This Wednesday, our lead story seemed obvious from the beginning. It was the morning after Game 1 of the World Series, which is obviously a huge topic for the USC community as well as the people of Los Angeles. There were multiple angles to cover, many elements we could potentially obtain, and plenty of interesting stories. Ultimately, World Series coverage made up the majority of the first part of our show.
But the decision may not always be so obvious. This Wednesday didn't demand much discussion regarding the lead story based on the clear importance of the Dodgers being in the World Series. Yet past weeks haven't offered this immediate clarity. Generally speaking, I choose the lead story based on what seems most pressing, most talked about, or the story that holds the most significance for the greatest number of people.
As a teammate, the discussions surrounding the lead story happen in the morning meeting and directly after. While reporters are pitching, there tends to be a story that stands out at meeting some of the criteria described above. The lead producer certainly has the most discretion in choosing the lead story, but the teammates do have a chance to provide their input in early talks about the stories of the day.
On days when there is no obvious lead, the challenge becomes spinning a story and finding an angle that allows it to become something that can be at the top of the show. At the very least, these stories must be highly interesting if they don't fit the criteria that a typical lead story meets.