By Heather Hope
Two of USC Annenberg’s own are writers for the new Los Angeles-based version of ESPN.com.
Undergraduate student Pedro Moura (above left, B.A. Print Journalism ’11) and alumnus Arash Markazi (above right, B.A. Print Journalism ’04) write for ESPNLosAngeles.com, which began in late December and highlights all the top sports news happening in Los Angeles. The site reports on some of the biggest names in sports, including the Dodgers, Lakers and Trojans.
Moura covers Trojan sports teams and blogs more than eight times a day with game scores, players’ injuries and recently some athletes’ reactions to new football coach Lane Kiffin’s hiring. As a sports writer for USC’s Daily Trojan and anchor for Annenberg TV News, he said his new work experience has improved his writing tremendously and gives his stories great exposure.
“My work is being read more than ever, and I get to work with actual ESPN reporters of the highest caliber each day, who critique my writing and give me the best pointers,” Moura said.
Markazi is a regular columnist for the ESPNLosAngeles.com site. He previously wrote for Sports Illustrated after graduating from USC. He said although he felt like he was already at his dream job, he was excited to try something new.
“I never expected to leave my old job, but was eager to be a part of ESPN’s latest project and vision and have found it to be an awesome opportunity for the direction of online media,” he said.
He spent his first two years in New York while with Sports Illustrated. The Sherman Oaks native said he was glad to be back home with an LA-centered publication. Like Moura, Markazi wrote for the Daily Trojan and served as the sports editor. He said he wished he had been involved with ATVN to diversify skills since he co-hosts ESPN’s radio show broadcast on 710AM and also makes television appearances for the network.
He credits Annenberg journalism professors such as Norman Corwin and the late Pulitzer Prize-winning Edwin Guthman with instilling insightful advice on developing great story ideas and acquiring sources.
“I remember being like a sponge in class and taking in all these great lessons from my instructors, who had been where I wanted to be one day,” he said.
Moura said his time at Annenberg has definitely been beneficial to him because of all the connections he has been able to make. He said he got help getting a couple internships during his freshman year, which have led to more opportunities. He said he was able to secure the job with ESPN Los Angeles when a friend who worked there recommended his name to the managing editor because of his extensive Trojan sports coverage. He said the rigorous Annenberg curriculum has prepared him for what to expect in a real news work environment.
“USC student sports journalists get to cover some of the biggest stories in the land on a weekly, even daily basis, which is some of the best training available,” he said.