Hat tip to E.C. Stoner for the Brees video.
Futures: Matt Barkley - This was last week’s column. Tomorrow’s analysis is on West Virginia Receiver Tavon Austin.
Russell Wilson’s Seam Pass to Zach Miller - Danny Kelly at Field Gulls is one of the cooler bloggers I’ve had the pleasure to interact with during my first year and a half doing this work. He has been extremely generous with posting my work on his site and I wish I had discovered his work as an analyst sooner. This is a fantastic piece on Russell Wilson that demonstrates why Wilson has skills to start in the N.F.L. Go ahead, bring up the 49ers game last night. You done? Good. Read.
A Former NFL Player’s Inside Scoop on Aaron Rodgers – If you weren’t done about Wilson then I suggest this fascinating read about Rodgers at Cal from his former teammate Ryan Riddle. As usual, excellent stuff that describes a debut that left Rodgers crying the night away alone in his room. All quarterbacks go through rough patches.
Nick Saban Doesn’t Teach Back-Pedaling - Always good stuff at Smart Football.
10 Things Most Americans Don’t Know About America - I love this country. I feel I need to state it as a preface for what you’ll read in this link. As someone who has lived abroad, (although I have very limited travels outside the U.S.) I think a lot of this writer’s points are dead-on about how a lot of Americans see the world. Read it with an open mind.
Letter to Emily White at NPR All Songs Considered - David Lowery founded the bands Cracker and Camper Van Beethoven. He has also worked in finance and studied computer science at Cal Tech. One of the best lectures I ever saw in the past 10 years was Lowery delivering a guest lecture to music business students at my place of employment. Now he’s faculty at the department. This open letter made the rounds at Huffington Post and Forbes. A detailed, intelligent read about ripping music.
Cormac McCarthy’s Early Drafts of Blood Meridian - I took a course on post modern literature when I was an undergrad in the 1990s and my professor had us study McCarthy’s novel All The Pretty Horses, which is a fantastic work. However the work my professor couldn’t stop referring to was Blood Meridian, which has a cult following among those devoted to this great novelist’s work. Here’s an article about the writer and his early drafts. If you haven’t ready anything by McCarthy, start with The Road. I sent it to my dad for Father’s Day a few years ago and while I expected him to look at the plot and think I was out of my mind, he loved it. Get one for your dad, too.
Ten Jazz Albums to Listen to Before You Die - Joseph Lapin’s list is by no means a definitive one. There’s no Duke Ellington, Charlie Parker, or Count Basie, which isn’t saying Lapin doesn’t know what he’s talking about. The fact is, you can’t have a definitive list of 10. Maybe 100 with a lot of kvetching from serious listeners. Most of Lapin’s list is work created after 1950. That said, it’s a fantastic list of modern jazz that includes stuff that purists will complain about. Purists and fundamentalists ought to have a convention in the Superdome during the next category five hurricane. Did I just say that? I didn’t really mean it. The best part is this list has embedded YouTube displays of songs from the albums and often the entire albums for your listening experience.
Even if you don’t watch the entire show, check out this section where the band creates a galloping horse. Fantastic.