Posts in category Sports


JournalismRecommended ReadingSports

Read It: Patrick Hruby’s Story About Medical Marijuana In Sports

Thought this was a solid report by Patrick Hruby for SportsOnEarth about the benefits that medical marijuana could have for athletes:  Guys popped pills, Vicodin and Oxycontin, serious stuff, at first a few and then a few more. Guys took injections, Marcaine and Toradol, potent liquid lifelines that wouldn’t be out of place in a trauma ward. Jackson did the same, swinging the rubber hammer. The shots made him uneasy. The pills made him groggy. …

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JournalismRecommended ReadingSports

Read It: ‘Allen Iverson, NBA Icon, Struggles With Life After Basketball’ by Kent Babb

Kent Babb at the Washington Post wrote a good story about Allen Iverson:  Three years after Iverson’s last NBA game, the spotlight has shifted from his play to his flaws. His refusal back then to play by society’s rules was seen as an independent player’s quirks, part of the character and the brand, same as his cornrows and tattoos. Practicing with hangovers added to the legend. Skipping team functions and refusing to obey the league’s dress code …

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LifeSports

About That Awesome New LAA Kramer Sneed’s Name

It’s making the rounds online now: Former Los Angeles Angels OF Vernon Wells just got traded to the New York Yankees in exchange for cash and a couple of prospects, OF Exicardo Cayones and LHP Kramer Sneed. Also making the rounds: Those are awesome names, and hey, isn’t that one dude named after the Seinfield Cosmo Kramer guy!?

Because this is an important question and because I’m an awesome and resourceful journalist … and because I’m the dude’s older brother … I just spoke with his/our mom.

I knew my parents didn’t name him after Cosmo, but I couldn’t remember WHY they named him Kramer. 

According to the Matriarch Sneed, “Jerry Seinfield copied me! Get that clear — we did it first! He was born in ’88. Seinfield started in ’90. Our idea.”

So, you know, why?

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DistractionLifeSports

UNC Fan Cries, Florida Gulf Coast Rocks

Because Mondays are terrible, I give you this: His buddy looks super proud to be there beside him in that moment.  Although I won’t lie, I felt about the same way when Butler went down. I’d picked them to play Duke in the national championship game, so my bracket is dunzo.  But at least we all have Florida Gulf Coast, right? Are they a fun team to watch, or are they the MOST FUN TEAM …

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LifeSports

Call It!

FIBA proposed 3-on-3 basketball for the 2016 Olympics in Rio. I and my two younger brothers, Kramer and Logan, are totally trying out. Kramer’s the 6-4, 200-pound relentless winner. Logan’s the 6-2, 190-pound pure shooter who can also dunk. And I’m the 6-1, 195-pound guy who tries to drive and gets blocked and just tries to get some rebounds and not be a liability. We gonna dominate, though. Or something. And I’m writing about the experience …

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Sports

Contest: Great Moments In Sporting Failure

I feel like giving away a copy of my book, The Edge of Legend. Therefore, I declare a contest.  Tell me, in the comments, a story of a time when playing a sport that you just totally failed. The story that makes me laugh, cringe, or openly weep the most wins the book. I pay shipping, everything.  I’ll start.  Freshman year of high school. Baseball game, away. I’m a catcher. Pop fly foul ball. It’s …

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JournalismLifeSports

@BIGSPORTSWRITER On the State of Sports Discussion: ‘The Great Ones Are Weary of Those Who Read Them’

@BIGSPORTSWRITER, our mysterious masked Twitter hero, got to thinking about the state of sports discusison last night, particularly how people can’t just debate, they have to WIN. It began when he was talking about watching Ken Griffey Jr. and Andruw Jones play and bemoaning the sudden descent of AJ’s career. People reacted with their usual aggression and vitriol, and then Mr. Sports Journo went contemplative, and then I spent a few minutes copying, pasting, and lightly editing said contemplations. For your reading and thinking pleasure: 

Knowing somebody’s VORP and win shares isn’t the same as seeing them play. And not because “seeing them play” means I know more. It doesn’t. Often it means I know or knew less. It simply means that I can sit in a room and tell you what it was like to watch somebody play. No finality, no punctuation. Just stories.

Good lord—I mean, if you don’t love sports for the stories, what the hell are you watching for? What the hell are you following me for? Sports dialogue can be just that, dialogue. A mutual trading of ideas. I’m not here to declare victory over any of you. That’s not fun.

I don’t know when it got like this. And I don’t mean twitter—I mean talking sports. I’m not sure when the win/loss columns shifted from the box scores to the bars and water coolers. When it became more important to be right about a topic, or feel like you bested somebody than just talking it out.

I can remember seeing Around the Horn for the first time, and seeing actual points being given and taken away during conversation. And thinking to myself, Holy hell. They

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LifeProjectsSports

American Idol Winner Scotty McCreery Sets Career High For Single-Game Strikeouts

Obviously inspired by my interview with him coming out in that week’s issue of ESPN The Magazine, American Idol winner Scotty McCreery Friday night struck out a career-high eight batters in his Senior Night start for Garner Magnet High School against Southeast Raleigh.  I already rambled about Scotty in a previous blog post, and I swear, I’m not just going on about the kid because he’s famous. I really love the fact that he’s made time …

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LifeProjectsSneed WorkSports

Who Kenny Powers Is Based Off Of, Whether He Could Beat Up Ricky Vaughn, the Sport Danny McBride is Actually Good At, and How He Learned To Pitch

Danny McBride didn’t know how to throw a baseball when he started filming for the cult HBO comedy Eastbound & Down.

For the uninformed: McBride plays the salty-mouthed, mullet-wearing burned out pitcher many believe is modeled after notorious former Atlanta Braves closer John Rocker. I was lucky enough to snag an interview with McBride for ESPN The Magazine a few weeks ago. You can read it here. Lots of good material ended up not making the final print version—hey, no worries, it happens all the time—so in honor of the show’s Season 3 premiere tonight, I give you all kinds of extra goodies below, including the inside scoop on the sport McBride used to be something of a prodigy at, plus the truth about that John Rocker rumor. Enjoy. 

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Sports

Team USA Super Scorer Abby Wambach is Sort of B.A. [Video]

 

Abby Wambach is, alongside Team USA goalkeeper Hope Solo, the newest sports sensation here in America. Scored some crucial goals and whatnot, and now she’s leading USA into battle with Japan for the World Cup.

The Japanese should be afraid. Very afraid.

The below video comes from the United States’s 2-1 upset loss to Mexico last year.

Wambach goes for a ball. Bashes her head. Bleeds everywhere. Gets it stapled. Stands up. 

B.A.

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LifeSports

“Grossly outnumbered [we] stood to fight.” A Vancouver Police Officer’s Response to Vancouver Rioter’s YouTube Apologies

 

On June 15, the Boston Bruins beat the Vancouver Canucks to win the NHL Finals and the Stanley Cup. The residents of Vancouver did not take it well, taking to the streets in what soon became a full-blown riot full of burning and overturned cars, destroyed stores and far too many innocents left wounded. Some of the rioters are now taking to YouTube to apologize. Certain police officers aren’t appreciating those apologies. We’ll get to those momentarily.

It was further evidence of how remarkably capable we are of darkness, disturbing that YouTube commenters wrote, “Humans are disgusting.” But in the madness there also rose proof of our equally great capacity for good. It was dwarfed by the darkness. It always is. But there was light. (Videos and the police officer’s letter after the break.) 

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LifeSports

Jose Canseco, 46-Year-Old Player/Manager/Curious Person, Still Playing Baseball

 

As you’ll see in the below video, it’s before a crowd of what appears to be zero. As he even says, some of the pitchers he faces are half his age, are young enough to be his sons. But as he also says, and I’m paraphrasing, “If you find something that makes you feel young, you hold onto that as long as you possibly mentally and physically can.”

So what if in that interview he totally misuses the word “transcend” multiple times? Here’s to Jose. He’s been branded a cheater, a sellout, a snitch, a headcase. Yeah, sure, maybe. But one thing I give the guy:

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LifeSports

Medium Cheddar

Pull into the Panera parking lot. See them in the corner of the lot, where plenty can, but they’re all alone. He wraps his arms around her shoulders and she wraps hers around his torso. They hold on for six, seven, ten seconds. I just watch them. It’s the journalist in me. Sometimes it makes me a creeper. But I watch. 

I know they have to really like each other, because it’s 100 degrees outside and they’re just holding on, holding on like that’s all they have in the world. To me, it’s just a guy and a girl hugging, but to them … I’m pretty sure they’re not all each other has in the world, but in this moment, they look like they’re all they need. 

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Sports

Good People Don’t Need Jesus (But You Do)

Instead of reading something I wrote today, head over to jeffpearlman.com, where Jeff Pearlman—hence the name of the site—interviewed an Ashland pastor and amazingly hardcore Cincinnati Reds fan named Drew Snyder, author of Good People Don’t Need Jesus (But You Do)

They were tremendous. They cover everything, from the beginning of time, to science, to homosexuality, to heaven and hell. Seriously intense stuff, atheist versus Christian, in a knock-down, drag-out — okay, it was actually a pretty amicable exchange, which only makes it more awesome, because some of this stuff you see the screaming heads on TV explode over.

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