Sports Biblio

The Imagination Of Sports In Books, History And Culture

Month: November 2017

Another Contentious Twist for the Baseball Hall of Fame: Sports Biblio Digest 11.26.17

This week was supposed to be an uneventful one on the Baseball Hall of Fame front, with the release of 2018 ballots that include Chipper Jones and Jim Thome, who could very well be first-ballot inductees next summer.

Cooperstown Casebook, Baseball Hall of FameBut increasing support for Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens in 2017 balloting by members of the Baseball Writers Association of America has triggered a whole new round of steroids hand-wringing that figures to hang over sportswriting voters this winter.

Hall of Famer Joe Morgan sent a letter to them, pleading that no steroids-users should get in. Except that it’s too late for that, and to suggest, as he has, that he’s speaking only for himself, isn’t gaining much credence.

Continue reading

The National Hockey League At 100: Sports Biblio Digest 11.19.17

The National Hockey League is a league and hockey is a sport I have repeatedly tried to like more than I do.

The First Season, National Hockey League While I don’t dislike them, passionate embrace has been a bit more problematic, having quite a lot to do with my hometown of Atlanta twice losing NHL franchises to Canada, the birthplace and spiritual home of the sport.

Above the border has been the place to be this week, as the NHL celebrated the centenary of its inaugural game in a gala event in Toronto, and on Saturday, in Montreal in a regular season game between the Maple Leafs and Canadiens. Continue reading

A Centenary of Olympic Films: The Sports Biblio Digest 11.12.17

The first Olympic film I ever saw was the most notorious one of all, in a college history class.

Olympia, Leni Riefenstahl, Olympic filmsThe professor was more than just a film buff with a Ph.D.; he was a dead ringer for Douglas Fairbanks (and Junior), all the way down to his stylish brim and pencil-thin mustache.

He also possessed a healthy desire to shake students out of their polite and unconflicted youthful stupor, and relished the contentious conversation that ensued after screenings of “Birth of a Nation” and “Triumph of the Will.” Continue reading

Monday Night Football At A Crossroads: Sports Biblio Digest 11.5.17

Does “Monday Night Football” matter any more?

Kicking Off the Week, Monday Night FootballYes, it’s still an exclusive-window game held the day after the usual Sunday NFL regimen, and it counts in the standings just the same.

Since its experimental beginnings in the late 1960s—just as the age of the Super Bowl was beginning—then-commissioner Pete Rozelle’s idea to build a highly-rated “event” around a single game in prime-time weeknight hours helped solidify the professional game atop the American spectator sports heap. Continue reading

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