The tributes are pouring out for Muhammad Ali, who died last night at age 74. I recommend perusing the links in this tweet from The Ringer + the two links I tweeted in reply to that tweet + pretty much Dave Zirin's entire timeline, but especially his eulogy.
Naturally, one of my favorite stories I've seen in the past 24 hours came from Mike Royko, published March 7, 1971, in the Chicago Daily News. The column, "Barrow, Cream, Marchegiano, Smith, Who?" explored the long history of prizefighters changing their names, and the indifference and acceptance of sportswriters for each of them until one Cassius Clay changed his name to Muhammad Ali.
Royko's column ran the day before Ali's fight against Joe Frazier, his third fight following his three-year suspension from boxing for draft evasion. Ali was 29-0 and the undisputed heavyweight champion before he was stripped of his titles and suspended. In 1970, with Ali suspended, Joe Frazier won the vacant WBC belt.
When the two men fought, Frazier was 26-0 and Ali was 31-0...
In August of 2004, with RedEye still searching for its own identity, RedEye sports editor Chris Malcolm and a writer who shall remain nameless developed an idea for a column that would encapsulate the Chicago fan experience: caustic yet passionate, humorous yet desperate, hopeful yet exacerbated. The character was Bag Boy, and since 2004 this... Read more »
Since I’m running an interview tomorrow with the author of RedEye‘s Bag Boy column, I wanted to share some of his vintage columns. Enjoy! *** Make it same time, next year, please October 28, 2005 So that only took 88 years. And for those of you thinking that the bag is coming off now, think... Read more »
April 28, 2012, Saturday afternoon. The Bulls were polishing off the 8th seeded Philadelphia 76ers in a Game 1 playoff win when Derrick Rose knifed into the lane and blew out his knee. Watching at home with my computer up, I flipped up a blank Word Doc and banged out a column. I did one... Read more »
ReadJack’s 2013 guide to watching old Super Bowls on Youtube So you’re a Super Bowl junkie and don’t want to wait until 5:30 today to get your Big Game Fix? Or you’re just a severely depressed Bears fan still aching over our team’s absence in this year’s playoffs, and you want to pretend this year’s... Read more »
If you’re a Bears fan who reads the Chicago Tribune, you are probably familiar with the work of Vaughn McClure. I’ve read his work for a while, but getting an opportunity to actually watch him work has given me a newfound respect for his game and the craft of reporting. I reference two articles in this video, one... Read more »
Hey gang! As I said last week, Eye On Chi is all about my take on the Chicago journalism scene, but it's also my own experience navigating the Chicago journalism scene, and that's what today's post is about.
A People With Passion series Chicago journalism January 30, 2012: Jonathan Eig In this excerpt from the 25th installment of Jack M Silverstein’s Chicago journalism interview series, Jonathan Eig tells the story of the creation of his new Chicago sports site ChicagoSide, which debuts in full April 2, 2012. - - - I was sitting in a bar... Read more »
A People with Passion series Chicago journalism December 24, 2011: Sam Smith Here, in Part III of Jack M Silverstein’s three-part interview with Bulls writer Sam Smith, Sam discusses his departure from the Tribune, his arrival at Bulls.com, why his work at Bulls.com is “ the best journalism experience I’ve had ,” and why you... Read more »