Southern Sports


Farmers and Families and Football and Fools

I watched, sparingly (I was mostly playing chess against the computer) two football games recently (9-30-23) Ole Miss vs. L.S.U. and Miss State vs Alabama. The won-lost column for my Mississippi roots (which run deep and proud) was 1-1. Miss Southern lost to Texas State but they were not on the single channel that I, again sparingly, watched. I keep…
Paul H. Yarbrough
October 6, 2023

NASCAR Goes Sissy

“As with so many other episodes in early American history, the true story of the so-called Whiskey Rebellion has been purposefully scrubbed from the collective American memory and replaced with a cleaner, more pro-statist version reaffirming one of the core tenets of that doctrine: federal law always trumps conflicting state statutes.” Joe Wolverton, The Abbeville Institute, “A Little Whiskey Rebellion.”…
Paul H. Yarbrough
August 3, 2022

Dixie Ball

It’s strange to think that until 1962 — when the Houston’s Colt .45’s enjoyed their inaugural season as an expansion team — the only baseball teams in the South were on its northernmost borderlands: Baltimore, St. Louis, and Washington, D.C. Of course, like all professional sports, baseball is about money, and profits are easily made in densely-populated urban centers, of…
Casey Chalk
April 1, 2021

“Fight for Old Dixie!”

This Thanksgiving, the second of three NFL games will feature one of the oldest (albeit moribund) rivalries in professional football history: the Dallas Cowboys and the Washington Football Team, previously known as the Redskins. Since the late 1970’s, the Cowboys, who with the Detroit Lions always play on Thanksgiving, have been nicknamed “America’s Team.” Yet Washington, who under woke capitalist…
Casey Chalk
November 26, 2020

The Guns of September

Reminiscences and Ramblings of a Novice Wing-Shooter It was the First of September, 2019 and there I sat, in the pre-dawn twilight, half asleep and fighting the near irresistible temptation, provided by the comfortable blanket of darkness that enveloped me, to “rest my eyes”. I guess that’s what you get for having longtime friends (and, soon-to-be hunting companions) over the…
Travis Archie
September 24, 2020

Root, Root, Root for the Home Team

The 150th season of college football serves as a reminder of the intersection between sports and local communities. While the nationalization of sports media outlets brings games and analysis to every living room in America, fan culture retains a very distinct regional and local flavor. College football is one of the greatest testimonies to the endurance of localism in America…
Brian Koss
October 2, 2019

Athletes and Education: Mutually Exclusive

Athletes gain money when they gain attention. Just like Congressmen. Ole Miss basketball players kneel in deference to standing for the National Anthem. Again, athletes, many of whom have an academic pedigree from high school that suggests borderline literacy, have taken a stand –oops—a kneel for something or against something. Who the hell knows why these muscle-bound morons do what…
Paul H. Yarbrough
March 13, 2019

Shoeless Joe

Two of the poems I most admire are very short. One is simply a name - Shoeless Joe Jackson. Read it aloud and feel the assonance and alliteration. The other is a phrase Say it ain't so, Joe, delivered sadly, with its final rhyme. There is a mythic quality in both of these poems. The name, Shoeless Joe Jackson; the…
Ray Merlock
December 13, 2018
Review Posts

The Real Ty Cobb

A Review of Ty Cobb: A Terrible Beauty, by Charles Leerhsen, (Simon & Schuster, 2015). Baseball fans familiar with major league records remember Ty Cobb for his .366 lifetime batting average during the dead-ball era. Some may even remember that he held more than 90 baseball records. During his career, Cobb was the idol of millions of fans and received…
Norman Black
October 2, 2018

The Attack on “Dixie” in Sports and Music

Sound was the first victim of the attack on southern heritage. In October 1971, the University of Georgia’s “Dixie Redcoat Marching Band”  dropped the word “Dixie” from its name and discontinued playing the song “Dixie” after the National Anthem. Many people, even to this day, will argue that “Dixie” was played and perpetuated to uphold white supremacy. But the tradition…
Michael Martin
June 22, 2018

The Burning of Atlanta

I don’t watch sports as I once did. Growing up down South some of my fondest memories were of the World Series, and the radio connection through Al Helfer, Red Barber or Mel Allen. I can still hear those voices. I know there are fewer and fewer of us who recall those moments, but those still around recognize my sentiments.…
Paul H. Yarbrough
February 16, 2017

A Man’s Interest: Sports and the South

I am a Georgian and a University of Georgia alumni. I have been a fan of all the Atlanta sports franchises since I was a kid, and I was a huge fan of the Georgia Bulldogs even before I went there. Needless to say, I was very disappointed by the outcome of the Super Bowl, and since Atlanta/Georgia is a…
Dan E. Phillips
February 9, 2017

Football and the South

Are you ready? Hell yea! Damn right! Hotty Toddy, gosh almighty, Who the hell are we? HEY! Flim Flam, Bim Bam, OLE MISS BY DAMN! WARNNING: Blasphemy ahead. College football has long cast a powerful spell upon the minds and hearts of the people below Mason’s and Dixon’s line. Team flags fly from cars and porches openly declaring the citizenship…
John Devanny
October 20, 2014

American Soccer Fandom as Cosmopolitan Affectation

Recently, Major League Soccer announced that it would be expanding into Atlanta. I like to tease soccer fans, because they’re so sensitive, so I took the occasion to get off a few good jabs at my soccer loving virtual friends. I suggested that If Atlanta has any self-respect left as a Southern city, then soccer should fail here as the…
Dan E. Phillips
June 13, 2014

College Football

Yankees don’t understand the Southern obsession with college football, and if they don’t understand it, then they naturally believe there’s something wrong with it. As for me, I don’t hate hockey. I’ve just never been exposed to it enough to like it. I know enough about it to know that it was a horrible mistake once to attempt staying awake…
Tom Daniel
May 8, 2014