Essential Yearbook Sections: Part II - The Sporting Life

Highlight school sports in your yearbook.

Next up in our week-long coverage of the essential yearbooks sections that no school should skip: the sports section! Whether your school boasts no more than a soccer team or covers even the most unusual or innovative sports, this section is always a favorite with students and other yearbook readers.

School sports are an essential for encouraging school spirit!
Image source: Flickr CC Oscar Rethwill.

THE BASICS

  • Give an introduction: If your school is particularly sports-centric, take a half page 0r so to introduce your sport teams, talk about why they’re important, and what they mean to your school. Maybe the basketball player that generally sits the bench made a game-winning three pointer with half a second left on the clock, or maybe your soccer team had a significant season, or the whole town spent every chilly Friday night cheering on the unbeatable football team. Talk about how for some students it was their first experience playing a sport and being part of a team. In the same token, talk about how special this particular season or year was for senior athletes.
  • Represent each sport: It doesn’t matter if the track team didn’t perform well this spring, or that the cheerleaders didn’t compete in finals. Each sport is important in its own right, and each should have equal recognition. Therefore, individual sports should have their own page and contain important information pertaining to each.

VITAL INFORMATION

  • Schedules and stats: Make a graphic that contains the season’s schedule and scores of each game, match, or meet. If there was a particularly spectacular or important game, give that one some significant coverage or highlight it in some way. Years from now, this will help spark the memories of those games for people looking back at the yearbook.
  • Group photos: It’s essential to take photos of each team as a whole. If you rely solely on candid photos, it will not fully represent the team and everyone who contributed to the season, and you don’t want to make anyone feel unimportant and unappreciated. Make sure you set up times to take full team shots, and remember to get everyone in their uniform.
  • Don’t forget the coaches: Even looking back at some of my old yearbooks, I see that there was one substantial thing missing from each sport – who the coach was. It’s true that students make up the teams and carry out the season, but they are only able to do this because of the leadership and guidance of awesome coaches. Give some information on the coach, their background, why this sport is important to them, and their contribution to the team. And don’t forget a picture!

SPECIAL SIGNIFICANCE

  • Awards: Maybe your softball team won the title of state champions, your tennis coach was recognized for his great leadership, or a team member bowled a perfect 300. Make sure to highlight this special recognition and award in that sport’s pages. Whether big or small, each sport will have something that is particularly significant to them. Take time to research and find out these special things about each team and include them in the yearbook.
  • Captains: Exercise your storytelling skills by sharing how the captains were chosen. Interview other members of the team, talking to the coach, and speaking with the captains themselves. Choosing captains is not always a popularity contest, and it shouldn’t be. Give the heartfelt story of why a particular person was chosen for the coveted position.
  • Interviews and quotes: Interview team members and coaches on their thoughts regarding the overall season. You’ll get some funny, inspirational, and interesting quotes that provide a personal angle on each sport.
  • Action shots: It’s great to have group photos and stats, but nothing shows the season quite like some action shots. Capture the baseball pitcher right as they are throwing a curveball, a golf player looking off in the distance at their shot, the team running out to carry the point guard after an amazing basket. You can even include players in their element at practices, loading up the bus for a trip, or giving handshakes at the end of a game.
  • New uniforms: If your school had new uniforms this past year, take just a moment to show off the new threads. This is also a great place to give some history on the school colors, and maybe a backstory of how the mascot came about. I know my football team had a lot of “tricks” that lead to our mascot becoming the Magicians. These stories make for fun folklore for every community.

Did your school’s yearbook have a particularly fun feature in the sports section? Let us know in the comments! And don’t forget to tune in tomorrow for our third installment on essential yearbook sections – the student life section!

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