Over the weekend, sports fans and journalists throughout southeast Michigan mourned the unexpected death of Detroit Free Press sports columnist Drew Sharp. He was 56.
Sharp died suddenly on Friday. His final column about Michigan State University athletics was posted over the weekend.
Detroit News sports columnist John Niyo was with Sharp the evening before he died.
“You abandon your own family to go out on the road a lot, so [the sports reporting press corps] becomes a second family,” says Niyo of the relationships between sports reporters.
Niyo says Sharp’s writing style was unique in the region because he would often purposefully spark dispute with his columns to elicit a response and engage readers in an argument.
“He cornered the market on being a contrarian… because he felt it needed to be done,” says Niyo, who adds Sharp was right more often than critics would care to admit.
But Niyo says Sharp did not have a disagreeable personality.
“Those of us who were around him knew a different person.”
Sharp was remembered by colleagues over the past few days for being incredibly kind and giving.
To hear more from Niyo on Detroit Today, click on the audio player above.