Tarlin Ray and Mike Palmer are back from youth volleyball tournaments in Vegas and SXSW EDU in Austin to dig into the ongoing Ja Morant story as we outline a series of incidents that have resulted in his suspension from the Grizzlies. What advice do we have for a “Likes-to-Fight” guy like Ja? What lessons can we draw from the story of Gilbert “Agent Zero” Arenas and Javaris Crittenton bringing guns to the Washington Wizards’ locker room? What other stories of incidents from the past can provide perspective on how Ja can sort things out for himself as the transcendent 23-year-old talent grapples with his season on the brink? Listen in to find out.
Mike and Tarlin are back to talk about Lessons Learned from the NBA with the recent team shakeups across the league as we prepare for the stretch run after the All-Star Game. Kyrie and KD are no longer Nets and that has set off ripple effects that have transformed the NBA. We get Mike’s reactions to the new look Knicks and Nets and hear from Tarlin about his revamped Lakers before digging into the new Big 4 with the Suns and how they shape up against Jokic’s Nuggets and the new pecking order in the Western Conference. The leadership in the East is clearly Boston, Milwaukee, and Philadelphia. Mike issues an “Intangibles Alert” with the crafty Jae Crowder heading to the Bucks. What have the experiments with Big 3s and so-called “Super Teams” taught us so far and how does this set us up for the rest of this season? We try to answer this while also reflecting on the sale of the Suns from Robert Sarver to bench player for the 2000 NCAA Champion Michigan State Spartans, Matt Ishbia, and what it means for the league.
Then we conclude by reflecting on LeBron breaking Kareem’s All-Time NBA Scoring record in a wide-ranging romp through the exciting and vastly transformed NBA in 2023. Don’t miss it.
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Tarlin and Mike are back to kick off 2023 with our NFL Super Bowl, Black History Month, Black Quarterback, and Coaching Carousel edition. We start by running it back to NFL Combine reports on Super Bowl QBs Jalen Hurts and Patrick Mahomes. From there we talk about swagger, high floors, low ceilings, vice versa, and more. How do Hurts and Mahomes compare with fellow draftees Zach Wilson and Mitch Trubisky? What lessons can we learn from this about assessing talent and uncovering inherent biases in a system like the NFL?
Then we pivot to Big Red, aka Andy Reid, to understand his success and that of his coaching tree before zeroing in on what the stories of Eric Bieniemy, Steve Wilkes, and Lovie Smith (and his beard) teach us about where the NFL is today and how far it still has to go.
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Mike and Tarlin are back again. This time to reflect on what we’ve all just witnessed as we look back for lessons learned from an incredible year in sports.
We begin with Tarlin’s shout-out to Aaron Judge for betting on himself and winning with a big contract as something to learn from and be inspired by. This leads us into discussions of football with QBs like Lamar Jackson making similar bets with potentially different outcomes and risk profiles. This sparks a conversation about system quarterbacks versus tailoring the system to the quarterback. After a brief sidetrack to talk about the transcendent World Cup Final we just witnessed and the importance of learning how to shout “MBAPPE!!!” in public, we return to the examples of Justin Fields, Zach Wilson, and Brock Purdy in a free-flowing exploration of identifying talent, building chemistry, and being willing to innovate around the talent you have, not the talent you think you should have. We include quick thoughts on the release of Brittney Griner and how it should make Tarlin watch the Ali Documentary on PBS before concluding with some notes on Chemistry in the NBA and more.
We had an amazing year. Thanks to everyone who is listening. Be on the lookout for more episodes on lessons learned from sports in January of 2023!
Tarlin and Mike are back for our 54th episode of Running It Back. We’re taking the occasion to dig into LIV Golf, Sportswashing, and the disruption we’re seeing to the staid traditions of PGA Golf. What can we learn from golfers choosing to go to a new league backed by Saudi money with big purses, fewer holes, and what we hear are fantastic amenities?
How will this affect the product we consume as sports watchers? What does this mean for the players? And what are the implications of the innovation, intrigue, and other soap opera-like that are being infused into an older and more conservative sport? Don’t miss this wide-ranging, relevant, and thought-provoking conversation that is in fact our 54th episode of Running It Back.
Are there lessons to be learned from Kobe’s leadership? Or from Coach K’s coaching tactics? And how do even the greatest players in the world have to relearn the game and how they can contribute to the team in new ways to win?
Tarlin and Mike are back to talk about their guilty pleasure, the NFL, in light of the concussion(s) to Tua Tagovailoa in recent games–within four days from Sunday to Thursday night. We explore Tua’s extensive injury history and find parallels in other players like Austin Collie who also displayed the “fencing position” after a concussion and who never returned to the same level afterwards.
We also reflect on the NFL’s tendency to be reactive to situations like this and anticipate changes to the NFL concussion protocols in light of the Tua incident. Are they exhibiting “an abundance of caution” or are they ultimately driven by their bottom line? How did Coach Mike McDaniel, the Players Association, and the NFL respond and what lessons can we learn from there? And what do we think about the future of Thursday night games? We cover all of this and reflect on the joys of a good night’s sleep. Don’t miss it!
Tarlin and Mike are back. This time to kick off our third season of Running It Back with a far-reaching crossfade across the various narratives and lessons learned capturing our attention from the sports universe.
We talk about Serena and Roger moving on from tennis and how Roger’s range may be a dwindling resource in an age of early specialization. Hat-tip to David Epstein’s book Range for some of our perspectives there. Then we look to the NFL for quarterback controversy and think through how the Trey Lance and Jimmy G. saga might analogize to CEO succession planning. We touch on the Mets and Dodgers from baseball as well as the Robert Sarver affair in the NBA before a few parting shots regarding the LIV Tour in golf in a free-ranging survey of the topics we’ll be digging into as we come back strong for Season 3 of Running It Back. Thanks for joining us for the ride!
Subscribe to Running It Back wherever you get your podcasts. Visit us at RunningItBack.fm for more incredible lessons learned from across the wide world of sports.
Tarlin and Mike are back to celebrate our 50th episode of Running It Back, the Lessons Learned from Sports Podcast. What began as an outlet for us in the midst of the sports-starved days of the first wave of the Covid-19 pandemic has now grown into a real body of work, an oeuvre, and a platform to grow.
We share highlights from our favorite episodes including Mike’s son Matthew’s appearance, Tarlin’s Ode to Tiger, and much more. We let listeners in on our creative process as we learn from the data and spitball what topics to cover next. And of course, there’s plenty of talk of Space Jam, Scottie Pippen memoirs, The Rooney Rule, Black Quarterbacks and more. We even celebrate some great 50s before we wrap.
Thanks to everyone who’s been with us so far. Subscribe wherever you get your podcasts to keep up with the latest. Visit us at RunningItBack.fm for more as we embark on our next 50. We look forward to you joining us for the ride!
Tarlin and Mike are back. This time to remember the 50th anniversary of Title IX and its impact on equity and sports. Our taping occurred just after the decision by the US Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade to return reproductive rights to the states. We use the time to look for lessons from Title IX while processing the potential impact of the ruling. We read the 37 words preventing discrimination in education “on the basis of sex.”
How has Title IX led to the evolution of our cultural understanding of women as athletes, teammates, and leaders? How did the work of Patsy Mink and other lawmakers in 1972 set the stage for the ongoing fight for equity in women’s sports? What should we expect from athletes like Megan Rapinoe, Serena Williams, Naomi Osaka and others in light of the recent ruling? And how have we benefitted from the personalities and narratives we’ve followed in women’s sports since 1972.
We also take a moment to reflect on the impact of Title IX on male athletes like recent NBA Draft pick, Jaden Ivey, whose mother, Neile, benefitted from the opportunities afforded by Title IX to raise her son as a successful WNBA player and leader. Is this reflective of the experiences of other #boymoms everywhere? How should we understand how Title IX impacts men?
We conclude by thinking of the future of women as leaders in the coming years and how we can continue to push to provide more opportunity and access in these challenging times.