Monday, June 28, 2010

Hoosiers of Baseball

This is a great article that appeared in Sports Illustrated last week. It's about some borderline hippie coach and his baseball team from the a tiny high school that took second in the open Illinois state tournament in 1971.

There's a lot in the article about the coach's style that I can identify with. He's kind of all about empowering the players, and I'm a big fan of that. I kind of look at it as being their team, and I'm just there to point them in the right direction. This may be because the majority of my sports experience growing up was playing pick-up games with no adult supervision. So, I don't really have a traditional, autocratic, disciplinarian coach in my background to model my style after. Also, did I mention he was an English teacher.

Anyhow, I had great fun reading aforementioned article. One of my favorites I've come across in the last few years.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Wimbledon: Longest Match follow-up

This one is for anyone that has ever been dog tired. Dude played an 11-hour match with a 138-game fifth set over the past two days and then got creamed in his second-round match today.

Some of my favorite lines from the AP story:

"Isner had no aces after hitting a record 112 [in the marathon match] against Mahut. 'I've never been this exhausted before," Isner said. "Mentally and physically, I was obviously a bit drained. I just didn't have much in the way of my legs. I was just low on fuel out there. Didn't really have a chance.'

"Isner received a standing ovation when he walked onto court. He immediately lost his serve -- something that didn't happen once in his 70-68 fifth set against Mahut. 'The turnaround time -- he just didn't have enough time to get his body right,' said Isner's coach, Craig Boynton. 'He's one tired boy.'

"Isner didn't warm up before taking the court and showed up unshaven. 'It was brutal,' Isner said. 'Things were looking pretty bleak right from the get-go.'

All in good fun, of course...