Weekly Recap — #Sportsbiz, Superfights, and super fast citizens


Sorry I’m a day late on this. Started to write this post Sunday morning but got off on a tangent about SAE bros, n-bombs and whether hip-hop makes white people say racist things. Anyway, folks keep telling me they’re working to keep track of everything I publish. It doesn’t always come up in their Facebook … Continue reading

Manny Pacquiao is Awesome at Basketball…


The awesomest. To say otherwise is to admit you don’t value your career as a pro basketball player. And if you don’t believe me, ask Daniel Orton. He’s a former University of Kentucky Wildcat and Orlando Magic first round draft pick who is currently a member of the Purefoods Hotshots looking for work after being … Continue reading

Oh, Canada: Slippery Slope to the Sports Moral High Ground


I spent part of Tuesday afternoon chatting with Toronto Star colleague Cathal Kelly about a column he was writing examining commercialized NCAA athletics, and the way those sports prod fans, administrators and regular folks into irrational decisions. Like kicking paying customers off a Delta Airlines flight so the University of Florida men’s basketball team could … Continue reading

Aquille Carr, Overseas Pros and Major League Basketball


If you’re surprised Aquille Carr is skipping college to play pro basketball overseas, you shouldn’t be. Reports that an Italian club had offered him $750,000 first surfaced in 2011, not long after the 5-foot-6 dynamo used a dazzling array of crossovers, stutter-steps, blind passes and dunks (yes, dunks!) to become a viral video sensation and … Continue reading

NCAA, Pay-for-play and the search for sympathetic victims


Monday night the Kentucky Wildcats men’s basketball team vanquished the Kansas Jayhawks to win their first national championship in 14 years and tie together several compelling subplots. There’s the one about high-profile coach John Calipari delivering an NCAA crown to long-suffering fans who expect Sweet 16 appearances like the rest of us expect taxes. And … Continue reading

Buzz Bissinger, the NBA and False Friends


When I enrolled in Spanish class two years ago my instructor warned me about “false friends” — words that sound familiar to English speakers but actually mean something different and potentially embarrassing en Español. Exitado was one of them. An anglo looks at that word and thinks it means “excited,” but in many parts of Mexico, … Continue reading

October 2006 — Miracle Man on the Mend


In the aftermath of the shooting at Dueuesne University, Toronto’s Sam Ashaolu faces an uncertain future, but he’s facing it with family love and support, writes Morgan Campbell. 14 October 2006 – Toronto Star PITTSBURGH – On a recent trip home to Toronto, John Ashaolu downloaded 36 Jay-Z tracks to his iPod. He knew how much … Continue reading

April 2006: Reaching Out to the Unreachable


29 April 2006 – Toronto Star By Morgan Campbell SIMCOE, ONT. – Rayshawn’s flashing those fast hands again, poking the ball from his buddy Kareem at the top of the key, then exploding toward the other hoop. Before he came to the Sprucedale Youth Centre, the only thing quicker than Rayshawn’s hands was his temper. Anyone … Continue reading

Long Shots Chapter I: The Holy Wars


Tensions rise between the teams and the teammates as the Jean Vanier Mavericks take on the Saints and Mother Teresa Scarborough high school players embark on long, difficult journey to an Ontario championship, writes Morgan Campbell. 31 May 2003 – Toronto Star The Jean Vanier Mavericks are one of the best high school basketball teams in … Continue reading

Long Shots Chapter II: On a Cold Night…


1 June 2003 – Toronto Star By Morgan Campbell JANUARY 10 The change room door swings open and in walks Oliver Prince to announce an important bit of news. He has the skinny on tonight’s opponent, the North Albion Cougars. “They’re suss,” the 6-foot-5, 215-pound star basketball player tells his team. “Kamar Burke is gonna … Continue reading

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