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The SportsThink Weekly Review #83
March 3, 2023
Welcome new readers! The SportsThink Weekly Review highlights my favorite sport-related reading of the week. Most articles are recently published, but some are not; the only rule is that I’ve read them within the past week. Some are relevant to my day job as a professor teaching courses on the business, history, and philosophy of sports. Others are just plain interesting, relevant to my life-long obsession with the games we play. I also occasionally share articles and assorted musings on Twitter. The newsletter is free, but comes with two requests. 1. I’m always open to suggestions, so send me the good stuff that you read! 2. If you enjoy the newsletter, please share it with other folks who might enjoy it as well. Finally, I try to focus on non-paywalled writing, but if you find yourself unable to access anything, just hit reply to the email and I’ll do my best to get you a copy. Thanks for reading!
Greetings from Columbus, Ohio! I’m here for the Arnold Sports Festival, a truly physical extravaganza if there ever was one: 12,000 athletes, more than 50 competitions…and this is now a smaller event than it was some years ago. Given the imprimatur of Arnold Schwarzenegger, there’s a lot of focus on strength sports and various flavors of bodybuilding, but also martial arts, baton twirling, and medieval fighting, to name but a few. I’ve been following the event since high school, but it’s my first time here and I must say that the vibe is awesome, an all out fiesta of human potential.
I’m here as a fan and also in an official capacity with the team running the Arnold Strongman and Strongwoman Classic events, so I’ll gently nudge you to check out the livestream below, which will run all day Friday and Saturday. Seriously, spare a few minutes, these athletes and events are awesome.
A few things to read, a bit of a different spread this week…
Topical!! I’m not sure if this is the best article ever on the sport of strongman, but it’s definitely my favorite. If you’re looking to wrap your head around the notion of folks getting as strong as humanly possible, this is a great one.
The magic of the internet. I wasn’t previously familiar with the author or the subject, but I enjoyed this. Barnes was a college basketball standout who was just not good enough for the NBA, but went on to have a solid European career and continues to good things in sport. Worth a read for a glimpse at a life of an athlete who’s stratospherically better than any of us, but still doesn’t crack that tiniest of upper echelons. As a bonus for a couple of my readership micro-demographics, there’s commentary on smoking in Turkey and a passing reference to Mira Costa High School.
I think this is a first for the newsletter, as I gather this is from the blog of a big time investment outfit. But it’s an interesting and short piece on the nature of sports franchises as assets, which is essentially that they are somehow great and lousy investments all at once. Keep that in mind the next time you’re shopping for pro sports teams.
I’m still a ways from donning a helmet on my couch, but this is cool.
As always, thanks for reading. Please send me your good reads and share the newsletter with folks who might enjoy it.
See you next week,