Happy anniversary to us at JerryRatcliffe.com: We’re 2 years old today!

By Jerry Ratcliffe

Exactly two years ago tonight, we launched JerryRatcliffe.com with cautious optimism. Our goal was to bring you the best coverage possible of Virginia athletics, adding nearly four decades of experience, institutional knowledge, and stories that readers couldn’t find anywhere else.

We hope that you feel that we have brought that to our audience as we celebrate our second birthday on the promise that the best is yet to come.

We also want to thank you for your support, your comments and your readership as we attempt to bring something new to the table every day, although during the pandemic shutdown it has been extremely challenging with no games to cover and limited access to coaches and athletes.

While the sports world has essentially shut down, our readership has actually continued to zoom upward into another stratosphere and we thank you so much for that. Please continue to spread the word about our free website to other Wahoo friends. Even though we’ve been around for two years now, we continue to find Virginia fans that don’t know about us despite our heavy presence on Twitter and Facebook.

Originally we depended on subscriptions to earn our keep, but after Year One we decided to drop the subscriptions and make our website free to everyone. The decision was to depend solely on advertising, a formula that has worked well until the pandemic shutdown.

Our confidence is that the world will slowly return to normal and sports and business will go onward and upward.

We truly want to thank our sponsors. Without you, we couldn’t survive and our readers would be denied some outstanding coverage of their beloved Wahoos.

If you read this site, we strongly encourage you to support our sponsors, particularly during this time when everyone is feeling the pain of the shutdown. The more you support our sponsors, the more our sponsors can support us.

During the past year, we have expanded the coverage on our website. While we have always covered UVA athletics heavily, and give you great insight into the ACC as well, we have added golf and running to the mix. We hope to continue the expansion with physical fitness sometime over the summer.

If you’re a runner, either competitively or just for the exercise, you should definitely check out Mark Lorenzoni’s “Sub-4” podcast on our site. Mark, a four-decade resident of Charlottesville, runs one of our sponsors: Ragged Mountain Running Shop. He is a running guru and spoons out local running news and tips in a four-minute package regularly. It’s stuff you can’t get anywhere else.

Hootie is one of the few remaining golf writers in the state of Virginia. It’s one of his passions. He has covered a dozen U.S. Open golf championships and has played many of the nation’s great courses. He has covered the Masters, numerous Presidents Cups, along with state and local tournaments, and received the prestigious Earle Hellen Award from the Middle Atlantic PGA for his outstanding golf coverage and contribution to the sport.

Boar’s Head Resort and the “new” Birdwood Golf Course put their trust in Hootie to report all the news about David Love III’s work, much of which has appeared on this site (with more to come).

About six months into JerryRatcliffe.com, we were approached by Charlottesville Radio Group about starting a local sports show, and since mid-December of 2018, we have brought the Charlottesville audience tons of interviews with some of the greatest names in Wahoos athletic history, past, present and future. In addition, we have gone outside the box with interviews from great authors such as John Grisham, John Feinstein and Jonathan Coleman, plus other interesting guests such as Curtis Strange on golf, Anthony Esposito on sports gambling, Mike Cubbage on Major League Baseball and the Washington Nationals, also Ray Zahab, an extreme distance runner who has run across the Sahara and the South Pole.

There’s some exciting news upcoming about our radio show in early July. Stay tuned.

We have podcasted every radio interview on this website so that if you missed one or more, they are easily accessible in our archives. Thanks to my son, Scott, who does a great deal on the site, we have also started a podcast entitled “Wahoo World,” giving breakdowns on various topics concerning UVA sports.

We also want to show our appreciation for others that have been so kind in lending a helping hand in a variety of ways: Chris and Crystal Graham of the Augusta Free Press, who built this site under extreme deadlines, have designed advertisements for our sponsors and have helped fix any site problems in such a generous form.

Also Scott German of AFP, who has been valuable in selling advertising for the site.

Also John Markon, Jon Golden, and Dan Grogan for their excellent photography of UVA football and basketball. Their work has truly enhanced our coverage.

For the record, a couple of folks have asked, why did I name my website JerryRatcliffe.com and why is my radio show named the Jerry Ratcliffe Show.

Believe me, it’s not out of ego. I actually wanted to name both something else but wiser people advised me that I should take advantage of having built a brand over nearly four decades of covering Virginia athletics. See, I’m coachable.

Anyways, when we founded the site, not certain about the future, we were inspired by a sign in a shop window. It was a metal sign featuring one of our heroes, John Wayne.

The slogan on the sign read: “Courage is being scared to death but saddling up anyway.”

We saddled up and haven’t regretted a moment of the ride. We hope you’ve enjoyed riding along with us.

Comments

  1. John Roache says:

    Jerry, thanks for all you do. You’re an invaluable source of information and always and terrific read and listen.

  2. Jonathan Coleman says:

    Congratulations on two great years. Your team provides the best coverage of UVA sports available. Keep it up!

  3. Frank says:

    Two years and just getting started. So glad to be here for the ride, Hooty!

  4. Chris says:

    Congrats Jerry!

  5. Jay says:

    Have enjoyed your writing for the past 25 years. Congratulations on the two year anniversary and best of luck to another 20!

    • Jerry Ratcliffe says:

      Means a lot to me that you have followed my work for 25 years. I’ll keep writing if you’ll keep reading!

  6. Jack Oakes says:

    Have so enjoyed staying close to UVa sports through JerryRatcliffe.com even though I live in NC. Thank you, Jerry! Yours is one of the best “rebound” stories I know…a great example to all of resilience, purpose, and courage!

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