I consume a lot of sports content and during this pandemic lockdown, even more so. It’s mostly podcasts, videos, and blogs that many of you probably already consume as well. These are some of the takeaways I’ve gotten this past week of random consumption with links. Please leave your thoughts if you think any of this makes sense at all or any other gems you’ve picked up this week.
Embarrassed As a White Person
I have been a fan of Bill Simmons’ work since his Page 2 days. Besides Nike ads, NBA SuperStars VHS tapes, and sappy Sports Center Sports Century highlight montages, his work and 30 for 30s are some of the foundation of my sports storytelling fandom. I am unabashedly brainwashed by this format.
‘Flying Coach’ is a new series in The Ringer network hosted by Steve Kerr, who by now everyone knows from the Last Dance and leading the Golden State Warriors dynasty. His co-host is legendary NFL and college football coach, Pete Carrol, who’s won championships in both. In this episode they are joined by Spurs coach Greg Popovich who carries a mystique and legend all his own.
Without getting too much into it, they address the issue of systemic racism in the United States. The quality behind this conversation comes from their earnest take as ‘old white guys’ and their responsibility on this issue. They discuss their roles as coaches with large platforms, the communities impacted by systemic racism and the direct actions currently taken by their players in protest. They highlight the importance of education as well as leaning on the current generation who are much more exposed and informed than the previous generation before. Specifics they touch upon, for example, the Tulsa Wall Street Massacre which I only learned of last week myself.
The much lighter discussion of sports comes towards the end when each shared the moment they became aware of the key to success in coaching: culture. It was eye opening to listen to each hall of fame coach talk about how they discovered themselves, the message they were meant to convey and how doing so changed their approach to coaching forever. Highly recommend this episode for those looking to hear solid constructive discussion on the current protests as well as hearing legends talk about coaching in long form.
To be fair this came from doing some research for a Huddle we put out late last week. The topic was a good one though as a sports fan starving for games to be back on. For hardcore fans most of this is not news but there are bits and pieces that may have slipped by you.
Like did you know that the Bundesliga broadcast is produced to include fan and stadium noises edited from previous matchups between the teams? Because no fans are allowed in the arena currently, this was a strategy devised by Sky Deutschland. So during a free kick in the live broadcast they would play the cheers and boos of the stadium from a previous game in the same scenario. Wild. Check out the short piece we did on this. Stay tuned also for a follow up on crazy tech stadiums are using around the world for the new normal – like remote fan app so you can cheer from home? #shamelessplugalert
Since the lockdown started seemingly 5 years ago, I, like many other weekend warriors, was forced to change up how I kept active. Playing basketball and going to the gym used to exclusively be my workouts for the last 20 years of my life. With this new normal I was forced to look into other ways to keep fit and from going insane. As a result I did the impossible – I started running. I say impossible because I have bad knees, tendinitis, bone spurs and overall I am probably less fit than I should be at my age.
It has been a pleasantly enjoyable new hobby (a story for a different time) that also lead me to consume new content – primarily going down the rabbit hole of YouTube videos from literally learning how to run to hours long podcast discussions with Ultra Marathoners running over 200 miles in just 2 days.
Running 101 starts with posture and position. Again as a newbie, there are tons of things to figure out and understanding how running tall affects the run was great beginner tip for me. This video also helped me get that posture and how to tip the hips forward to begin forward momentum. Awesome stuff to reprogram my chain fo movement.
If you’re just getting into running like me and love inspo check out this documentary on Coutney Dauwalter, the beer drinking fun loving winner of the first MOAB 240 Ultra beating out the 2nd place by more than 10 hours. She’s truly an inspiration and has never made the pain cave look so fun.
That’s all for this week! Let me know what you guys are watching & listening to in the world of sports.