A Letter from the Editor


To the readers of Keeping It Heel…

First of all, If you don’t know who I am, let me introduce myself briefly. I’m John Bauman, the editor of Keeping It Heel. I started here in June of 2013. My first article was covering the Diamond Heels in the College World Series, and I’m approaching two years on the job coming up soon.

I started as editor in around October of 2013 and I’ve written exactly 585 articles for this website, which is just as shocking for me to write as it probably is for you to read. That’s a whole lot of articles. Some have been good, some have been bad, but I’ve stuck with it and like to think I’ve gotten better as time has gone along.

I wanted to take a moment here at the end of the season and in light of yesterday’s article to talk to the readers for a second. We get a lot of our traffic from referrals, from Bleacher Report and Tar Heel Times and other sources, but I know we have a small but devoted following of readers, like frequent commenter “bumpandrun,”and I want to specifically talk to you right now.

First of all, I really want to thank you for reading, commenting, liking, following and supporting Keeping It Heel. It sounds cliche, but I know you have a lot of really good options to go to for coverage of the Tar Heels, and I’m really thankful that a few of you choose to read Keeping It Heel. I really do mean it — thank you.

I wanted to address a few things in this letter. First of all, I wanted to get a definition of what Keeping It Heel is for you, the readers. As much as I might like us to be, Keeping It Heel is not a credentialed media source. We don’t get to talk to Coach Fedora on teleconferences, visit with the players or go into boxes. At this point in time, that’s just not who we are. If you are looking for the press box perspective, Andrew Carter does a darn good job for the News and Observer covering the Heels. Tar Heel Blog of SB Nation also does a darn good job covering the Heels. Those are two great options, without even naming the recruiting websites like Tar Heel Illustrated and Inside Carolina and Carolina Blue.

I like to think that we fill a different niche — the perspective of the fan, sharing both what fans want to read about and what the fans are thinking about the team. Every staffer of Keeping It Heel, at the end of the day, is really just a fan of the Tar Heels who wants to share their perspective with others. This means a few things. First, our articles aren’t going to be perfect. We’ve had some mistakes in the past, and we made a few mistakes in yesterday’s article, and we will continue to make mistakes in the future. But all that I can promise is to do my best to fix mistakes as soon as we find them and learn from them going forward.

Second, since we are the fan perspective, we also want to hear from you guys. Let us know in the comments section below, on Facebook or on Twitter what you think about the topics that we write about. Please don’t insult, but share your opinions and start discussion about these topics.

Third, and this is important, we aren’t always going to be right. Before the N.C. State football game, I was sure UNC was going to beat the Wolfpack. I wrote an article about why I thought the Heels would certainly beat State, and I ended up being way off. 100% wrong. But we want to give you, the readers, strong opinions and content that is fun to read and stirs up debate.

I want to talk about the future as well briefly. First of all, I don’t intend on going anywhere. As long as my bosses will allow, I’d like to stay on as editor. Also, we aren’t a subscription site and don’t intend to be. Yes, that means a few ads, but I really like how FanSided has stayed away from the subscription model. Some of those subscriptions are valuable, but I currently don’t have any, and like how our content is free.

My vision for Keeping It Heel is to push us from being just fans to being smarter fans — more film study posts, more analytically minded articles, more of all that good stuff, because I enjoy writing and reading that. But, and this is also important for the readers to understand, I have to find a balance of writing great, forward thinking content while also making it appealing to readers. Last year, I wrote a long film study profile of Marquise Williams, and maybe 100 people read it in total. However a few weeks ago I wrote a short post about the recruitment of Kenny Williams, the basketball recruit, and that got tons of pageviews. I want to write informative, in-depth content, but I’ve also got to find a way to get it read. That is one of our great challenges going forward.

My last point is about yesterday’s article. We got a few grumpy comments and tweets and Facebook posts about errors in the article. All the errors have been fixed now, and that falls on me. KIH can’t promise to be perfect, like I said earlier, but I will try to fix them and learn from them. Some also took offense to the article, arguing that no, UNC hadn’t avoided one and dones but rather just swung and missed while recruiting many of those types of guys.

I have more problems with those comments, because you are attacking another fan’s perspective. If you disagree, tell us why in the comments. Just like you won’t agree with every statement your buddy makes at a bar, you won’t agree with every article. But start a respectful debate and feel free to share your thoughts whenever you do disagree.

I’m going to stand by the article because it represents the fan’s perspective, and that is what we are all about here. That’s all part of being a member of the FanSided network, which we proudly belong to. We hope you as fans will continue to read and interact with Keeping It Heel in the future.


Thanks again for reading, and if you have any comments, concerns, suggestions or even a compliment about Keeping It Heel, shoot me an email at johncbauman@gmail.com. I will do my best to respond to each one.


John Bauman