Attempting the near-impossible: Profiling Virginia’s Tony Bennett without mentioning faith

By Bobby Ross Jr. | GetReligion

Tony Bennett — the coach, not the singer — is quirky. Mysterious. Someone who believes “it’s okay to be different.”

That’s the basic storyline for an in-depth Washington Post profile of Bennett, whose Virginia Cavaliers men’s basketball team enters March Madness as the No. 1 overall seed.

Strangely enough (ghosts, anyone?), the Post manages to write 1,850 words about Bennett without any reference to terms such as “faith,” “Christian” and “prayer.”

Those familiar with Bennett will understand why that’s so remarkable.

Read the full column.

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All of my GetReligion columns (March 2018):

• Friday Five:Big Godbeat news, Billy Graham’s casket, ‘sit and shiver,’ Oprah talks to God and more. Published March 2.

• Texas ghosts: Rural Democrats in Lone Star State don’t like Trump, but what issues do matter to them? Published March 5.

• Publisher declares this news story on Johnson Amendment ‘accurate and complete,’ but is it really? Published March 6.

• ‘Now let’s just pray it’s done’: A how-to guide for reporting on Sutherland Springs conspiracy nuts. Published March 8.

Friday Five: Award-winning religion story, Down syndrome advocate, free cars at church and more. Published March 9.

• White evangelical women reportedly tiptoeing away from Trump, but big questions remain. Published March 12.

• Washington Post attempts near-impossible: Profiling Virginia’s Tony Bennett without mentioning faith. Published March 13.

• In reporting on ruling against Down syndrome abortion law, this pesky detail seems important. Published March 15.

• Friday Five: March Madness miracle, faith at the movies, newspaper layoffs and more. Published March 16.