New website dedicated to University of Wyoming athletics launches
CHEYENNE, Wyo., — 7220sports.com, a new website dedicated to covering University of Wyoming athletics, went live Saturday, June 1.
The site, which is free to readers, was founded by Cheyenne native, Cody Tucker.
Tucker, who worked as the sports editor at the Douglas Budget before accepting a position covering Michigan State University athletics at the Lansing State Journal, said 7220sports.com will be solely funded by advertising.
Tucker was also a Pittsburgh Penguins beat writer at DKPittsburghSports.com, a pioneering sports media website.
“I feel like this model can really work,” Tucker said, adding that paywalls and subscriptions are a turnoff for most sports fans. “We have more than 20 years of media experience on our staff, and I am proud to say that we are all from Wyoming.”
Tucker is joined by Kasey Orr, who will oversee all multi-media, video and design. Darrel Johnson was named staff photographer, and Chad Blakely is the 7220sports.com cartoonist, churning out a weekly feature depicting great moments in UW sports history. Local web designer, Brady Brinton, is tasked with creating the aesthetics and smooth navigation of the site.
“We are really excited to give Wyoming fans a new outlet to get their Pokes coverage,” Tucker said. “With only one four-year university in the state, we feel like this is a golden opportunity. Think about it – we have an entire state pulling for one team. That’s pretty special.
“There may not be many of us in this state, but we are proud and fiercely loyal. We look forward to tapping into that and having a blast with it.”
Tucker said the site will cover all UW football games, home and away. It will also be at all home men’s basketball games and most on the road. He added that he will also cover all other sports as often as possible.
7220sports.com will feature a weekly podcast, video interviews, GIFs, graphics and a strong presence on social media. Tucker said the company’s Facebook page had 1,000 “likes” in less than 24 hours with no advertising.
Unique storytelling will be a major player on the site, according to Tucker, along with plenty of team, player coverage, columns and news stories.
“I feel like that art has been lost a little bit,” said Tucker, who was a feature writer at the LSJ. “A lot of times the story isn’t even on the field but off. I think a strength of mine is the fact that I didn’t miss a home Wyoming football game in 25-plus years. The institutional knowledge of the program should help aide in writing some great stories.”
Another aspect of the site that Tucker said he is looking forward to is interacting with fans. There will be no fees, but readers will have to enter their email to comment on stories. He said one thing he learned in Pittsburgh is how important it is to chat, listen and be attentive with fans.
“It’s really a community,” he said. “When the Pokes are in Tulsa we want to take the reader along for the ride. We want to make it like a virtual sports bar.