet for a week.
On a related note, is it too late to request a refund on my journalism degree? I still have the receipt.