Hall of Fame Introduction

Hall of Famer Blake Sebring

It is my honor and pleasure to introduce Pete DiPrimio on his induction into the Indiana Sportswriters and Sportscasters Hall of Fame.

Pete has worked at The News-Sentinel since 2000, predominantly covering Indiana University and Purdue athletics, but he also has always been a great team player who pitches in whenever we have a project or somebody needs a helping hand.

DiPrimio has won more than 40 state and national awards, twice winning first place from the United States Basketball Writers Association, and in 2012 he was named the ISAA sportswriter of the year.

He also has written three points on IU sports, and 21 children’s books. He is working on two novels. He previously was an adjunct lecturer for a master’s level class at the National Sports Journalist Center at IU-PU Indianapolis, and an adjunct lecturer for Indiana University.

Also with IU and Purdue athletics, he covers auto racing, the Big Ten and prep sports. Starting his professional career in 1981, DiPrimio was sports editor for the New Castle Courier-Times, a writer and columnist for the Evansville Press and the Evansville Courier, and the editor for Inside Indiana.

But those things only tell you the obvious. It doesn’t get into the nitty gritty, such as Pete’s complete inability to writer any story less than 15 inches long. “Why write 15 when 25 will do,” he often says. His formula works because he has outlasted almost all copy editors who would dare trim his stories. They have all given up in frustration and moved to over professions.

Pete’s prodigious writing is legendary. He attended Ball State because the essay portions of his entry applications to IU and Purdue were so long, administrators gave up on it. When he and Cindy got married, the service took three hours because Pete wrote his own vows. He taught sports writing classes at IU, but his grade comments were often longer than the student papers. His family’s annual Christmas letter takes so long to read, most recipients don’t have a chance to take down their holiday lights until July 4.

Pete is also a huge Bigfoot hunter, spending most of his vacations in the wild trying to track down the creature. In fact, he’s writing the definitive book on Bigfoot, but it will probably never be published because Pete won’t allow himself to finish it. At this time, it’s up to 1,500 pages.

In all seriousness, and it pains me to say this, Pete is the hardest-working sportwriter I have ever known. If he doesn’t have two stories published in The News-Sentinel each day, I’m guessing he starts to itch. His work load is amazingly consistent and well done.

When Pete was covering IU in the Sweet 16 this year in Philadelphia, he made sure to have a couple of IU spring football stories done ahead of time. No matter how much you try to convince him the IU football audience is minimal, Pete considers it his beat and responsibility. He deserves to be in the Hall of Fame simply because no one other than Bob Hammel has been tortured so much by watching IU football games.

Pete has covered IU for so long, he has out-lasted Bob Knight, Mike Davis and Kelvin Sampson, and he’s hip deep into Tom Crean. He wrote one of the best and earlier obits on Archie Dees, for goodness sakes! Oh, yeah, I forgot about Branch McCracken, too.

Pete is the only sportswriter I know who would not flinch if you told him, “You have to have a four-page wraparound section done in three days.” He’s ask why he couldn’t have six pages instead – and why waste time on pictures?

When The News-Sentinel had an opening for our IU and Purdue beats in 2000, longtime sportswriter Reggie Hayes – who should be considered heavily for Hall of Fame induction – and I approached editor Rich Griffis about hiring Pete. We had gone through three or four writers in that position over a very short time. Rich was considering bringing the spot back to Fort Wayne. Reggie and I made the case he could do that and continue to have constant turnover, or he could give the job to Pete and forget about it for the next 15 years. That was 16 years ago. Reggie and I still consider than one of our biggest contributions to The News-Sentinel.

I could go on longer, but I know we’ll need the extra time because Pete wrote his own acceptance speech.

Welcome to the Hall of Fame, my friend. We are truly blessed and thankful to have you part of it.

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