NFL Wants Super Bowl Acts to Pay to Perform

Sam Richmond, writing for FanSided:

The league is now asking potential acts for the 2015 halftime show if they would be willing to pay to perform, according to the Wall Street Journal.

The Journal also reports that the NFL is down to three possible performers: Katy Perry, Rihanna and Coldplay.

Good luck with that.

On the Jets, iPads, and Their Last Super Bowl Win

Brian Costello, reporting for the New York Post:

Like many teams, the Jets have switched to digital playbooks on their iPads. Players must enter a passcode to gain access.

The passcode? 1-9-6-9. As in 1969, the last time the Jets won it all.

“It’s just something to remember — 1969 is the last time this team was perfect,” defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson said. “That’s a long time ago.”

However motivational, 1-9-6-9 isn’t a very secure passcode. They should switch to a longer one.

‘Bad Call’

Fritz Huber for The Paris Review, on TV sports commentators in the US:

After a prolonged TV spectacle like college football’s Bowl Week (whose contests last year included the Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl and the Taxslayer.com Bowl, the latter being only a slight improvement on the all-time most absurd Galleryfurniture.com Bowl), watching English Premiership matches or Six Nations rugby on BBC feels like a cultural upgrade. There’s less advertising. There’s less analysis of bullshit statistics (“Headed into this matchup, the Kentucky Wildcats are 11-3 in games played within four days of their coach’s annual colonoscopy”). And, on British television, the commentators’ linguistic repertoires don’t feel as inhibited; there’s more room for an occasional flourish. Why can’t we have a color analyst like Ray Hudson, who, in his exuberance, will announce that we’ve just witnessed “a Bernini sculpture of a goal,” or claim that watching Lionel Messi “softens the hard corners of our lives”?

Read more...

Jack Nicklaus: Tiger Can Still Break My Majors Record

Joe Posnanski, writing for GolfChannel.com:

“I think the guy is just too good,” he said. “I don’t know what is happening between his ears right now … somebody said the other day that they think he has the yips with the driver, and I think that is a pretty good assessment. I had never heard of that, but if you get it in your head that you can’t hit a driver in the fairway, you aren’t going to hit it in the fairway very much.

Read more...

‘Michael Sam Focuses On Making the Rams, Not History’

William C. Rhoden, writing for The New York Times;

The reality is that Sam, whether he likes it or not, is a trailblazer. He has made a significant impact — on the league, on fans and on an American sports culture that is not the most progressive — before playing an N.F.L. game.

He continues to attract attention and stir debate at training camp, where the Rams will decide whether to keep him. Regardless of what happens, Sam continues to raise awareness and smash stereotypes.

Read more...

On Timelessness and Time

Mike Plugh, “Baseball: Past American Time”:

It’s also important to remember that baseball is a rural game, a game of grass and dirt, of wood and chalk and pine tar. Baseball is a game of wide open spaces. We call the playing space a park, in contrast to courts, rinks, and gridirons. The sport itself also is the essence of timelessness, which fits with its rustic mores. The clock is an urbanizing technology, one of synchronization and uniformity, time being measured precisely to produce regularity in our routines.

Read more...

‘LeBron’s Mighty Mind’

Brian Windhorst, writing for ESPN.com:

He is 6-foot-8 or so, and 260 pounds or so. He has striking athleticism even while in a crowd of some of the greatest athletes on the planet. He has a strong work ethic that manifests itself in expansive summer programs that are at the heart of the steady development of his game over the years. He is ambidextrous, playing right-handed but doing most other things in his life left-handed, a trait that has helped him become one of the great scorers in league history. He has an expansive interest in the history of the game, which he uses both as a teaching resource and to generate motivation in a time where he has very few true contemporaries.

Read more...

On Levi’s Stadium

Ryan Lawler, writing for TechCrunch:

Levi’s Stadium, which had its ribbon-cutting ceremony yesterday, is a beautiful arena. It comfortably seats 68,500 fans and can add additional seating to hold 75,000 for events like the Super Bowl. There are two giant screens on either side of the field, with a viewing area of 19,200 square feet between them.

But that’s the kind of thing that we’ve come to expect from new modern arenas. What’s really cool about Levi’s Stadium is the technology that has been built into it.

Read more...

On Going Home Again

Dave Zirin for The Nation, on what it means that LeBron is going back to Cleveland:

Read more...

LeBron: ‘I’m Coming Home’

King James himself, in a statement on SI.com:

When I left Cleveland, I was on a mission. I was seeking championships, and we won two. But Miami already knew that feeling. Our city hasn’t had that feeling in a long, long, long time. My goal is still to win as many titles as possible, no question. But what’s most important for me is bringing one trophy back to Northeast Ohio.

[...]

Read more...