No. 37

by Ben Dieter

doak-walker-detroit-lionsNo. 37 was a tough one, there were not as many to chose from as some of the other numbers, and I decided to go with Doak Walker. The native Texan played his entire career with the Detroit Lions, where he was a all-star four times, led the NFL in scoring twice, and led the Lions to back to back NFL Championships in 1952 and 1953. Walkers number has been retired by the Lions and he is in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

Walker played a long time ago, but his accomplishments are still impressive. He has an award named after him that is given to the best running back in college football every year. Walker died in 1998, but his memory lives on through his award. Doak Walker is the best athlete to ever wear number 37.

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NolanThe Following post was written by Nathan Hague for the Marshall News Messenger.

If he wanted to, Nolan Ryan could probably run for the governor of Texas and win in a landslide. He’s beloved by Houston Astros fans and deeply missed by Texas Rangers fans. Back in 2010, I attended a game in Houston while Ryan was the CEO of the Rangers, and the Astros were giving away bobble heads of Ryan. Both sides have always claimed them as their own and at that time, I bragged to Astros fans that Ryan is a true Ranger. Now, the tables are turned, and the Ryan Express has is in H-Town as the Rangers are currently in dismay and their fans are wondering if the club is suffering from the curse of the Ryan Express.

Baseball is full of curses, or at least rumors of them. The Chicago Cubs haven’t won a World Series since 1908 and many people hold fast to the belief that it’s because of the curse of the Billy Goat. William “Billy Goat” Sianis wanted to bring his pet goat to Wrigley for a World Series game in 1945 but was denied the right by the owner who said the goat smelled. Before exiting the park, Sianis said, “You are going to lose this World Series and you are never going win another World Series again. You are never going to win a World Series again because you insulted my goat.” So far, he’s right.

Back-to-back curses were broken in 2004 and 2005. The first was the Curse of the Bambino, probably the most famous of baseball. In 1903, The Boston Red Sox won the very first World Series and that was followed by five more World Series wins in the course of the next 10 years. For who knows why, the Red Sox traded legendary Babe Ruth to their rivals, the New York Yankees, who went on to have a significant amount of success as Boston went through 86-year drought. That curse was broken when the Red Sox came back down three games to none in the ALCS where they defeated the Yankees and earned their way to the World Series.

The White Sox had their turn at breaking a curse the following year. Eight members of the 1919 White Sox were involved in a conspiracy to throw the World Series and the team was dubbed the “Black Sox.” The Curse of the Black Sox was broken when the club won the 2005 World Series.

The Ryan Express helped guide the Rangers to back-to-back World Series but they couldn’t quite get over the hump and be World Series champions. Members of the Rangers’ front office were power hungry and Ryan eventually eased his way out of Arlington, and eventually landed back in Houston, the same year that the Astros joined the American League West, and finished with the best record between the two Texas teams.

Then the Rangers hosted the Astros for their home opener, as disaster struck. News was released that Derek Holland will be out for about two months. Shin-Soo Choo was sidelined with an injury and Ryan Rua headed was put on the DL. On top of that, the Rangers entered the 2015 season with news of their ace, Yu Darvish, being out for the year due to having Tommy John surgery. Trades and free agency moves made by the club weren’t the type of moves Ryan would’ve wanted and all signs point to him being right. If it weren’t for Ryan, the Rangers would never have been to the World Series and now, it certainly looks like they’re not going back. If the Astros go back to before the Rangers, we’ll know the Curse of the Ryan Express is the real deal. Hopefully, like a couple of the other curses, this one too can be broken.

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No. 38

Curt Schilling didn’t get his call from Cooperstown, much to the surprise of many people. You’d be hard-pressed to find too many people who have played the game better than Schilling and you’d be even more hard-pressed to find a better athlete in all of sports to wear No. 38. One of the things Schilling […]

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NFL to use Nerf footballs?

The following may not be true, but how big of a stretch is it really? GLENDALE AZ — In the wake of what many are calling “DeflateGate”, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell proposed his own solution: “Nerf or Nothing”. “There are many advantages to using Nerf footballs and to quickly dismiss the ideas of implementing them […]

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No. 39

In 1968, Akron, Ohio native Larry Csonka took his talents to South Beach when he was drafted by the Miami Dolphins. It was there that the fullback sported No. 39 and helped lead the 1972 Dolphins to a perfect 17-0 record on their way to win Super Bowl VII. The Dolphins went back the following […]

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Best of the 40s

When it comes to choosing the best of the 40s in our Jersey Countdown, there’s really no contest. When one’s number is retired league wide in his sport, that says all you need to know. That’s the cast for Jackie Robinson, and only Jackie Robinson who’s No. 42 is retired from the sport, except for […]

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No. 40 – Gale Sayers

There have been some good athletes to wear the number 40 over the years and in all sports. Bill Laimbeer comes to mind in the NBA, Troy Percival was a good baseball closer once completing 42 saves in one season. But in my opinion, the best player to ever wear No. 40 was Gale Sayers. […]

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Super Bowl Winners’ Bracket

As sports fans, we’re all constantly comparing athletes and teams of different eras when there’s really no way of knowing for certain. How would Tom Brady do against Terry Bradshaw? Could Troy Aikman and company beat the Packers in the Ice Bowl? Well perhaps now we can know. I’ve put together a bracket of all […]

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NBA Preview

On our last podcast, we previewed the NBA by giving our Finals Preview, MVP and Coach of the Year. Before we get too far into the NBA, I just like to say I change my pick for Coach of the Year from Rick Carlisle to Doc Rivers. The reason for change is not because the […]

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No. 41

Dirk Nowitzki is a legend. If there were a real Mount Rushmore of Dallas sports, one would be hard pressed not to include him on there, but that’s a debate for another time. There’s no debate that Nowitzki is beloved by Dallas and he has returned that love. He could’ve made way more money playing […]

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