Another Angle — From mascot to pastor

In a moment of defeat, Bucky Badger put his hands on his knees and started dry heaving.

It was New Years Day, 2006. Troy Maragos, brother of current Seattle Seahawks safety Chris Maragos, woke up that morning more excited than ever to start a new year. That’s because Maragos was Bucky Badger, one of the most iconic mascots in the Big Ten and all of college football… Continue reading

Another Angle — The mystery of fantasy

I was walking around my apartment on deadline the other night thinking about this column—thinking about what the Hektor of Troy I was going to write about. I knew it was going in our fantasy football issue, but I’m not a fantasy football guy. I’m just not. I want to be. I want to be like my colleague, Sports Yapp podcast host Bryce Johnson, who has a ring sitting on his desk with “Bryce” carved into the band for his 2010 Fantasy Football Championship. (Trust me, I know it’s there; he’s showed it to me seven times…) Continue reading

Another Angle — Professor’s perspective

Paul Felix sees a different side of things.

His daughter Allyson Felix, for example, won three track and field gold medals at the London 2012 Olympic games, the most any female track athlete has earned since 1988. But her most impressive feat, he believes, wasn’t her 200-meter victory, a race where she had disappointedly taken silver four years before in Beijing and eight years before in Athens…or her 4×100-meter relay gold…or her 4×400-meter relay gold… Continue reading

Another Angle — Major champions come through me

Golfers are superstitious.

I know that firsthand. My senior year of college golf, I would always, always shower before my round, eat two doughnuts and a banana on the way to the course, and listen to Coldplay in the van…that is, until I played poorly. Then I’d start a different routine.

But I didn’t know golfers were this superstitious… Continue reading

Another Angle — The God excuse

Some guy the other day looked at me and said, “Just pray about it.” I felt like he was telling me to shut up—like he was tired of listening to me or something. I was mad. Praying made me angry.

In high school, I remember my dad telling me to apply to colleges. I told him God would lead me to the right one. I felt holy—like I was seeking “God’s direction” (isn’t that what they say in church?). So I picked up my PlayStation controller and built the most legendary dynasty the world had ever seen on Madden 2004. I think that made my dad angry… Continue reading

Another Angle — God is like water

Ben Crane stood over his ball, stopped, and looked over at me through his sunglasses.

“Dude, I just thought of a great idea for the article,” he said, in the middle of stroking putts during his practice round on Tuesday.

“What is it?” I asked, standing behind the ropes and chuckling at the irony of it all. Here was a PGA Tour player practicing for what he would later tell me is one of his favorite tournaments of the year—the Wells Fargo Championship—and he’s standing over a putt thinking about a feature story for Sports Spectrum magazine.

“I’ll tell you on the next tee,” he said, looking back down at his putt… Continue reading

Another Angle: Joy like Bubba

Wanna know what I’m sick of? Joyless Christians. Christians should be funny. Christians should be enjoyable to be around. Christians should be the life of the party (yes, party, didn’t David dance before the Lord with all his might?) because they have something no one else has: unexplainable joy that’s only found in Christ. That’s why I love Bubba Watson. Yes, he’s a Christian. And yes, he lives a life with moral boundaries. But he also lives a joyful life, a funny life, a stupid life, a life replete with ridiculous stunts, hilarious videos and laughter.

Back in the fall, Watson was gracious enough to give me 35 minutes of his time for a phone interview, and this concept—the epidemic that Christians are plagued with boredom and lifelessness—is exactly what we talked about… Continue reading

Another Angle: Fame and façades

This world is a paradox. The 10 days I spent in Indianapolis were a dream. As a young journalist who has never covered the events leading up to a Super Bowl—or anything big, for that matter—it was the coolest experience of my short journalism career.

At first, it was surreal. New England owner Bob Kraft next to you on the escalator. ESPN personality Chris Berman interviewing the same guy you are. Pro Football Hall of Famer Michael Irvin spotting your pink and cream argyle sweater through his shades, pointing, and saying, “Nice look, bro.” (Dead serious. It happened.)… Continue reading

Another Angle: Super Bowl Media Day in more than 140 characters

On January 31, I attended my first Super Bowl Media Day—quite possibly one of my most memorable experiences in my short journalism career. I tweeted a lot that day—mostly about serious and spiritual things for our subscribers—but there were also a number of tidbits that didn’t make the, uh, dreaded 140-character Twitter limit. I apologize ahead of time for this brief glimpse into my dysfunctional brain…

3:21 a.m. – Wake up ready to go, then realize it’s not even 4 a.m.

Somewhere between 3:22 a.m. and 7 a.m. – Have a dream about purposely tripping Tom Brady at Media Day and justifying my act of violence by saying it’s work related. Seriously.

7 a.m. – Wake up and realize that’s the best dream I’d had in a long, long, time…
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