• Pregame Prayers Under Attack at High Schools, Colleges

    by Michael Popke — AB Managing Editor August 2012

    Football teams and fans in Georgia, Mississippi and Tennessee have responded in a variety of ways to warnings from a Madison, Wis.-based national state-church watchdog group targeting pregame prayers. For months, the Freedom From Religion Foundation has been sending letters to school superintendents and college chancellors objecting to the practice of opening football games and other school or university functions with a prayer.

  • Blog: Olympic Gold Medal Cheater Riles Former Swim Ref

    by Michael Popke — AB Managing Editor August 2012

    For three years, I was a USA Swimming-certified stroke and turn official, which means I stood at the end of a pool for hours making sure each and every swimmer in my lane (or, as was more typical, my lanes) legally executed their strokes. If not, it was my duty to disqualify that swimmer. Most of the DQs I issued were to kids 14 and younger, and I'm pretty sure the majority of them knew they screwed up before I even raised my arm to report the infraction to the head referee.

  • Smoking Bans Take Effect in Parks and Other Outdoor Areas

    by Emily Attwood May 2012

    Aligning itself with policies already in place in New York City, New York state parks, beaches and playgrounds went smoke-free in April.

  • Fighting in Ice Hockey Faces Unprecedented Scrutiny

    by Paul Steinbach April 2012

    Derek Boogaard's brain is handled with care these days. It resides with dozens of others at Boston University, donated to the Sports Legacy Institute so that it might be studied for signs of long-term damage.

  • Exercise Intervention Policies in Campus Fitness Centers

    by Emily Attwood March 2012

    Today's generation of incoming college freshmen expect a college to deliver the full package - not just a good education, but the latest technology, luxurious dorms, state-of-the art buildings, an elite athletic program and of course, an extensive offering of recreational activities to keep them busy outside of class.

  • Shaving Incident Costs Girls' Swim Team Its Title

    by Emily Attwood February 2012

    From the "You Never Thought This Rule Would be Enforced" file, a violation by a member of the Broadneck (Md.) High School girls' swim team retroactively cost the team its county title and prevented the coach from watching the squad sweep regional titles last weekend. The infraction? Shaving at the meet.

  • Blog: Kids' Tennis Change Comes with Huge Upside Potential

    by Mary Helen Sprecher January 2012

    We throw around the words 'game changer' quite a bit. But this week, there really is one, and you'll find it on tennis courts.

  • 2012 Olympics Chief: Gambling Bigger Threat Than Doping

    by Emily Attwood January 2012

    While doping scandals have marred the image of the Olympic Games in past years, organizers of the 2012 Games in London are bracing for a new type of scandal: gambling. Minister for sport Hugh Robertson believes that contest-fixing will become a bigger concern, both to the Olympic Games and sports in general, as illegal betting syndicates in India and other parts of the Far East grow unchecked. He expects at least £300M ($467M) to be wagered in Britain alone during the London Games - which run from July 27 to Aug. 12. Spot-betting, in which wagers are placed not on the outcome of a contest but the occurrence or timing of a particular incident or event within a contest, is of particular concern, says the minister, recalling the November arrest of three Pakistani cricket players for spot-fixing during a 2010 match.

  • Athletic Departments and First Amendment Rights of Student Journalists

    by Paul Steinbach October 2011

    Aaron Smith was looking forward to joining a dozen or so members of the mainstream media at a scheduled gathering of University of Kentucky men's basketball players, each of whom would be available for eight-minute one-on-one interviews.

  • Administrators to High School Cheerleaders: Cover Up

    by Michael Popke — AB Managing Editor September 2011

    Cheerleaders in high schools from coast to coast are in danger of losing the privilege of wearing their uniforms to school on game days, as administrators crack down on dress-code violations.