Your p.m. roundup for Nov. 2, the day most of those "sexy" studies turned out to be frauds. Photo of Pujols dedicating Pujols statue via Big League Stew. H/T to Mike T, who also suggested the perfect headline. Got any stories or photos for us? Tip your editors.
What we're watching (all times EDT, unless noted): Versus has Sabres-Flyers in an NHL game that began at 7. Fox Sports Net has Otelul-Manchester United soccer on tape-delay at 8. ESPN has Temple-Ohio in college football at 8. ESPNU has Iowa State-Oklahoma in college women's volleyball at 8. And ESPN2 has Salt Lake-Seattle in the MLS playoffs at 10.
What's to come for the NCAA: "The owners didn't listen. Veeck was not one of them. He had a predilection for putting midgets on the field. And black people. And, as far as the authoritarian exercise of whiteness went, baseball management made the Politburo look like the O'Jays. They ignored Veeck. They even beat the Flood case in the Supreme Court. Then, in 1975, an arbitrator named Peter Seitz threw out the reserve clause and free agency fell onto baseball all at once and everywhere. The system utterly collapsed and, just as Veeck had predicted, it was not a soft landing. Something like that has happened over the last 20 or 30 years in regard to college athletics. Every few years, some angry, stick-waving prophet would come wandering into the cozy system of unpaid (or barely paid) labor and start bellowing about how the essential corruption in the system wasn't that some players got money under the table, but that none of them were allowed to get any over it. Sooner or later, these people said, the system would collapse from its own internal contradictions—yes, some of these people summoned up enough Marx through the bong resin in their brains from their college days to make a point—and the people running college sports had best figure out how to control the chaos before it overwhelmed them. Nobody listened. Very little changed, except that college sports became bigger and more lucrative, an enterprise of sports spectacle balanced precariously on the fragile principle that everybody should get to make money except the people doing the actual work." [Grantland]
Nov. 2, 2008: ESPN Jerks Bill Simmons Around, Yet Again
Slate's Stefan Fatsis is interviewed by Matt Chaney about HGH & the NFL: "Well, suspicion begins on the real problem for HGH blood testing as it stands today: The fact that American medicine and credible medical bodies abroad have yet to see a democratic, scientific, straight-up independent peer review of this purported breakthrough in doping detection-a WADA scientist's patented immunoassay for GH-isoform ratios in human blood-or this potential goldmine "test" that generates from closed European research and secretive WADA engineers who remain virtually inaccessible." [Chaney's Blog]
What killed Bubba Smith: "Autopsy results showed the 6-foot-7 Smith had high levels of the weight-loss drug phentermine in his system, coroner's spokesman Ed Winter said in a news release. He also had heart disease, an enlarged heart and up to 75 percent blockage of some blood vessels." [ESPN]
Your Russian Beer Commercial Interlude:
Theo's first move: "Mike Quade is out as Chicago Cubs manager with one year remaining on his two-year deal, and Ryne Sandberg won't be considered as his replacement. Cubs president of baseball operations Theo Epstein flew to Florida on Wednesday to personally give Quade the news." [Chicago Tribune]
Merch: Managing editor Tom Scocca and contributing editor Drew Magary have both written books. You can buy Scocca's Beijing Welcomes You: Unveiling the Capital City of the Future here, and Magary's The Postmortal here. Now do it.
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