Sports

Good soccer sportsmanship gives rise to controversy

Featured image I doubt that English Premier League soccer generates many hot takes on American sports gabfest shows. But the second tier of English soccer garnered some recently after a bizarre match between Aston Villa and Leeds United presented an outbreak of good sportsmanship. Aston Villa and Leeds United are two of English football’s blue bloods. Villa, the preeminent team in the Midlands, won a European championship in the 1980s. Leeds, the »

“Lady Bears” visit White House [UPDATED]

Featured image Yesterday, the NCAA champion Baylor University women’s basketball team visited the White House to be honored by President Trump. Unlike their male counterparts from the University of Virginia, and various other sports championship teams, the “Lady Bears” were willing and, it seems, happy to accept an invitation from Trump. Coach Kim Mulkey is no stranger to the White House. She took championship teams there during the George W. Bush and »

Charles Barkley, Still Dunking

Featured image I’m not much of an NBA fan (I prefer college hoops) but I did always enjoy watching Charles Barkley—”the round mound of rebound.” At only six-foot-six, Barkley always played like he was 6’10” around the rim. I even more enjoy listening to him talk. I remember when he was on the US Olympic “Dream Team” in the early 1990s, and a TV reporter asking him about their first round opponent, »

The best thing…

Featured image Everyone is complaining about yesterday’s supposedly boring Super Bowl game — that would be Super Bowl LIII, if you’re counting in Latin. With the rules of the game having been recalibrated continually to favor never ending offense, I appreciated the return of defense. If the halftime show was concededly a lowlight, the singing of the national anthem must be deemed the highlight. Out strolled Gladys Knight to sing the anthem. »

Youth movement?

Featured image This morning, the Washington Post’s sports page featured an article called (in the paper edition) “The inexperience advantage.” The sub-title was “Rams’ 33-year-old McVay embodies national trend of unseasoned leader bringing fresh ideas to job.” Sean McVay’s success as a 33-year-old NFL coach is a remarkable story. The fact that his Rams lost the Super Bowl tonight doesn’t diminish it. But the claim by the Post’s Kent Babb that McVay »

Politics Comes to High School Basketball

Featured image Is there any corner of our lives into which politics does not intrude? It doesn’t seem so. Now it’s high school basketball. The Star Tribune reports: Jordan [High School] has pulled out of an invitational basketball event scheduled for Monday — Martin Luther King Day — being hosted by Minneapolis Roosevelt. Why? The fallout continues from last week’s dispute over a Donald Trump re-election flag being displayed by fans of »

The Hypocrisy of Nike

Featured image We were surprised when Nike launched a major advertising campaign featuring former quarterback Colin Kaepernick, and even more surprised when it seemed to work. Nike’s sales went up, and the company attributed the increase in part to Kaepernick chic. The tag line of Nike’s Kaepernick ad was, “Believe in something. Even if it means sacrificing everything.” Of course, Colin Kaepernick didn’t sacrifice everything by taking an anti-American stance–only, at most, »

Reuben Foster, Colin Kaepernick, and leftist sportswriting

Featured image Reuben Foster is a linebacker who starred at the University of Alabama and was a first-round draft pick of the San Francisco 49ers. Battling injury, he played in 10 games for the 49ers last year, his rookie season, and 6 games so far this year. In February, Foster’s girl friend accused him of domestic violence. Police arrested Foster. However, she later recanted, claiming that she made up the allegations to »

ESPN sacks Jemele Hill

Featured image Jemele Hill, the sports highlights presenter who fancies herself a political pundit, is finally out at ESPN. The network will buy out her contract, reportedly worth $2.5 million. Hill is best know for idiotically calling President Trump a “white supremacist.” Thereafter she continued to offer hack left-wing political commentary on Twitter, in violation of company policy. ESPN’s new president, Jimmy Pitaro, reportedly wants to get the network out of political »

Republicans Buy Sneakers Too

Featured image Yesterday on the Laura Ingraham show, I interviewed Clay Travis, the only person to have been banned by both ESPN and CNN. Travis is one of the country’s best-known sports commentators–the host of a Fox radio show and founder of Outkick the Coverage. Travis is the author of a brand-new book, Republicans Buy Sneakers Too: How the Left Is Ruining Sports With Politics. I had time only to skim the »

Adam Greenberg steps up again

Featured image I’d never heard of Adam Greenberg before I went to see him speak three years ago at Temple of Aaron in St. Paul. From an early age Adam was a gifted athlete and driven competitor. He excelled at three sports — baseball, basketball, and soccer — but baseball was his first love. He played baseball at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. As a junior in 2002, he »

English Sports for the Non-English

Featured image Some years ago, during a leisure hour (or three) in a British pub up in Yorkshire, I asked an English acquaintance if he could explain Cricket to me. He paused a moment, and said, “No—I can’t.” And so I never have figured out anything about that peculiar game. Which is preface to this brilliantly done five-minute parody of British sports. Well worth your time: »

Dan Rather: Still crazy after all these years

Featured image Dan Rather tweeted this about LeBron James’ decision to sign with the Los Angeles Lakers: We know LeBron James has been outspoken about Trump. So it makes sense to head to California, the heartland of the #resistance. The fact that he will be trying to resist the dominance of the Warriors is an added plot twist. It made sense for James to sign with the Lakers because they play in »

Time for the “Soscars”?

Featured image The Whirled Cup soccer tournament is under way over in Russia right now, which is why there’s a file open for Paul in the Missing Persons bureau of the local police. Anyway, while I am a fan of really awful b-movies like They Live, and, needless to say, all the Sharknado classics, as well as the neglected Birdemic, to appreciate truly awful acting you have to be a connoisseur of soccer. »

Scalise makes the play

Featured image A year after suffering a grave wound in the crazed assassination spree attempted against the House GOP baseball team by Bernie Bro James Hodgkinson, House Majority Whip Steve Scalise improbably took the field to play this year’s game against House Democrats. The New York Times story on the attempted assassination summarized the damage done to Scalise: “His injuries are extensive, and he was in critical condition Wednesday night, MedStar Washington »

Making the Trans Run on Time

Featured image Back during the good old days of the Cold War, Robin Williams had a joke that ran: “I really want to see sex made an Olympic sport, just to see what the East Germans come up with.” Back in those days, it was widely understood that East German athletes not only used performance-enhancing drugs, but in a few cases it was speculated that some of East Germany’s “women” athletes were »

Trump’s absurd olive branch offer to NFL protesters

Featured image I understood from the beginning that the Trump presidency would be a circus, but I didn’t expect a sideshow this bizarre. President Trump has asked NFL players to recommend which criminals he should pardon. Suddenly, the NFL kneelers have been transformed from unpatriotic sons-of-bitches to Trump’s partner in doling out justice and righting wrongs. I never thought the players were sons-of-bitches (unpatriotic, yes at least in some cases), but they »