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sports history

FEATURED BOOK
April 30th, 2016

Tennis In Bullrings And On Ice: Rod Laver On The Pro Circuit’s Early Days

Until the advent of the Open Era in 1968, professional tennis players were excluded from the sport’s top tournaments. So instead of competing at Wimbledon or the US Open, tennis pros toured the world, often playing in unusual — and unfavorable — conditions. Tennis Hall of Famer Rod Laver joins Bill Littlefield to talk about his experiences.

FEATURE
March 12th, 2016

International Chess, A Family Pub And The History Of Brackets

While college basketball fans prepare to fill out their March Madness brackets, Bill Littlefield plots the little-known history of the bracket from an 1851 chess tournament to a Long Island restaurant in the 1970s.

FEATURE
March 5th, 2016

Hoover-Ball: A President’s Game Becomes A CrossFit Sensation

Public perception of Herbert Hoover has, for the most part, always been tied to the economic troubles of the Great Depression. But the legacy of the 31st president isn’t all bad…in fact, as a sport, it’s pretty intense — and CrossFit approved. Only A Game’s Karen Given has the story.

In-Depth
February 27th, 2016

‘Casey At The Bat’ — Revisiting The Mudville Nine And DeWolf Hopper

If you say “poetry” and “baseball” to lots of people, they will think of Ernest Thayer’s doggerel “Casey at the Bat.” As players gather at spring training, Bill Littlefield takes the opportunity to embark on a literary examination of the historic poem.

FEATURE
February 20th, 2016

Nazis Pioneered Broadcasting… And Made Jesse Owens A Star

The Nazis pioneered modern, global sports broadcasting for the 1936 Olympic Games in Berlin. They just didn’t know Jesse Owens was going to steal the show. Only A Game’s Karen Given finds out more about the Nazis’ role in broadcasting history.

FEATURE
February 20th, 2016

Kenny Sailors: The Long-Forgotten Inventor Of Basketball’s Jump Shot

Today, the jump shot is one of basketball’s fundamental moves. But it didn’t exist in the early days of basketball history. Where did it come from? And who invented it? Only A Game’s Karen Given’s investigation begins 84 years ago on a farm in Wyoming.

FEATURE
February 13th, 2016

King Henry VIII Might Have Had CTE

King Henry VIII is remembered for marrying six women…and beheading two of them. But what if Henry VIII was more than just a bad husband? What if some of his erratic behavior can be traced back to a jousting match and the same degenerative brain condition that now affects former athletes?

FEATURE
January 9th, 2016

Kurt Searvogel Cycles 75,065 Miles In A Year…And Keeps Going

You might think that the Tour de France is cycling’s most grueling feat. Last year’s course included 21 stages over 23 days, covering just over 2,000 miles. But Only A Game’s Karen Given has the story of a cycling challenge that might make you reconsider.

FEATURED BOOK
January 9th, 2016

50 Years Of ‘Super Bowl Gold’ With Peter King

Super Bowl 50 is a little less than a month away. Sports Illustrated’s Peter King, who wrote the foreword for “Super Bowl Gold,” shares some of his favorite Super Bowl stories — including his plane ride with Joe DiMaggio — and explains The Fall Of The Roman Numeral.

FEATURE
January 9th, 2016

The Glasnost Bowl And The Strange History Of American Football In Russia

In 1989, the USC and Illinois football teams were supposed to play a game in Moscow. Bill Littlefield discovers why the ‘Glasnost Bowl,’ as it was to be called, was cancelled — and learns how a group of high school seniors from Oklahoma eventually brought American football to the USSR.

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