Friday, September 29, 2006

Marquette Tribute Following the Lead of The Warrior?

Both The Marquette Tribune and The Warrior came out yesterday.

The striking thing: the Tribune seems to be following the lead of The Warrior in putting a feature story on the front page, above the fold.

And in full color.

The Warrior has done this for several issues now.

The Warrior has a long feature, written by Diana Sroka, about a Marquette sophomore who is an unwed mother, struggling with the demands of school, working long hours and caring for her 2-year-old daughter.

The Tribune likewise ran a story, written by Phil Caruso, about Marquette ROTC students in their Field Training Exercise at Fort McCoy. It, like the Warrior feature, has large color photos splashed all over.

We haven’t asked the Tribune staff whether they are following the lead of the Warrior. We doubt that they have any such explicit policy, and the feature story they ran yesterday may be partly the result of a week that has been slow for real news. But we wouldn’t be a bit surprised if the Tribune staff has noticed the success of the Warrior formula.

The Warrior, by the way, seems to get better and better. The long-term success of any “alternative” student paper is always in doubt. But some of them do get enough visibility, credibility and advertiser base to become viable long-term fixtures of campus life.

Founded explicitly as a conservative alternative to the liberal Tribune, The Warrior has leaned to the right (featurning columnists like Daniel Suhr and Robert Fafinski), but also allowed considerable diversity of opinion (such as an anti-concealed carry essay by Mike Rudzinski and a Letter to the Editor defending heretical theologian Dan Maguire’s right to teach at Marquette, both in the current issue).

Of course, the paper has a fair amount of non-ideological news of interest to students, cultural coverage.

The question is: when the current cadre of staffers leaves Marquette, will the paper be an attractive enough project to attract new blood? That’s becoming more likely with each issue.


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