USA Today's Morgan Says Cuts Are Designed To Become Aligned Toward Breaking News
USA Today Sports Media Group Senior VP/Content & Editor-in-Chief Dave Morgan said this week's editorial staff restructuring was part of an ongoing process to become much more aligned toward breaking news and develop a fully fledged digital content strategy. "This kind of process is never easy, but we're looking very broadly at our overall strategic direction, and we want much more to be about breaking news, setting the agenda, and being very digitally focused. We're implementing an entirely new set of goals and strategies, and completely redefining what the organization is," Morgan said. The outlet parted ways this week with 15 staffers out of a total editorial roster of nearly 100, with departures including writers Michael McCarthy, Tom Weir, Tom Pedulla and Mike Dodd. Several other staffers have also chosen to leave voluntarily, including Olympics writer Vicki Michaelis, who is moving to the Univ. of Georgia to become a sports journalism professor. But company execs said USA Today Sports will bulk up its headcount to about 115 people by September, not counting additional employees brought in through its new joint venture with MLBAM and recent purchases such as Big Lead Sports.