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ESPN The Magazine 09.15.14

ESPN The Magazine is for the NEXT generation of sports fans who want to stay on top of the athletes, teams, topics and upcoming events in their own sports world. The Magazine celebrates not only sports, but the cultures and lifestyles that are an integral part of them - all with ESPN's unique personality and authority.

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access_time3 min.
everything to lose

Last summer, I wrote a column arguing that renaming the Redskins wouldn’t hurt Washington’s NFL team (“What’s in a Name,” Aug. 19, 2013). That triggered a barrage of negative responses from readers, who accused me of everything from not being able to read a dictionary to political correctness to bad math. And upon further review, I have to admit, I was wrong: The statistical and financial case for getting rid of the name Redskins is even stronger than I’d realized. First, a recap: No college team has lost money in the long run by moving away from derogatory Native American mascots. Further, NFL teams risk less than college programs when altering their identities because pro football franchises generate so much money from so many sources beyond their logos. When the estate…

access_time4 min.
monopoly man

Baseball card collecting, like baseball itself, is a world governed by tidy metrics—achievement, timing, scarcity. But every now and then, an aberration throws things into disarray. Rich Klein stumbled across one such glitch a few years ago when he heard a rumor about a card that was confounding hobbyists. Klein, a mortgage servicer who moonlights as a collector, looked up the card—the 1964 Topps Curt Flood, a middling, widely produced issue—and saw that it was inexplicably overpriced. “I did a little research and thought, ‘This is fascinating,’” he says. A low-quality copy of the ’64 Flood goes for about $30—more than five times what it should, Klein estimates. A pristine copy costs upward of $1,000. Such prices defy logic; while the Cardinals’ center fielder was an exceptional ballplayer—Flood won the Gold…

access_time1 min.

WHO Heisman Trophy winners (from near right) Tony Dorsett, Ricky Williams, Billy Sims, George Rogers, Marcus Allen, Charles Woodson, Johnny Manziel and Robert Griffin III WHAT Filming this year’s spots for Nissan’s Heisman House series WHEN July 1, 3:31 p.m. PT WHERE Pasadena, California If the Heisman House—the ritzy SoCal manse that once again serves as HQ for the fourth season of the popular campaign—looks more like a frat house, that’s because it kind of is. One of this year’s pledges? Newbie Johnny Football. “I was a little worried about Manziel,” admits director Erich Joiner, “but he really worked hard on his acting.” Meanwhile, Rogers honed his eating. The script for this “Flutie Flakes” sketch called for the cast to spit out the 16-year-old cereal (stunt double: Frosted Flakes), but the former Gamecock just kept munching. And munching.…

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WHO Scooter Gennett, Brewers second baseman WHAT Throwing pottery WHEN Aug. 6, 11:55 a.m. CT WHERE Creative Fire art and pottery studio, Wauwatosa, Wisconsin “It’s not your typical hobby, but it’s relaxing. Pottery takes my mind off of things, and it’s nice to forget about the day. I don’t really have a whole lot of time to make ceramics during the season, but I have some experience: I spent three years in high school taking pottery classes. I even go back during the offseason and visit my old teacher. I’ve made all kinds of mugs, bowls, plates, centerpieces and vases. My mom has a lot of my work in her house. One day I hope to have my own wheel and kiln. Not a lot of my teammates know I do this, but my pottery would make for…

access_time1 min.

Welcome to Sand Master Park, the world’s first sandboarding park and home to high-and-dry regulars like Jackson Cruz. “I got pretty good pretty fast,” says the 20-year-old pro, who grew up an hour away from these dunes in Florence, Oregon. “The hook for me was the speed and how smooth it feels.” Popular in desert areas worldwide, sandboarding picked up speed in California in the 1990s, but its community remains tight. In July, Dune Riders International, the sport’s global governing body, held its 18th annual Sand Master Jam in Florence, drawing just 25 pros and amateurs. Cruz finished in a third-place tie. Judging from his high-soaring antics, we’re guessing the competition was no picnic. 31 Speed, in mph, the top sandboarders reached in a downhill, drag-race-style run at the Sand Master…

access_time6 min.
second and goals to go

We hold this college football truth to be self-evident, that not all weeks are created equal. But don't assume the sheen of Week 1 gives way to some noncon, cupcake encore; Week 2 is when the fun really begins. An early but conference-defining contest? USC-Stanford has you covered. A potential College Football Playoff ticket puncher? Michigan State-Oregon has Arlington written all over it. The final act of a historic rivalry? Notre Dame-Michigan plays its swan song. A tone setter for two teams in search of an identity? Virginia Tech and Ohio State square off to prove that roster holes-on the Hokies' front seven and in the Bucks' backfield-won't derail their plans. So with an assist from ESPN Stats & Information and ESPN Insider Brian Fremeau, we lay out what each…