I know Keith Pompey.
I worked with Keith Pompey at the Inquirer.
I don’t know John Mitchell at all, but I’ve read his work.
Keith Pompey is that rare journalist who combines caring and passion with writing ability and knowledge. He was that way covering high school sports and he was that way with Temple.
All Temple fans are going to miss Keith Pompey, the old guy, who is replaced by Mitchell, the new guy.
That’s because, judging by his work with the Sixers, I put Mitchell in the category of a guy who does just enough to skate by, like Pompey’s predecessor, Kevin Tatum.
While Pompey typically did two and three stories on every Temple football game, Tatum just did one.
Often being at the games Tatum covered, I saw the game notes.
Tatum used quotes handed to him in the game notes, while Pompey dug for fresh stuff.
Mitchell covered the Sixers pretty much the same way Tatum covered the Owls.
Mitchell’s first story AFTER being switched to the Temple beat was on the Sixers.
That should tell you something right there.
When Mitchell was asked by a fan why no Temple stories, he replied “there’s nothing much happening” yet the same fan was able to come up with eight stories on University of South Florida football in the same time frame written by that school’s beat writer for the Tampa Tribune. The same kind of stories are happening at Temple.
While moving onto the Sixers’ beat is a promotion for Pompey, I get the strong sense that Mitchell views his new Temple assignment as a demotion and won’t do the job with the same vigor as Pompey did.
I hope I’m wrong.