Can popularity ruin a sport?: Rafa Honigstein on how success has changed the Budesliga.
"That rise to all-conquering prominence has attracted the country’s brightest minds and developed into a highly professional, productive industry. But football’s heightened social relevance is also reflected in the sort of insufferably grim, po-faced seriousness that used to be confined to political struggles or actual tribal conflicts.
People Who Like Sport Remember Their Lives Better Than People Who Don't.: A long rambling look through 2005. Life, death, divorce. And cricket.
Served up on a platter for SportsFilter: the question of which is the superior sport, cricket or baseball?
Requiem for Phillip Hughes: "So rest in peace my little brother. I'll see you out in the middle."
MLB umpire Dale Scott comes out as gay in quietest way possible.: (Scott) has worked three World Series, three All-Star Games, two no-hitters and numerous playoff games. He is gay and married to his partner of 28 years. That last fact is just part of who Dale Scott is and has had no impact on his abilities as an umpire for the past 29 seasons. Yet it is understandably the one that most people will notice, because Scott is the first Major League Baseball umpire to publicly say he is gay while active (and the first out active male official in the NBA, NHL, NFL or MLB).
ESPN Gets Ready to Launch Its First Web Video Subscription Service — For Cricket’s World Cup: ESPN's efforts to sell streaming video subscriptions for some sports programming without requiring viewers to pay for cable TV could start early next year.
People familiar with ESPN's plans say that Russell Wolff, who heads up the company's international group, is spearheading the plan to sell online access in the U.S. Earlier this year, Wolff pegged cricket's U.S. fan base at 30 million.
The Rise and Fall of The Great Kamala: how James Harris from Mississippi became a Ugandan giant.
Lisa Saxon, the woman who helped change sports writing forever.: A profile well worth a read from Vice Sports.
The End of Daisy Buchanan's: a Boston institution "where anything can happen".
The NBPA Makes History With The Hiring Of A Female Executive Director: Receiving 32 of 36 possible votes, Michele Roberts takes over the position left vacant after Billy Hunter was fired amid accusations of shady business practices. Roberts becomes the first woman elected to lead a union representing male professional athletes.
"That makes two of us, doesn’t it Steve?": Mike Vaccaro on New York sports teams, Steve Philllips and Lupica.
Before televised sports were pervasive and the Internet a nonstop gusher of sports trivia, Mr. Hollander found a niche in the market by annually providing statistics, team rosters, records, schedules and predictions for the coming season in the form of brick-size tomes he titled "Complete Handbooks."
In Fake Classes Scandal, UNC Fails Its Athletes—and Whistle-Blower: Beginning in the 1990s and continuing at least through 2011, UNC’s Department of African, African American, and Diaspora Studies offered more than 200 lecture courses that never met. The department also sponsored hundreds of independent study classes of equally dubious value. Internal reviews have identified forged faculty signatures and more than 500 grades changed without authorization. The students affected were disproportionately football and basketball players. Behind the cover of this week's edition.
The most valuable "brands" in sports:
A Forbes click-through-the-pictures list of the 40 most valuable brands in sports. It's divided into 4 categories (top 10 in each): businesses, teams, events, and athletes.
How the NFL Fleeces Taxpayers: Easterbrook lights into the NFL and politicians.
R&A will look at gender issue after British Open: TL;DR: Ain't no big thang, chums.
"The names are all included in an extraordinary batch of records from Biogenesis, an anti-aging clinic tucked into a two-story office building just a hard line drive's distance from the UM campus. They were given to New Times by an employee who worked at Biogenesis before it closed last month and its owner abruptly disappeared. The records are clear in describing the firm's real business: selling performance-enhancing drugs, from human growth hormone (HGH) to testosterone to anabolic steroids."
The Aboriginal Innings: Australia's first national cricket team were all indigenous. What has happened since then? A thoughtful piece from the Global Mail.
HoboJacket: Some MIT guys have a... great? idea: buy clothes from schools you hate and give them to the homeless. They get warm, and you get the chance of seeing someone begging for spare change in a Bulldogs jacket. Is this a brilliantly terrible idea or a terribly brilliant one?
Marvin Miller, 1917-2012: Miller, the most important figure in the MLBPA's history, died today at 95. He helped Curt Flood challenge the reserve clause, which led to free agency and the wonderfully peaceful sports labor situation we have today.
SpoFi Holiday Giving Project: One World Futbal: Inspired by images of Darfur child refugees playing soccer using trash instead of a ball surrounded by barbed wire, amid hovels made of plastic, cardboard and sticks Tim Jahnigen developed a ball made of a closed-cell foam that makes it durable, doesn't need a pump to inflate and has a "cap" that allows the ball to re-inflate, even if punctured. Since so many of us are soccer fans I thought we might band together to buy a few balls for the project as a group holiday project. The cost is $25 per ball and I'd like to try to raise $500.
UCI claims 'moral authority' to lead cycling: Agreeing that wrong-doing uncovered by other investigators after years of denial (and possibly coverup) enables one to retain "moral authority." Mmmkay!
In Stadium Building Spree, U.S. Taxpayers Lose $4 Billion: Quantifying what has long been a sore point on SpoFi. Includes a nice contrast between Jerry Jones' public palazzo and the even more expensive but privately financed new stadium in the Meadowlands.
Boom goes the dynamite! Explosive book about Armstrong doping comes out.:
After reading the book, no doubt is left in the reviewer's mind as to Armstrong's guilt.
Sports Artist Leroy Neiman Dies: Legendary sports artist Leroy Neiman died Wednesday at 91. "I've zeroed in on what you would call action and excellence. ... Everybody who does anything to try to succeed has to give the best of themselves," Neiman said in a 2008 interview.
North Dakota voters overwhelmingly decide to do away with UND's 'Fighting Sioux' Nickname: As a part of yesterday's primary election, more than two-thirds of voters cast "yes" for Measure 4, overturning the Legislature-passed code from 2011 which required UND to use the Fighting Sioux nickname. The measure also passed in Reservation County, which encompasses most of the Standing Rock Sioux Indian Reservation.
Should athletic scholarships come with a 4-year guarantee?: If you buy that star athletes are compensated with a valuable education, consider this complicating fact: An athletic scholarship is not a four-year educational guarantee. What few college sports fans—and not enough college recruits—realize is that a university can yank that scholarship after one, two, or three years without cause. Coach doesn’t like you? He’s free to cut you loose. Sitting the bench? You could lose your free ride to a new recruit. From Slate.com
scha·den·freu·de: "Pleasure derived by someone from another person's misfortune."
N.J. state troopers face probe for 'Death Race 2012' down Parkway to AC: Brandon Jacobs, recently of the Super Bowl champion
NJNY Giants, was one of the alleged racers. "In the complaints, obtained by The Star-Ledger, witnesses said that in the early afternoon of March 30, they saw two State Police patrol cars with their emergency lights flashing driving in front of and behind the southbound caravan, which included dozens of Porsches, Lamborghinis, Ferraris and other vehicles, all with their license plates covered with tape."
Fair Ball Uganda Documentary: Short film on the Uganda/Canada Pearl of Africa Series Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Aftershow travelling through Uganda, Jimmy Rollins raps in Uganda, Uganda's Mr Baseball & Images of Uganda
Super Bowl Mayor’s Bet: Politicians' bets over sporting events tend to fall into one of a few categories: There's the Food Bet, in which both sides offer up local delicacies. There's the Good Deed Bet, in which the losing mayor (or governor, or whatever) must perform some sort of community service. There's also the Do-Something-Embarrassing Bet, which usually involves wearing the winning team's jersey in front of cameras, but can take other forms as well.
Paterno speaks for 1st time since firing: Speaking to a WaPo reporter in his hospital room, "former Penn State coach Joe Paterno says he 'didn't know which way to go' after an assistant coach came to him in 2002 saying he had seen retired defensive coordinator Jerry Sandusky sexually abusing a boy."
Bottles tied to genitals in Manitoba hockey hazing: A 15-year-old hockey player in Manitoba was forced to parade around the dressing room with water bottles tied to his genitals, the teen's parents alleged in an effort to end hazing rituals in minor hockey.
Two teams, Two countries, One passion: This summer, the Ugandan Little League team’s hard work and determination had won them the title of 1st African team in history to earn the right to compete in the Little League World Series. Winning the Middle East/Africa Division for 11 and 12 year olds against Saudi Arabia in July, earned them an all-expenses paid trip to the August 2011 World Series in Williamsport, PA., USA. The youngsters were scheduled to play the Canadian team from Langley, BC, in what would have been an historic moment for Africa. However, just 2 weeks before that game was to take place, Uganda's request for visas was denied by the U.S. State Department. The following is a short film interviewing with some of the Ugandan players & coaches: Baseball changing lives in Uganda
The Shame of College Sports: A litany of scandals in recent years have made the corruption of college sports constant front-page news. We profess outrage each time we learn that yet another student-athlete has been taking money under the table. But the real scandal is the very structure of college sports, wherein student-athletes generate billions of dollars for universities and private companies while earning nothing for themselves. Here, a leading civil-rights historian makes the case for paying college athletesand reveals how a spate of lawsuits working their way through the courts could destroy the NCAA.