How Nolan Nawrocki Made Himself Into The NFL's Most Infamous Scout

Nolan Nawrocki lives in the nicest house in a tidy neighborhood in Elmhurst, Ill., a western suburb of Chicago. When I visit him a couple of weeks before Easter, the windows are already awash in signage. » 4/15/14 1:26pm Tuesday 1:26pm

The Coach Who Doesn't Care: How One Man Turns Skaters Into Champions

Gracie Gold was having a bad night. The 18-year-old figure skater was about a minute and a half into her free skate at the U.S. International Classic in September when she singled a double axel. It was a significant mistake—a loss of a couple of points—but for a disciplined skater, that kind of error shouldn't have… » 2/19/14 12:23pm 2/19/14 12:23pm

The Big Book Of Black Quarterbacks

On Sunday, the Seattle Seahawks walked all over the Denver Broncos, 43-8, to win Super Bowl XLVIII. Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson passed for 206 yards, ran for 26 more, threw two touchdowns, and made National Football League history. He became the second African-American quarterback ever to start and win a Super… » 2/06/14 5:20pm 2/06/14 5:20pm

How Greg Jackson Is Changing The Parameters Of Coaching

Last year, we spent a week with Greg Jackson, a top fight trainer, as he and his team prepared four athletes to compete in the Ultimate Fighting Championship. We were granted unusual behind-the-scenes access so that we could answer a fairly straightforward question: Just what does a great coach do, and why does it… » 1/24/14 1:21pm 1/24/14 1:21pm

Did Football Cause 20 Deaths In 1905? Re-Investigating A Serial Killer

On the last day of the 1905 college football season, Harvard hosted Yale in the 26th meeting between the two teams. At one point in the typically low-scoring affair, Harvard's Francis Burr trotted back to return a punt. As the ball fluttered through the air, Burr called for a fair catch. Then things got ugly, as things … » 1/22/14 3:45pm 1/22/14 3:45pm

How Will Muschamp And Florida Sold Their Disastrous Season

I wasn't yet in Gainesville for the first press conference, held immediately after the season opener. Will Muschamp's Florida Gators had just demolished Toledo in a tune-up, an easy victory foreseen by just about everybody. The Gators had gone 11-1 the previous regular season, and only BCS politics kept them out of the … » 1/06/14 5:04pm 1/06/14 5:04pm

I Was An NFL Player Until I Was Fired By Two Cowards And A Bigot

Hello. My name is Chris Kluwe, and for eight years I was the punter for the Minnesota Vikings. In May 2013, the Vikings released me from the team. At the time, quite a few people asked me if I thought it was because of my recent activism for same-sex marriage rights, and I was very careful in how I answered the… » 1/02/14 12:52pm 1/02/14 12:52pm

GSP Is Being Honest; It's The Best Thing That Could Happen To Fighting

So UFC welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre is disappearing from the fight game for an indefinite and unspecified period of time, relinquishing his title and taking time to rest from a career that's seen him spend more time fighting in the UFC than anyone else ever has. Whether or not he ever returns, this clearly… » 12/13/13 4:08pm 12/13/13 4:08pm

Can Dirtbags, Pretty Ladies, And Twitter Save Horse Racing?

If you're like the average American, your experience of major horse races centers on one: the Kentucky Derby. Perhaps you know a bit more about the sport and follow the Preakness and the Belmont as well, putting a bit of money down in the same spirit in which you'd pick a bracket and talking up Triple Crown winners… » 11/01/13 3:25pm 11/01/13 3:25pm

The Man Who Doesn't Exist: How Canelo Álvarez Became A Myth

Juanacatlán, Jalisco, sits on the slopes of lush foothills, 20 miles southeast of Guadalajara. To reach the town from the highway, you have to pass through its industrial neighbor El Salto, then cross the Río Grande de Santiago, one of Mexico's most polluted rivers, on a two-lane bridge adorned with a large overhead sign … » 9/11/13 12:05pm 9/11/13 12:05pm

How An ESPNer Found Out The "Battle Of The Sexes" Was Probably Fixed

As usual, this one started with a tip. It came courtesy of Hal Shaw, a 79-year-old man who lived in Florida. ESPN investigative reporter Don Van Natta Jr. knew him. The two had met when Van Natta was researching his 2011 biography of Babe Didrikson Zaharia. Shaw once worked at the country club that she owned, so Van… » 8/29/13 2:42pm 8/29/13 2:42pm