Redskins Hog Heaven rated FIVE STARS in an annual review of blogs that follow the Washington Redskins NFL team. The review was conducted by DC Pro Sports Report and published July 26, 2010.
This is the second review of Redskins sites by DCPSR and the only such I'm aware of. It's also quite the clever idea from guys who are full of clever ideas. By reviewing every Redskins site from Matt Terl's official Redskins Blog to a few that started just months ago, DCPSR entices everyone to link back to their site. That's a hat tip to them. Wish I thought of it first.
Though a cute blogging technique, the reviews are thorough. So for an assessment of the strengths of each blog, go take a look. We'll be here when you get back.
With training camp starting, now is a good time to describe who we are and what was are trying to be.
Hog Heaven was born from the mind of Evan Brunell, who like all sports blogging pioneers, it seems, was a college student. Brunell is a diehard Boston Red Sox fan who, with a few of his friends, began posting stories about the team early this decade. Together, they concocted the idea of a network of blogs covering team sports in other cities. Thus, the Most Valuable Network, later MVN, was born. If MVN wasn't the first sports blog network, they were one of the earliest practitioners.
MVN launched Hog Heaven to cover the 2003 Washington Redskins season. By then, most of the positive vibes about the Skins came from memories of The Hogs, still the greatest offensive line in NFL History.
I contributed stories for the 2005 season, splitting time on my personal blog, Running Redskins. By 2007 most of my content went to Hog Heaven. Greg Trippiedi, my writing partner, signed on about that time.
MVN was once the largest sports blog network. Alas, they did not attract financial backing as Sports Blog Nation has. SB Nation is the clear leader of blog networks. SBN's site covering the Redskins, which goes by the unfortunately similar name of Hogs Haven, was established circa 2005.
With better funding, SBN could afford better tech support, snag more marketing deals, and scarf press credentials for Hogs Haven writers Kevin Ewoldt and Ken Meringolo. That had three big impacts on Hog Heaven.
The first and biggest was the demise of MVN. The Brunell family shuttered the network in 2009 and scattered its orphans to other networks. We landed with high hopes at Bloguin.com. (MVN.com has since relaunched under new ownership.)
The second was the clear realization that Greg and I are bloggers, not journalists. I tell my momma all the time that you don't get a job at The Post because you are a good writer. You get it because you develop sources. Bloggers do not have sources and do not originate stories. It's nigh impossible to do without the backing of a network that can deliver traffic and open doors. SBN does that for Kevin and Ken. Comcast SportsNet does it for Rich Tandler, the godfather of Redskins bloggers.
Kevin's, Ken's and Rich's good fortune is something we applaud.
We'll never match their access to the Redskins. So we have to do a better job of figuring out what it all means. Our motto and guiding light at Hog Heaven is "thoughtful analysis about The Washington Redskins." We don't say that out loud anymore because it's, well, boring. But our assessments are not.
If you follow the Snyder Redskins, you already know that healthy skepticism is a defense mechanism. As fans, we need remainders that nothing about Washington's glory years makes us a potential 12-4 team today.
Finally, we refined our identity to Redskins Hog Heaven to distinguish ourselves from Hogs Haven and from the hog heaven sites that follow the Harley-Davidson Motor Company and Arkansas Razorbacks, not to mention every Hog Heaven Bar-B-Que joint in the country.
There you have it. Redskins Hog Heaven got here first. We analyze news sourced by others as a defense against the Snyder hype machine. DC Pro Sports Report says we're kinda good at it. Independent thinking never hurt anyone.
Hail To The Redskins!
Follow us on Twitter @SkinsHogHeaven.