Didn’t have a chance to read and watch all of the great content on SI.com this week? Inside SI has you covered. Here’s a selection of some of the top Sports Illustrated stories and video productions from the past week.
SI released its 10th annual Fortunate 50, which ranks the 50 highest-earning professional athletes in the U.S.
Richard Deitsch reports on Dr. Jack Ramsey retiring as a broadcaster and asks if TV is ready for an openly gay analyst in his Media Circus column.
Nick Zaccardi introduces readers to the ‘Rumble on the Rails,’ a unique wrestling spectacle that took place in New York City this past week.
Chris Ballard writes that the Spurs are moving on because they were able to slow down Steph Curry.
Rob Mahoney examines the state of the Heat after two dominant series wins.
Ben Golliver says the Grizz have Zack Randolph to thank for earning their first trip to the Western Conference finals.
Ian Thomsen says the NBA set a new precedent by keeping the Kings in Sacramento.
Stu Hackel discusses second round storylines and questions for all eight teams.
Sara Kwak says goaltending remains a concern for the Penguins.
Alan Muir thinks the Blue Jackets’ Bobrovsky is deserving of the Hart Trophy.
Tom Verducci says after 766 tries, the Mets have a homegrown ace in Mat Harvey.
Jay Jaffe says Vernon Wells is proving to be a huge help for Yankees. Jaffe also provies the bests, worsts and more from the 2013 season so far.
Cliff Corcoran remembers some of the season’s most memorable moments so far.
Matt Harvey of the New York Mets breaks down his motion, and explains the key to his early success (video).
Ted Keith and Stephen Cannella take a look at the Yankees as their aging All-Stars begin to come off the DL and say if Mariano Rivera should start the 2013 All-Star game (video).
The Cardinals are the new No. 1 team in Joe Lemire’s weekly power rankings.
As the losses pile up, the Astros try to remain positive writes Michael Rosenberg.
Peter King writes on Manti Te’o’s new beginnings in San Diego and more in this weeks’ MMQB.
King talks about which holdouts, rookies and injured stars he’ll be watching as OTAs continue (video).
Don Banks takes a look at what new regimes can spark unexpected playoff turnarounds.
Chris Burke looks at the 10 players who had the worst offseason.
Cameron Morfit thinks Tiger’s win at the Players could signal a big summer at the major championships.
Gary Van Sickle says Sergio vs. Tiger is the latest in golf’s tradition of lame excuses.
Stewart Mandel looks at the top nonconference games and more in his mailbag.
Andy Staples anaylizes 10 years of committee decisions had the new playoff been in place.
Seth Davis on how Nike’s Villa 7 gives up-and-coming hoops assistants forum to shine.
Andy Glockner says with Andrew Wiggins in the fold, Kansas is now a Final Four contender.
Jimmy Connors discusses his memoir, “The Outsider,” in a podcast with Jon Wertheim. Here Connors talks about his relationship with Chris Evert and his thoughts on rivalry in today’s game (video).
Bruce Jenkins says that Serena Williams proved again that she has no rivals.
Grant Wahl says Howard believes in Moyes at Manchester United and provides a Robbie Rogers update in his Planet Futbol Column.
Avi Creditor looks at how Americans abroad finished their seasons.
After testing positive for testosterone, Chris Mannix says Lamont Peterson is trying to win fans back.
Floyd Mayweather talks to Jon Weritheim about what else, money.
Jeff Wagenheim writes on how the UFC goes after marijuana users but continues to overlook the use of TRT by fighters.
Carl Estes provides this week’s power rankings.
Changes in the University’s Medical Care Contradict Promises to Operate Transparently
At a time when safety in football has never been more scrutinized, changes in Penn State University’s once-exemplary medical care, just 18 months after the biggest scandal in college sports history, contradicts recent promises by the school to reign in the athletic department and operate transparently, according to a special report in this week’s SPORTS ILLUSTRATED by senior writer David Epstein.
Wayne Sebastianelli, the beloved longtime Penn State director of athletic medicine and orthopedic surgeon-head physician for the football team since 1992, was relieved of his duties this past January as part of an abrupt shift in the school’s health-care program for football. Even more troubling are the circumstances surrounding the change. SI finds that the policy shift can be attributed to the controversial January 2013 appointment of athletic director David Joyner, a former member of the Penn State board of trustees who had no experience in athletic administration and had a contentious history with Sebastianelli. Just four days after Joyner officially assumed the full title of AD, Sebastianelli was ordered to clear out his office.
“Here we are trying to change our image and approach administrative changes with clarity and openness,” says Mac Evarts, former dean of Penn State’s College of Medicine and a current professor of orthopedics at the university, “and now we have another example of a decision being driving by athletics.” (PAGE 44)
Sebastianelli kept his title of director of athletic medicine, but his work with the football team, which included attending nearly every practice and game, was over. He was replaced by a new head physician, Peter Seidenberg, and Scott Lynch, an orthopedic consultant for football, who will now attend home games and at least one practice a week. Penn State released a statement at the time saying that the “change in physicians was made after a review of procedures and personnel by Coach Bill O’Brien and is part of an on-going re-organization of the football staff.” (PAGE 46)
O’Brien told SI that Joyner approved and implemented the changes that he recommended. However, trustee sources say that Joyner’s rationale for the change was cost savings. “It’s less good care,” says Vincent Pellegrini, the former chair of the department of orthopedics at Penn State “in exchange for saving a few bucks.” (PAGE 47)
The report finds that Joyner, an orthopedic surgeon and former All-America offensive lineman and wrestler at Penn State in the 1970s, actually campaigned for Sebastianelli’s job when it was created in 1992. Joyner previously served as the head physician to U.S. teams at the ’92 Winter Olympics and was the founder of Joyner Sports Medicine Institute (JSI), which developed 19 physical therapy centers in a number of states. The search committee chose Sebastianelli, a move that did not sit well with Joyner, according to Pellegrini. Over the next decade, Pellegrini said, “Penn State had a model program for sports medicine.” (PAGE 45)
According to current and former Penn State staff members, administrators, former players and longtime colleagues and friends of both Joyner and Sebastianelli, the decision started a rivalry between the two doctors. “Joyner kept working behind the scenes to become the sports medicine doctor at Penn State,” Evarts says. “And I have to tell you, now he’s taken advantage of what had been a long-standing, very competitive relationship with Sebastianelli.” Through a University spokesman, Joyner said, “It’s terribly unfortunate some want to make baseless accusations….The vast majority of Penn Staters want the focus to be on our dedicated student-athletes, as it should be.” (PAGE 45)
The special report also notes that O’Brien hired Penn State alum Tim Bream, who worked with Joyner at the ’92 Olympics, as athletic trainer in February 2012. Sources involved in health care for Penn State athletics who spoke with SI on the condition of anonymity say they saw Bream, who does not have a medical degree, engage in practices normally reserved for doctors, such as giving players anti-inflammatory drugs without a prescription and lancing a boil on a player’s neck. University medical sources also said that Bream told physicians to stop talking with the parents of players and that doctors should not spend as much time with the team.
Epstein spoke to former Penn State walk-on wide receiver Garrett Lerner. Lerner says Bream treated him in February with an electrical-stimulation machine that left two severe burns on his right leg. Epstein writes, “The greater problem in Lerner’s case, he says, was that later in the week, when his leg became painful, no physician was in the athletic training room to examine him, and the athletic trainers decided simply to keep the burns covered.” (PAGE 48) While Lerner insists that training staff took good care of him, his leg had become infected as he was not seen by a doctor for several days.
Even before the removal of Sebastianelli, Joyner’s appointment to AD was questioned. “You have to ask yourself how a member of the board of trustees was hired as AD without a national search,” says Brandon Short, a football captain in 1998 and ’99 (PAGE 45). Epstein refers to a November 2012 special report issued by the Pennsylvania auditor general that cites Joyner’s transition from trustee to AD as an example that conveys “a public message that influential insiders are running the university, and that objectivity and independent thinking are compromised.” (PAGE 46)
About the writer:
Senior Writer David Epstein writes about sports science and medicine, Olympic sports, and is an investigative reporter for SI. His science writing has won a number of awards, including the Society of Professional Journalists 2010 Deadline Club Award for an article on the genetics of sports performance. Since 2008, Epstein has co-written several of SI and SI.com’s most important investigative pieces, including the revelation that Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez tested positive for steroids in 2003, and a report that revealed a pattern of NCAA violations under former Ohio State football coach Jim Tressel.
With the NBA and NHL playoffs in full steam, daily baseball games and much more in the world of sports, there’s a chance you couldn’t get to all of the great content on SI.com this week. Inside SI has you covered. Here’s a selection of some of the top Sports Illustrated stories and video productions from the past week.
SI announced 10 finalists for its inaugural College Athlete of the Year.
Richard Deitsch reviews Fox Sports 1’s new big hires and more in his weekly Media Circus column.
Jeff Pearlman reminisces about the USFL 30 years later
Ian Thompson says Steph Curry is the latest to establish himself as a star in the playoffs.
Lee Jenkins writes that Kevin Durant can only do so much for OKC.
Rob Mahoney lists five players who have disappointed in the playoffs so far. He also notes the biggest surprises of the playoffs so far.
Do the NBA Playoffs Underdogs stand a chance? Chris Mannix and Maggie Gray discuss the Warriors and Bulls (video).
Mannix discusses how the injuries of Derrick Rose, Russell Westbrook and Amar’e Stoudemire have affected their respective teams (video).
Sara Kwak says the Isles vs. Penguins has been the most thrilling series so far.
Allan Muir says the Senators showed their superiority over the shorthanded Habs.
While this week’s SI cover man Sidney Crosby worked his magic in the Penguins’ Game 5 Win, Eli Bernstein says the play of both goalies proved to be the difference.
Stu Hackel on how the NHL may change their policy on head shots.
Tom Verducci says expensive free agents are once again failing to meet expectations.
Jay Jaffe says Matt Harvey is fastest-starting Mets ace ever.
Cliff Cocoran provides this week’s Awards Watch.
SI.com’s Tom Verducci takes a look at the increasing strikeout rate around the MLB and asks if the Braves’ power can overcome their swing-and-miss ways (video).
The Tigers top Joe Lemire’s power rankings.
Peter King notes differing draft strategies, who will control the ’14 draft and more in this week’s MMQB.
Jim Trotter writes on how the California workers comp bill will have a lasting effect on NFL players.
Don Banks asks if betters days are coming for minority hires in the NFL?
Chris Burke on each team’s most pressing question as minicamp looms.
Micahael Bamberger writes that TV saved Tiger Woods from withdrawing from the Masters.
Gary Van Sickle says McIlroy, Stricker and Scott make TPC Sawgrass look easy
Andy Staples takes a stab at his post spring top 25.
Holly Anderson hands out her Sixth annual Switzies, which celebrate the ‘best’ of the 2013 offseason.
Stewart Mandel on how Ohio State aims to break the SEC’s title streak in 2013.
Rick Pitino talks Kentucky Derby, Final Four and 2013-14′s prospects in a Q&A with Pete Thamel.
Luke Winn gives out his second annual data-based hoops awards.
Bruce Jenkins writes that Madrid red clay is a welcome sight after 2012 left all feeling blue
In his weekly mailbag, Jon Wertheim wonders if Serena Williams and Sloane Stephens can find peace.
Grant Wahl provides updates on Alex Morgan, Frank Lampard and various MLS nuggets in his Planet Futbol Column.
Jonathan Wilsion says David Moyes is a safe choice for Manchester United, but comes with risk.
Sid Lowe writes that Jose Mourinho’s separation from Real Madrid getting messy.
Floyd Mayweather tops Chris Mannix’s Pound-For-Pound Top 15.
Floyd Mayweather talks about his title fight victory over Robert Guerrero, and looks ahead towards the rest of his multi-fight contract (video).
Jeff Wagenheim discusses Anderson Silva’s punishment, Johny Hendricks’ beard, and more in his MMA mailbag.
Lars Anderson on what we learned on a rainy, dark day at Talladega.
Carl Estes provides this week’s power rankings.
It has been quite a week here at Sports Illustrated, with much of the attention centered on the Jason Collins story. So if you couldn’t get to all of the other great content on SI.com from this past week, Inside SI has you covered.
Here’s a selection of some of the top stories and video productions from our outstanding team of talent from the past week:
Click here and here to read all of the coverage on the groundbreaking Collins story, including his essay with Franz Lidz, commentary from SI managing editor Chris Stone, SI executive editor Jon Wertheim, Jason’s brother Jarron, Jason’s agent Arn Tellam, reaction from athletes, and more.
Who doesn’t love the Warriors, asks Phil Taylor after last night’s series clinching win over the Nuggets.
Chris Mannix on how the Celtics are improbably back in their series with the Knicks after Game 5 win.
Ian Thomsen writes that Bulls have reason for hope despite their loss to the Nets last night.
After being named rookie of the year, Thomsen says it could be just the start for Damian Lillard.
Ben Golliver says the Thunder are desperate after their game 5 loss to the Rockets.
Chris Mannix says OKC won’t last without Westbrook (video). Mannix also discusses NBA coaching vacancies and the potential for Phil Jackson to take on a GM role in the NBA (video).
Pete Thamel discusses his SI story on whether India can develop as a basketball power on the Inside SI Podcast with Richard Deitsch.
Brian Cazeneuve notes seven players with something to prove this postseason.
Stu Hackel on the intrigue of this year’s NHL playoffs.
Alan Muir on the Red Wing’s ugly win last night that evened their series with the Ducks.
Sara Kwak says the Capital’s beat the Rangers due to excelling on the Power play.
Tom Verducci says all the flawed Phillies can do is ride it out.
Jay Jaffe wonders if the 200-win pitcher is an endangered species.
Bryce Harper and Clay Buchholz headline Cliff Corcoran’s first Awards Watch of the season.
Joe Sheehan writes that pitching is the reason for the Red Sox great start.
Verducci explains how the Royals’ rotation depth should make them contenders for the AL Central crown (video).
Ted Keith and Stephen Cannella discuss the April MLB trends that have the potential to continue into May (video).
Peter King tries to makes sense of the draft’s biggest hits and misses in this week’s MMQB.
King discusses Tim Tebow’s future after being let go by the New York Jets (video).
Don Banks on who has won the 2013 NFL offseason.
Reigning NFL MVP Adrian Peterson talks with SI’s Maggie Gray about his desire to rush for 2,500 yards, win multiple rings, and how this off-season has been different without having to rehab his knee (video).
Richard Deitsch reviews ESPN and NFL Network’s coverage of the NFL draft.
2014 Mock Chris Burke takes a stab at a very early 2014 mock draft.
Tim Layden says the wide-open 139th Kentucky Derby filled with uplifting stories.
Watch Layden discuss why the Kentucky Derby is so hard to predict (video).
Michael Bamberger uncovers that Champions Tour player David Eger was the TV viewer who called in Tiger Woods’s rules violation at the Masters.
Bamberger says we could all learn a thing or two from Guan Tianlang.
SI Golf writers and an anonymous Tour Pro answer questions in a Players Championship Preview edition of PGA Tour Confidential.
Pete Thamel tells the story of Dick Kelley, the beloved Boston College media relations guru who is battling ALS.
Luke Winn’s look at 2013-14’s top 32 NCAA Hoops teams following the NBA draft deadline.
Andy Glockner hands out NBA draft declaration deadline winners and losers.
Stewart Mandel weighs in on the new Big Ten alignment, the playoff and more in his mailbag.
Pete Thamel sits down for a Q&A with Duke coach David Cutcliffe.
20 years later, Bruce Jenkins remembers Monica Seles’ stabbing and how it changed her career.
Despite working countless hours on the Jason Collins story, Jon Wertheim still found time for his weekly Tennis Mailbag.
Grant Wahl writes on the rise of Bundesliga, the return of Donovan and more in his soccer mailbag.
Newcastle faces crucial final matches amid rumor and accusations writes Georgina Turner.
Raphael Honigstein takes an early look at what to watch in all-German Champions League final.
Chris Mannix says that Floyd Mayweather has a newfound level of maturity after serving time in jail.
Mannix predicts a dominant performance from Floyd Mayweather when he fights Robert Guerrero this weekend in Las Vegas (video).
Jeff Wagenheim writes that despite his beatdown, Chael Sonnen was just 27 seconds away from the title.
Car Estes with his weekly NASCAR power rankings.
The constant firing and hiring of college coaches is quite common these days. But how are these decisions actually made? In this week’s SI, senior writer George Dohrmann finds that search firms who command top dollar for work that doesn’t always pay off have changed the power landscape in college athletics and have become the norm when schools look to make new hires. Dohrmann dives into the benefits and handicaps that these search firms bring to the process.
“Having a partner to provide outside counsel can eliminate bias, maximize the efficiency and confidentiality of the process, and ultimately help guide us to the most informed decision possible,” says Jim Phillips, the Northwestern athletic director who recently used a headhunting firm to hire Chris Collins as his new head men’s basketball coach (PAGE 45).
On average the service of these search firms cost $30,000-$90,000 per hire, but there have been reported cases of firms charging far more, such as Colorado State paying Spencer Stuart $250,000 to help them choose Jim McElwain as their head football coach. While the amount of money may seem excessive in a time when higher education is losing funding at alarming rates, there are reasons why schools prefer to use search firms.
Dohrman finds that many athletic directors feel that outside consultants can initiate coaching searches much earlier than schools. They can begin the search and maintain a sense of privacy for both those interested in the position and the school itself. Firms are also capable of finding out information that is sometimes not known to universities, such as personal issues that colleges may not find in background checks. But perhaps most importantly, hiring an outside source to conduct searches for universities can show proof of the diligence and effort that went into a hire if it should not pan out well, which creates a cover for athletic directors.
With glaring benefits come equally important drawbacks. Dohrmann finds that some consulting firms will operate as “gatekeepers”. “They want to be decision makers and influence who is going to be interviewed and who is going to be selected,” explains Bill Carr, founder of Carr Sports Associates. These firms tend to push favored candidates rather than tailor a search to a programs needs.
An example of such instance is Jack Swarbrick, currently Notre Dame’s athletic director. Before his hiring in South Bend, he was a candidate for NCAA president, the AD of Indiana, Arizona State and Ohio State. Parker Executive Searches assisted in all of these hiring’s and eventually landed Swarbrick his current position. The constant push of a single client makes one question how tailored these searches really were. After Swarbrick was eventually hired, he then used the same firm who placed him to hire current Notre Dame football coach Brian Kelly, which continued the cycle of loyalty to a single source.
Another general fear is that the repeat use of the firms will cause loyalty that is not in each universities best interest. A general understanding of if we help you, you help us, could lead to bad placements such as the ones felt in Minnesota with the hiring’s of Tubby Smith for basketball and Tim Brewster for football, both of whom have since been fired.
But while the recycled use of clients and firms cast a suspicious light on the coach search consulting industry, the process is still defended by its users.
“Repeat clients are standard in the search business,” defends Laurie Wilder, the executive vice president of Parker, a firm responsible for the hiring of at least 40 athletic directors. “If you build a relationship and if you do quality work, people ask you to do quality work again. Just speaking about Parker, there has never been an environment where we say we will put you in as a candidate if you do this.”