sports

The Deadliest Accident in U.S. Professional Sports History

Eric Vickrey

Professional baseball faced a similar postwar influx. More than 500 major leaguers and 4,000 minor leaguers had swapped jerseys for military fatigues during the previous four years. Two former big leaguers, Harry O’Neill and Elmer Gedeon, plus more than 100 minor-league players, lost their lives.

Crucible Mongolia: Wrestling Champions Made on the Steppes

Antonio Graceffo

The most anticipated match of the July 2021 tournament pitted Yokozuna Hakuhō Shō against Ozeki (second rank) Terunofuji, who is also Mongolian. Having two foreigners competing in the oldest and most revered Japanese sport is similar to the final game of the baseball World Series being played between Mexico and Canada, while the Americans sit back and watch. After the tournament, Mongolia’s Terunofuji was promoted to sumo’s highest rank, becoming the 73rd Yokozuna in sumo history.

Cashing in on College Athletics

George White

The college athletes who generate revenue in all sports will be compensated for the first time in the 107-year history of the NCAA if O’Bannon wins his lawsuit (O’Bannon vs. NCAA). The litigation is in the spotlight again, because the case is expected to go to court in June, and because more and more media commentators, scholars and law professors are siding with the athletes and calling for reforms.

Et Tu, Etas Unis? Soccer and the American Dream

Tyler Huggins

Since 2012, every MLS team maintains a free and full-functioning academy with moderate success. Each academy sources from local clubs, showcases, and camps, whisking away the most promising talents and training them for future MLS contracts within their respective organizations. As a model, the U.S. academies bear a considerable resemblance to the German academies, sans the $300 million euros Germany invests in youth development annually and the ideological devotion to a dominant German national squad. All that and some comparable results. 

Should College Athletes Be Paid?

Alex LaFosta

"To pay, to not to pay?" That is the question many have been asking about student athletes. As the records for professional athlete salaries begin to soar, and as more and more reports of multimillion dollar deals being made within the NCAA every year, the question that usually arises is, “Why aren’t the college athletes seeing any of this money?” NCAA President Mark Emmert stated in the Wall Street Journal in January of 2012 that paying student athletes is “a terrible idea.”

Mr. Hockey: The Gordie Howe Story

Kurt Thurber

Much like Dick Butkus or Bo Jackson, Gordie Howe was the epitome of virility. However, the Canadian-born Howe played a violent, physically grinding game at an elite level for much longer than any of his professional peers, finally retiring at age 52. Howe did it all without wearing a helmet. The film “Mr. Hockey: The Gordie Howe Story” begins at the end of Howe’s career with the Detroit Red Wings. The film depicts a predictably bored Howe who misses the day-to-day action of being a professional athlete as a figurehead in the Red Wings front office. 

Roller Derby Mania: The No Coast Derby Girls Sweep Lincoln

Anna Elizabeth Mazzariello

The Pershing Center in Lincoln, Nebraska gushes with fans.  They have eagerly gathered to support Lincoln’s No Coast Derby Girls – the local flat-track roller derby league.  Parents attempt to control their rowdy children; sallow-skinned teenagers hold hands and kiss beneath fluorescent lights; burly men sip Budweiser from plastic cups, chuckling softly.  Though rapt with curiosity, I am lamentably lost within this subculture and  ashamed that my only exposure to the feminist sport remains “Whip It”—the 2009 indie flick directed by Drew Barrymore, which highlights banked track derby in Austin, Texas. 

Al Davis (R.I.P.), A Champion of Diversity

Lee Hubbard

From New America Media: There were a lot of words used to describe Al Davis, the 82-year-old owner of the Oakland Raiders National Football franchise, when it was announced he passed away at his Oakland residence last [month]. Davis was called a legend, tough, demanding, ruthless, sneaky, renegade, pioneer, hall of famer and Oakland Raider. Davis was all of these, as well as a stand-up man for diversity in sports and in particular his team. 

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