I read the July 27 introduction from new sports editor Jeff Welsch with interest. I lived in Bozeman for six years, departing in 2006, and am familiar with the Bozeman Chronicle.
I welcome him to the best newspaper in Montana. A great thing about the Billings Gazette is its sports pages. Its coverage of all sports and the priority given to all high school athletics, including "minor sports," is outstanding.
I am an avid fan of high school track/field and cross country. The coverage provided by The Gazette is second to none. I've often called Bozeman friends informing them that news and statistics from their high school teams are in The Gazette because, more often than not, they are not in their Chronicle. I know many of them read The Gazette for that reason. From experience I've found that unless it involves MSU football/basketball or BHS football/basketball, coverage of minor sports in Bozeman is/has been anemic. There were a few instances this past year where coverage was very good but those were exceptions.
We have four high schools in Billings, one in Laurel and many others in the surrounding area that read The Gazette with interest because of the coverage they give to high school athletics.
Will The Gazette continue their style of sports reporting or will we be experiencing new changes this coming high school year in the part they play in our extended area?
I hope not. I've experienced both versions and I'd hate to see something that "ain't broke" fixed for any reason.