Sports

Sports news

When Jason Taylor played professional football, his name struck terror into opposing quarterbacks. Now that he's retired, that name may soon adorn a plaque in the Hall of Fame.

For a reason why, look to seasons like the one Taylor had in 2006, when he was playing defensive end for the Miami Dolphins. He was named the NFL's Defensive Player of the Year that season, racking up 13.5 sacks, recovering two fumbles and even returning two interceptions — quite a feat for a lineman.

If there's one rule in American sports that is universally despised, it is the National Basketball Association's stipulation that a player cannot be drafted out of high school, but must put in an extra year playing somewhere — invariably at college. It makes a sham of both education and teamwork, and when the best kids are picked up, the policy is properly ridiculed as "one-and-done."

The NCAA has reached a settlement with former athletes that provides $75 million for medical monitoring and research into head injuries. The settlement also calls for a change in the way schools handle head trauma.

As USA Today explains, the NCAA currently requires that member schools only have a concussion management plan. The settlement would require schools to make changes to their policies and "institute return-to-play guidelines."

When a runner's heart stops during a marathon, it gets a lot of press — even though it's actually a pretty rare event. A more common killer among runners, and a condition that needs more prevention efforts, is heatstroke, according to a study by Israeli researchers.

Tony La Russa's tenure as manager of the Chicago White Sox, Oakland A's and St. Louis Cardinals is legendary. La Russa, who on Sunday will be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame, won a total of 2,728 games — more than any Major League Baseball manager in the past 60 years.

And when he hung up his jersey for good after the Cardinals made a historic late-season run in 2011, La Russa became the first manager to retire immediately after winning a world championship.

Anybody who possesses a scintilla of good taste (and/or decency) is against the Washington football team using its longtime nickname. I don't have to scrounge for Brownie points by getting all indignant about it.

The one person who is most adamant about keeping the name is Daniel Snyder, who owns the Washington football franchise, and who appears to be either especially stubborn, or insensitive or both.

The obscene nickname is, of course, Redskins, and increasingly it's been suggested that we in the media should stop saying or writing it.

As part of a series called "My Big Break," All Things Considered is collecting stories of triumph, big and small. These are the moments when everything seems to click, and people leap forward into their careers.

What It Takes To Be A Champion

Jul 21, 2014

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

The Olympic motto is faster, higher, stronger. And year after year, athletes seem to live up to those words, but how?

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED BROADCAST)

DAVID EPSTEIN: We definitely are better. Although, it sort of depends how you look at the question because in some ways, we might not be as much better as we like to believe.

SIMON: David Epstein writes about sports science. He spoke to Guy Raz at the Ted Radio Hour.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED BROADCAST)

When America entered the Great War in 1917 — a war that began 100 years ago this summer — Major League Baseball faced a special problem: It had a hefty German heritage. Its best-known team, the New York Giants under John McGraw, was even sometimes called "McGraw's Prussians" for its tough, fighting spirit. Obviously, just as sauerkraut became "liberty cabbage," that had to go, too.

The world of e-sports was rattled this past week when an organization vying to become its governing body drew anger for organizing gender-divided tournaments.

Why is it that Europeans don't pay as much attention to time in sports as we do?

You American novices to soccer, who climbed on the World Cup bandwagon this summer –– you must have been completely baffled by how soccer has a thing called "stoppage time." That means that the game goes on after regulation time is up for an undisclosed period that only the referee knows.

The U.S. men's soccer team has finished second in its World Cup group, after a 1-0 loss to Germany on Thursday. The Americans will advance after Portugal beat Ghana 2-1.

"This is a huge, huge step, and now we can't wait until round of 16," U.S. coach Jurgen Klinsmann said afterward, according to ESPN. "Everyone said we had no chance. We took the chance and move on. And now we really want to prove a point."

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

I'm Audie Cornish, and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. Michel Martin is away. Now it's time for the weekly visit to the Barbershop, where the guys talk about what's in the news and what's on their minds. Sitting in the chairs for a shapeup this week are writer Jimi Izrael, with us from Cleveland. Hey there, Jimi.

JIMI IZRAEL: Hey A.C.. What took you so long, sister?

(LAUGHTER)

IZRAEL: I'm sorry, go ahead with your intro. Go with your intro, my bad. Go ahead.

In anticipation of the 100th anniversary of Babe Ruth’s first appearance in Major League Baseball, the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown opened a new exhibit this week, “Babe Ruth, His Life and Legend.” The Hall of Fame is also celebrating its 75th Anniversary. Bill Littlefield has more on the story...

The no-hitters just keep coming. That's the case for the Los Angeles Dodgers, as the team's pitchers have thrown two games without giving up a hit in less than a month. Clayton Kershaw used 15 strikeouts to complete the feat Wednesday, matching teammate Josh Beckett's May 25 effort.

Getting the no-hitter was "pretty cool," Kershaw said after throwing 107 pitches in the game.

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

And I'm Melissa Block. The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has canceled six trademark registrations held by the Washington Redskins. Today's ruling determined the football teams trademark name is disparaging to Native Americans and unfit for federal registration. But as Hansi Lo Wang of NPR's Code Switch team reports, the team still owns the Redskins name and can continue to use it.

Ethan Swan, who runs an art gallery in downtown Los Angeles, believes that "so much of art is about the creation of meaning through image." He also believes that "tattoos are a great way to mark pain."

So Swan is naturally interested in how body ink plays out for others. It's become what he admits is a quest.

As the founder of the blog NBA Tattoos, Swan tells NPR's Michel Martin that in 2010, he got a new cable package and started watching a lot of basketball.

You know, it is the 21st century, and it is possible to acknowledge that and make both the World Cup and the Olympics more affordable. The current waste and opulence simply aren't defensible anymore.

For the soccer pooh-bahs to demand that Brazil build new stadiums, costing billions of dollars, is unconscionable. How much more logical to utilize existing stadiums in neighboring countries, in large cities like Buenos Aires, Montevideo and Santiago.

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

Every World Cup, we ask the same question in our editorial meeting - has soccer finally turned the corner and become mainstream here in the U.S.? Well, if you go by the television ratings, the answer this year is a definite maybe. And for more on this, we turn to Brian Steinberg. He's the senior TV editor at Variety and he's been tracking the ratings. Welcome to the program once again.

BRIAN STEINBERG: Thank you very much.

SIEGEL: What numbers jump out at you in the first few days of the World Cup?

Hall of famer Tony Gwynn, who spent 20 years playing for the San Diego Padres, has died.

The team announced his death on Twitter, saying it was "terribly sad to say goodbye to our teammate, our friend and a legend."

Gwynn, known as "Mr. Padre," flirted with a .400 batting average in 1994. By the end of the season, his batting average was .394. Gwynn earned eight National League batting titles and had 3,141 career hits, as well as an impressive .338 batting average overall.

Pages