Sports

Venezuela: Now a Shortage of Baseball Players?

Featured image It surprised no one when the news came out a couple months ago that Venezuela’s socialist economy had run out of one of the easiest products to stock—toilet paper—but today the Wall Street Journal reports that most of the U.S. major league baseball talent scouting and development operations in Venezuela are closing down: The Mariners are the latest Major League Baseball team to pull out of Venezuela, leaving only four »

Death of the Copy Editor

Featured image A sage friend once remarked that the decline of copy editing in book and newspaper publishing coincided with the decline in the number of priests defrocked by the Catholic Church.  Sounds reasonable to me. And far be it from me to jump on just any old typo, since a number of them get through here at Power Line (chiefly because I seldom spot my own typos, which is apparently typical »

Not Politics, Basketball. Worse, an Inside Joke.

Featured image You might have to be from the Upper Midwest to fully appreciate this one. My son texted me this map, which purports to show the results of an ESPN poll on Saturday’s Kentucky-Wisconsin matchup. Is it legit? I wouldn’t bet on it, but, like Homer and Shakespeare, it expresses a higher truth: Whatever my fellow Minnesotans may think, I’m rooting for Wisconsin. »

GOOSE, SKY, AND MONSTER MASH — ALL-TIME KENTUCKY BASKETBALL GREATS

Featured image Over the weekend, Wisconsin, Kentucky, Michigan State, and Duke advanced to what looks like an attractive Final Four in the Men’s NCAA basketball tournament. Once again, I will present all-time all-star teams for these programs. I have previously done so for Wisconsin and Kentucky, who were in the Final Four last year. Wisconsin’s list will need to be redone. As for Kentucky, the combination of (1) a phenomenal history, (2) »

NCAA, the New PC Police?

Featured image Yesterday the NCAA announced that it is deeply concerned about Indiana’s just-passed Religious Freedom Restoration Act, and intends to scrutinize Indiana carefully to determine whether the state is fit to host events like the Final Four, scheduled to take place in Indianapolis next week: The NCAA national office and our members are deeply committed to providing an inclusive environment for all our events. We are especially concerned about how this »

Hitler Learns About Pete Carroll’s Goal Line Call

Featured image Actually Pete Carroll had the right inclination to pass on second down with under 30 seconds to play and only one time out.  But the better call would have been to have Wilson roll out and have the option of running, throwing for a receiver in the corner, or throwing it away.  The inside slant pass was the poorest option.  Couldn’t happen to a more deserving jerk than Carroll, who »

This day in basketball history — high school basketball goes national

Featured image Fifty years ago today, a sold-out Cole Field House at the University of Maryland hosted what is probably the most famous high school basketball game ever played. It featured Lew Alcindor’s Power Memorial of New York City against DeMatha of Hyattsville, Maryland. DeMatha won, 46-43. The Washington Post has a good article about the game that draws on the recollections of key DeMatha participants. Alcindor (now Kareem Abdul-Jabbar), accommodating as »

The Number One Mystery of Deflate-gate

Featured image Is Deflate-gate the dumbest story in the history of sports, or what? I suppose it is remotely possible that someone associated with the Patriots might have deflated some footballs, or perhaps it was sabotage by the Colts–after all, the Patriots played much better after halftime when the balls were re-inflated. But speculation about such skulduggery is hardly necessary. The NFL has been closemouthed about the facts its investigation has revealed »

At Last, the Kind of Inflation Americans Care About!

Featured image As of today, more Americans can tell you the NFL’s rule for the inflation of footballs than know how many Congressmen are in the House of Representatives. And which was more eagerly awaited, this year’s State of the Union speech or Bill Belichick’s press conference this morning? It isn’t even close. The extent to which Americans’ interest in sports exceeds their interest in politics is extraordinary. Over the years, some »

Harry Jaffa on Woody Hayes

Featured image Congratulations to Ohio State on winning the national championship last night (though for the record I detest the entire BCS derangement of college football of the last decade). I’m reminded that Harry Jaffa taught at Ohio State in the late 1950s and early 1960s, and was friendly with Hayes.  He told this story upon Hayes’s passing: In 1956 Ohio State was placed on a one-year probation because of Woody’s having »

On Messi, Mourinho, and Martinez

Featured image Why not end the year with a soccer post? This one will cover (1) the world player of the year award, (2) the EPL title race, and (3) Everton. 1. Three players are finalists for world player of the year, to be announced next month. The three are Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi, and Manuel Neuer. Ronaldo has been phenomenal this year for Real Madrid, but did not shine at the »

The Redskins and the Cowboys — what a difference two years make

Featured image Tomorrow, the Washington Redskins and the Dallas Cowboys meet in the final game of the regular NFL season. Two years ago, these teams also played in the regular season finale. Then, first place in the NFC East was on the line. The Redskins, led by their brilliant rookie quarterback Robert Griffin III, prevailed. Tomorrow, nothing much is on the line. The Cowboys have already won the NFC East; the Redskins »

Sportsmanship’s Luck

Featured image In a college course on the literature of the Renaissance we read Montaigne’s essay “That to philosophize is to learn to die.” Talking with me about it outside of class, the professor remarked that he thought participation in sports taught the wisdom of Montaigne. He recalled watching a Dartmouth team being trounced on the field, yet continuing to perform intensely with a kind of detachment reflected in Montaigne’s teaching. He »

His level of violence deemed too serious to comprehend, Ray Rice is reinstated

Featured image The indefinite suspension of Ray Rice, the NFL running back who brutally assaulted his then-fiance, now wife, has been lifted on appeal as the result of an arbitrator’s decision. Rice has been reinstated by the League and is free to sign with any team. The appeal was decided by Barbara Jones, a former U.S. District Court Judge, who served as the arbitrator. As reported by ESPN, Jones ruled that the »

Forfeit this, NCAA

Featured image We have written from time to time about various aspects of the Penn State child molestation scandal invovling one-time assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky. Our focus has been on the aftermath of that scandal, specifically the rush to judgment against coach Joe Paterno and the overly harsh penalities levied against the Penn State football program by the NCAA. That the NCAA overreached in penalizing Penn State is now evident from »

What’s in the Washington Redskins name? Plenty for local politicians

Featured image Most of those who followed the election campaign carefully are aware that Ed Gillespie ran an ad about the Washington Redskins name-change issue during the broadcast of the Monday Night Football game between the Redskins and the Dallas Cowboys. I missed the ad because I was in Italy. But my daughter, who analyzes public opinion for a living, told me about it when I returned. She thought it was a »

Coach K on President O

Featured image Duke basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski spoke at the Association of the U.S. Army conference last month. According to the Daily Beast, he was critical of President Obama’s “no boots on the ground” approach to combatting ISIS. Coach K reportedly stated: I know it’s upsetting to many of you when hear ‘no boots on the ground.’ It upsets me too, because that’s like saying I’m not going to play two of »