The Malice in the Palace

Tarlin and Mike run it back to November of 2004 where the infamous Malice in the Palace took place in Auburn Hills, Michigan. We draw parallels between a recent spate of incidents between players and fans and what quickly escalated into the worst fracas in NBA history during a game between the Detroit Pistons and Indiana Pacers. The Malice involved players fighting fans in the stands and on the court and was much more severe than what we’ve seen in the 2021 NBA Playoffs so far, but we look for lessons to be learned for today here.

If you want to refresh your memory, here’s the video of the melee. And here’s a great interview of Reggie Miller by Dan Patrick that gets at what it was like to be amid the chaos back in the day.

Ron Artest, Ben Wallace, Stephen Jackson and others brought a toughness that we haven’t seen lately in the NBA, but the roiling emotions and poor boundaries on the part of fans can lead to out-of-control scenes like what we saw in Detroit in 2004. We spend time finding narratives and connections to the Malice in the Palace that resonates in the disruptive times we’re living in today.

If you enjoy what you’re hearing, subscribe wherever you get your podcast. Visit us at RunningItBack.fm for more great shows like this.

Naomi Osaka’s Withdrawal from the 2021 French Open Due to Mental Health

Tarlin and Mike are back to draw lessons learned from Naomi Osaka’s recent withdrawal from the 2021 French Open citing mental health concerns around appearing for press conferences. We dig into this kerfuffle with the leadership of Roland-Garros over her decision to skip press conferences so she could focus on tennis and run it back to recent tennis history with Naomi’s first Grand Slam title at the 2018 US Open versus her idol, Serena Williams. That match is emotionally challenging to watch and it clearly has had a profound impact on Osaka that we wanted to explore more deeply.

Whether it’s the tennis of the match itself, the cringe-worthy umpiring controversy between Serena and umpire Cesar Ramos, the equally painful to watch Trophy Ceremony, or Naomi’s post-match press conference in 2018, we explore all the angles to try to understand and empathize with where Naomi is coming from.

Along the way, we dig into other famously awkward media appearances by Allen Iverson, Marshawn Lynch, Rasheed Wallace, Greg Popovich, and Bill Belichek before concluding with our thoughts on mental health awareness and the recent trend towards its destigmatization in sports. Naomi is taking a stand here as a role model and leader in Gen Z and we want to recognize her courage as we look to learn from the history contentious relationships between athletes like Naomi and the press.

If you like what you’re hearing subscribe to Running It Back wherever you get your podcasts and visit us at RunningItBack.fm

Sports Parenting Lessons from the Houses of Woods, Williams and Ball

Tarlin and Mike return again. This time to run it back to the history of dominant sports dads who built cultures and drew fire as their offspring rose to unprecedented heights in the sports world. We begin by looking at the story of LeVar Ball who is attempting to build a family business in the NBA with Lonzo Ball and likely 2021 Rookie of the Year LaMelo Ball already thriving. From there, we run it back to the narratives around Earl Woods raising Tiger Woods and Richard Dove Williams Jr raising Venus and Serena Williams.

What do these stories have in common and what lessons can we learn about parenting, leadership, and family? We explore all of this and also look at the frequently unsung roles of the mothers in these sports families. Are we really talking about Co-CEOs as the key to building a sports legend? How are these alpha Dads reminiscent of Steve Jobs? And is Kultida Woods truly the Tiger Mom of all Tiger Moms?

Listen in to find out. And be sure to subscribe to Running It Back wherever you get your podcasts. Visit us at RunningItBack.fm for more great shows like this!

Black Quarterbacks and the NFL Draft

With the NFL Draft approaching, Tarlin and Mike return to explore the history of black quarterbacks taken in the first round over the years. We begin with a quick breakdown of the prospects for the 2021 draft with Trevor Lawrence and Justin Fields among those at the top of the list. How does race intersect with the predraft hype and projections for Fields, Lawrence, and others?

From there we run it back through the history of black QBs taken in the first round and even share the story of one Willie “Mitts” Thrower who was the first black man to take a snap as QB in the NFL back in 1953. We talk about Doug Williams, Warren Moon and even Kordel Stewart, aka “Slash” as we look for lessons from the past and ways to learn from examples throughout the years.

Whether it’s Michael Vick, Daunte Culpepper, or Donovan McNabb, we look to the past to help understand the present in an insightful jaunt down memory lane. We conclude with a particularly salient example of why giving black players a shot at the CEO position on the field makes all the difference

If you love what you’re hearing, subscribe wherever you get your podcasts and visit us at RunningItBack.fm for more amazing lessons learned from the world of sports.

Linsanity – Lessons Learned from a Magical Run

Tarlin and Mike are back to talk about Jeremy Lin’s historic hot streak back in 2012 when he took advantage of his opportunity with the New York Knicks to break through and lead the team to an amazing winning streak before being sidelined with an injury and getting traded to the Houston Rockets. We explore what got him to that point and why he captured the global consciousness at the time before shifting focus to what lessons we can draw from his experience both during the stratospheric heights of 2012 to what is now a 10 year professional career in the NBA.

We also explore his role as a trailblazer, a role model, and an influencer as issues of AAPI hate and bias have recently bubbled up in America and beyond. We talk through what Linsanity means to Knicks fans (Mike) and Harvard Alums (Tarlin) before concluding with takeaways about self-belief, focus and preparation in what we hope is an inspirational return trip to a magical performance during a brief stretch of time nearly 10 years ago.

Thanks as always for Running It Back with us. If you like what you’re hearing subscribe wherever you get your podcasts and check us out at RunningItBack.fm.

Steph Curry’s Legendary NCAA Tourney Run at Davidson

Tarlin and Mike are back to talk about Stephen Curry, the shooter and gamechanger. What lessons can we learn from Steph’s first emergence onto the national stage in the 2008 NCAA Tournament when Davidson advanced to the Elite Eight as a 10-seed?

How does the House of Curry stack up against other NBA lineages? How does Steph compare to Reggie Miller and Dame Lillard? By analyzing the impact of an NBA legend who has been consistently underestimated, we learn how he changed the game and how his impact includes lessons that transcend the dimensions of a basketball court.

If you like what your hearing, subscribe wherever you get your podcasts. And visit us at RunningItBack.fm for all the best lessons to be learned from the world of sports.

Tiger Wins the 2019 Masters

We run it back to Tiger Woods’ heroic return to greatness culminating in his remarkable win in the 2019 Masters Tournament. Tarlin shares his personal connection to Tiger over the years as we talk about his impact on sports and culture through the years. What began with his epic win at the 1998 Masters started a run of unequaled dominance until things took a turn in 2009 that required a different kind of excellence and mettle that ultimately led to triumph in 2019 and now is once again fraught in light of his recent car accident in February of 2021.

Tarlin concludes with a heartfelt Ode to Tiger that you won’t want to miss.

If you like what you’re hearing subscribe to Running It Back wherever you get your podcasts and check us out at RunningItBack.fm

Serena the GOAT

On the heels of Naomi Osaka’s victory in the 2021 Australian Open, Tarlin and Mike spend some time reflecting on the legend and the legacy of Serena Williams. What lessons can be learned from Serena’s career? How does she stack up versus other greats in Women’s Tennis and against other athletes overall?

We talk about her broader cultural impact beyond the court and conclude that Serena belongs on our Mount Rushmore ahead of Tom Brady, Martina Navritalova, and more.

If you like what you’re hearing, check us out at RunningItBack.fm and subscribe to Running It Back wherever you get your podcasts.

The Rooney Rule and Minority Head Coaches in the NFL

Tarlin and Mike are back to kick off 2021 with a dive into the history and relevance of the “Rooney Rule” which was established in 2003 to ensure that diverse candidates got interviews for open Head Coaching positions. We refer to the research of CC Dubois from the 2017 MIT Sloan Conference where she established a 19-21% positive impact on the diversity of NFL Coaching hires due to the Rooney Rule.

Recent trends in Head Coaching and GM hires in the NFL have brought this back into focus as we now have reverted close to 2003 levels with top Offensive Coordinators like Eric Bienemy and Byron Leftwich somehow being passed over for recent head coach openings. Do “soft” affirmative action practice like the Rooney Rule work? What can we learn from Tony Dungy’s example? What lessons can we apply to the broader world of work and diversity, equity, and inclusion based on what we’re seeing in the NFL?

We explore all of this and touch on the related challenges around the perception of black quarterbacks over the years on our latest episode.

If you like what you’re hearing, follow us at RunningItBack.fm and subscribe wherever you get your podcasts.

Running It Back 2020 Year In Review

Mike and Tarlin look back on the year that was 2020 in this special wrap-up edition of Running It Back. We look back at our Origin Story of launching the show amid the tumult of the first wave of the pandemic in the US before diving into a rundown of the most downloaded shows since we launched in the Fall.

What’s our most downloaded show so far and what have will we take with us into 2021 and beyond? Hear our thoughts and aspirations as we reflect on an incredible run of shows about lessons learned from sports as we look ahead to our next run of shows heading into 2021!

Thanks so much for listening. If you like what you’re hearing, follow us at runningitback.fm and wherever you listen to podcasts.

Here’s to an amazing New Year!