The Oberlin Review

Huskies’ Dominance Hurts Competition, Interest in Women’s Basketball

Jack Brewster, Columnist

February 17, 2017

Filed under SPORTS, Sports Column

The University of Connecticut Huskies cemented the longest winning streak in the history of NCAA women’s basketball Monday night with a landmark 65–55 win over the University of South Carolina. The Huskies have broken the previous win streak record three times. This spring, they will vie for their fifth straight NCAA championship, which would be their 11th title since 2000. The Huskies are as close to a dynasty as it gets. But while their current win streak and dominance in recent years is fantastic for their fan base, the Huskies’ supremacy is damaging NCAA women’s basketball. Dynasties are only healthy for the growth of a sport up to a point. The Huskies are winning so often and by so much that they are ...

Cool or Drool: NBA Takes on Twitter

Dan Bisno, Columnist

February 10, 2017

Filed under SPORTS, Sports Column

Social media reveals unfiltered opinions and the true personalities of our favorite players in a way that interviews and journalistic pieces cannot. Current Los Angeles Clippers point guard Jamaal Crawford once inspiringly took to Twitter to write, “Thinking too much is the gift and the curse.” Filtered or unfiltered? Using the NBA as a case study, we can examine the significant impact of social media on a professional sports league. In 2009, the NBA introduced its notorious social media fine, which coincided with the largest increase in tweets of any year. Twitter is free for the masses, but to NBA stars, it costs at least a $25,000 subscription per year if they expect to get fined. The NBA imposes social...

Athletes Voice Dissent with New Administration

Jack Brewster, Columnist

February 3, 2017

Filed under SPORTS, Sports Column

Donald Trump’s controversial executive orders — most notably his refugee and majority Muslim-country-travel ban imposed Jan. 27 — have incited protests from all corners of the country and from every race, gender and religion. Hollywood and Broadway stars, executives of major corporations and countless politicians on both sides of the aisle have already been highly critical of Trump’s actions early in his presidency. A growing number of athletes have also begun speaking out against Trump during the election, persistently dissenting during the first days of his presidency. Recently, more and more professional athletes have worked to inspire social change both on and off the field. If dissent among athletes continues...

Cool or Drool: MLB’s New Luxury Tax Levels Playing Field

Dan Bisno, Columnist

December 9, 2016

Filed under SPORTS, Sports Column

Sports fans always want to believe that their team has the same shot at winning as any other. While we all know “fairness” is not clear cut, perhaps no factor influences the outcomes of professional sports leagues more than the politics of player compensation. While most leagues have shifted toward a salary cap or restricted payroll, MLB continues to host massive payroll differentials between teams of varied financial capabilities. The league’s new contract-bargaining agreement was reached on Nov. 30, and while it will not include the long-awaited salary cap when it takes effect in 2017, it includes a stronger luxury tax that should level the financial playing field. In 2016, teams were allowed to pay their...

Castro Stunted Cuban Baseball Growth

Jack Brewster, Columnist

December 2, 2016

Filed under SPORTS, Sports Column

Former Cuban leader Fidel Castro, one of the most prominent and controversial leaders of the past century, died last Friday at the age of 90. For all the things Castro believed in that stood in opposition to the U.S., there was always one glaring irony — Castro loved our national pastime: baseball. The Cuban leader was a frequent attendee of games around Cuba and adored playing baseball as well. There are many photos of Castro in full baseball uniform, elated to be on the diamond. As The New York Times noted in their obituary for Castro Friday, only five days after the leader rose to power in 1959, he played a game with his fellow revolutionaries. The team was named Los Barbudos — the Bearded Ones — after Ca...

Cool or Drool: Romo’s Days in Dallas Numbered

Dan Bisno, Columnist

November 18, 2016

Filed under SPORTS, Sports Column

Editor’s Note: This article contains references to domestic violence. Many of the 32 teams in the NFL are struggling to fill the quarterback position. While teams like the San Francisco 49ers and Cleveland Browns cycle through their assortment of sub-par passers and NFL busts like Tim Tebow, who moved on to pursue a career in baseball, the Cowboys are mischievously stockpiling quarterbacks in Dallas. Since week one of the NFL season, rookie quarterback Dak Prescott has led the Dallas Cowboys to an NFC-leading 8–1 start, while famed backups Tony Romo and Mark Sanchez remain benched. Many Cowboys fans had high hopes for Romo this season, but he was sidelined after fracturing his vertebrae at the end of the NFL pre...

Concussions Underscore Football’s Safety Issues

Jack Brewster, Columnist

November 11, 2016

Filed under SPORTS, Sports Column

Nebraska quarterback Tommy Armstrong Jr. receives the snap, drops back, scans left and right and is immediately under pressure. Two Ohio State University defensive linemen are closing in fast. Armstrong abandons the pocket and bolts for an opening in the throng of gargantuan bodies before him. He gets the first down and keeps running. But before he can safely run out of bounds, Ohio State safety Malik Hooker catapults himself into Armstrong’s legs, upending the quarterback. He flies through the air and crashes to the ground, his head taking the brunt of the force as his neck snaps backwards. Armstrong, a catalyst for a struggling Nebraska offense just seconds before, lays motionless on the ground, unconscious. Moments...

Cool or Drool: 49ers Start Kaepernick Amidst Continued Protest

Dan Bisno, Columnist

November 4, 2016

Filed under SPORTS, Sports Column

The San Francisco 49ers lost four games with quarterback Blaine Gabbert at the helm before they decided to return Colin Kaepernick — the player at the center of one of the biggest political demonstrations in the recent history of American sports — to his starting quarterback position. Just four years after winning the National Football Conference under Kaepernick’s leadership and barely losing in the Super Bowl, the 49ers currently sit at a tie for last place in the entire NFC with an embarrassing 1–6 record. This is largely due to Gabbert’s subpar performance early in the season, which left many fans wondering why Head Coach Chip Kelly waited so long to return Kaepernick. At this point, you could have...

From Curses to Recluses: World Series Features Captivating Characters

Jack Brewster, Columnist

October 28, 2016

Filed under SPORTS, Sports Column

Editor’s Note: The Oberlin Review’s policy is to avoid calling the Cleveland baseball team by its name due to its derogatory nature and racist caricature. Towards the end of the beloved baseball movie Field of Dreams, Terence Mann, played by actor James Earl Jones, delivers a poignant soliloquy on the game’s enduring appeal. “The one constant through all the years, Ray, has been baseball,” intones Jones in his signature baritone. “America has rolled by like an army of steamrollers. It's been erased like a blackboard, rebuilt and erased again. But baseball has marked the time. This field, this game, is a part of our past, Ray.” Baseball fans everywhere recite this quote the way literature scholar...

Cool or Drool: Cavaliers Give Championship Ring to David Blatt

Dan Bisno, Columnist

September 23, 2016

Filed under SPORTS, Sports Column

Cleveland Cavaliers fans are still enjoying the high from the end of the city’s 52-year championship drought. But one crucial member of the championship run still cannot quite stomach the win: former Head Coach David Blatt. The Cavs, pretending that Blatt is not still fuming at the sight of anything with the word Cleveland on it, just announced that they will give him a championship ring at the end of October — less than one year after firing him in one of the most bizarre coaching changes in NBA history. Blatt was brought on as the head coach for the 2014–15 season after the Cavaliers suffered a disappointing 33–49 record fronted by point guard Kyrie Irving. Shortly after Blatt was hired, the Cavaliers...

America’s Pastime Will Never Forget Sept. 11

September 16, 2016

Filed under SPORTS, Sports Column

It was 15 years ago last Sunday that New York City experienced an event so horrific it realized the impossible — it stopped time in the city that never sleeps. When two commercial airplanes, hijacked by terrorists, were deliberately crashed into the World Trade Center’s iconic towers, New York City, as we know it, vanished. A city notorious for high-speed living, hustle and bustle and a seemingly endless supply of human energy became eerily quiet in the days following Sept. 11. Wall Street’s opening bell didn’t toll. Subways didn’t run. Streets normally crowded by millions occupied by the push and shove of daily urban life became unrecognizably empty. And over ten long and painful days, no professional sports...

Saying Farewell to Scully

September 2, 2016

Filed under Sports Column

Baseball fans first heard the soothing sound of sportscaster Vin Scully’s voice reverberating over the airwaves during the summer of 1950. That year, the United States’ population was less than half of what it is now. Hawaii and Alaska weren’t states. Television was black and white. And the Dodgers played their games at Ebbets Field in Brooklyn, NY, not among the glitz and glamour of Los Angeles. Scully was just 22 years old. Just three years later, he would go on to broadcast the 1953 World Series. Over 66 seasons, Scully called some of the greatest games in history. He had a front row seat to Dodger greats like Sandy Koufax and Clayton Kershaw. At age 88, however, Scully has decided that when the Dodgers...

Established 1874.