How the NBA Ruins Our Pick-Up Games

In which I get a little ranty about basketball. ———– Over at Slate, Matt Yglesias has a column about why everybody ignores the Spurs.: America—at least in its own imagination—stands for certain things. For the idea that hard work and sound judgment bring success, and that success deserves celebration. That winners should be celebrated as […]

For Extra Credit, Estimate Your Chances of Winning: Ballparking Giveaway

Some time back, I reviewed a cool book about Fermi problems by Aaron Santos, then a post-doc at Michigan. In the interim, he’s taken a faculty job at Oberlin, written a second book on sports-related Fermi problems, and started a blog, none of which I had noticed until he emailed me. Shame on me. Anyway, […]

The Physics of Sprints and Kickoff Safety

Over at Grantland, Bill Barnwell offers some unorthodox suggestions for replacing the kickoff in NFL games, which has apparently been floated as a way to improve player safety. Appropriately enough, the suggestion apparently came from Giants owner John Mara, which makes perfect sense giving that the Giants haven’t had a decent kick returner since Dave […]

Union College in the “Frozen Four”

While none of the college basketball teams I root for made the Final Four in their respective tournaments, I probably really ought to note that there is a team that might loosely be termed “mine” that’s playing in the national semifinal. Then again, since they’ve gotten this far without me saying anything about them at […]

Impostors, Underdogs, and the Status of Science

Over in Scientopia, SciCurious has a nice post about suffering from Impostor Syndrome, the feeling that everyone else is smarter than you are, and you will soon be exposed as a total fraud. Which is nonsense, of course, but something that almost every scientist suffers at some point. The post ends on a more upbeat […]

On Basketball

While in the past, I’ve written a bunch about basketball here, I’ve been unusually silent on the subject this year, confining my commentary to the occasional Links Dump item from Grantland and other sites. This isn’t because the past season was not noteworthy– indeed, it was a rather eventful year for Syracuse basketball, with the […]

Wacky Football Mishap Poll

So, my Giants edged out Kate’s Patriots again in the Chateau Steelypips Bowl, in a game that was certainly not without its drama. I’m not going to gloat about it, because a couple of different bounces here or there easily could’ve changed the outcome. Also, I didn’t see the third quarter at all, really, because […]