Sports

Alejandro Carrasco

 

It's game time. On this edition of Talk of Iowa, we hear stories of sportsmanship and athleticism. From playing basketball on the Nigerian national team, to running and losing the race of a lifetime, Iowans share their best sports stories.

This show was recorded at a recent event sponsored by Iowa Watch: The Iowa Center for Public Affairs Journalism and Iowa Public Radio at Merge in downtown Iowa City. 

 

From ice skating to ultimate frisbee, the new children's book "Amazing Iowa Athletes" highlights both prominent and little-known Iowa athletes who have accomplished extraordinary feats. 

Loucious Thomas / Flickr

Throughout the last five years of his career as a running back in the NFL, Marshawn Lynch, or "Beast Mode," disengaged with the press and embraced silence as a form of protest. He became known for sitting during the national anthem and pushing back against questions from the news media.

A new documentary, "Lynch: A History," gives insight into what the all-American, all-pro, Super Bowl champion was communicating through silence. 

he honor was to mark King’s plans to donate more than $1 million to charity after his decision to display a hand-written sign before the Sept. 14 Iowa State-Iowa football game seeking money for beer prompted an overwhelming number of donations.
David Pitt / AP

 

Carson King, 24, has raised over $1 million for charity and a wave of controversy after going viral with a sign requesting beer money at the Cyclone-Hawkeye game on Sept. 14. Media Ethicist and Iowa State University Professor Michael Bugega joins this 'News Buzz' edition of River to River to give his perspective on the investigation of Carson's past tweets by The Des Moines Register and the following backlash. 

Rob Dillard

Investigators at Iowa State University say they have been unable to substantiate allegations that Cyclone fans physically assaulted members of the University of Iowa band following the annual Cy-Hawk football game.

ISU officials say no witnesses have come forward to confirm the charges.

Bridget Berglund

Title IX became law in 1972. As a result any school that receives any federal money is required to provide fair and equal treatment of the sexes in all areas, including sports. Change didn’t happen all at once, but during the 1970s girls who had been forced to watch from the sidelines started to have real opportunities to join teams and compete. Melissa Isaacson was one of those girls.

Iowa National Guard / The National Guard

The Iowa National Guard has been added to a congressional investigation involving President Donald Trump's Turnberry resort.

Dan Rolling / Dan Rolling Photography

It's not uncommon for runners to carefully monitor their diet and health as they train for a long race, but for Morgan Russell, who is training for the New York Marathon, the stakes are higher. She has type -1 diabetes, and managing her blood sugar is an integral part of her everyday life, especially during her intense workouts. 

Ben Godar / Birth of the Cy-Hawk: A Documentary

When Iowa and Iowa State renewed their football rivalry in 1977, a group of ordinary guys conceived and created the trophy they would call “the Cy-Hawk.” A new documentary, Birth of the Cy-Hawk, tells this unique, Iowa story.

Andreas Aulin / Flickr

Schools are back in session and the fall sports season is underway. We all have heard the horror stories of angry parents on the stands yelling at the coach, the referee, other parents and even student athletes. Last week, the Iowa High School Athletic Association released a statement addressing parent and adult fan behavior at sporting events. They give six ways to behave at games for parents and fans, including “act their age.” Read the IHSAA's full statement here

MLB

It has been 30 years since the movie Field of Dreams was on the big screen. A story about an Iowa farmer who mows down his corn and builds a baseball diamond on his land after hearing a mysterious voice.

Although this movie is a fantasy-drama, Major League Baseball announced that the Chicago White Sox and the New York Yankees would be playing a game at the beloved film site in Dyersville, Iowa. This event will be the first Major League game ever held in the State of Iowa.

Matthew Hayward / NBC

It has been a great year for Iowa ninjas, at least five Iowans competed on NBC's  American Ninja Warrior.  Three athletes who train at Ninja U, an American Ninja Warrior gym in Cedar Falls, qualified for this year's competition. Christi Marie is a PE teacher in Waterloo who made it to the second round of the competition. Jackson Twait, a student at the University of Northern Iowa, also made it to the second round of competition and Scott Behrends, co-owner of Ninja U, will appear in the finals filmed in Las Vegas.

Flickr / Carl T. Bergstrom

The top finishers at Quarter Horse races this weekend will have to give up a hair or two to show they were racing clean. The new protocol at Prairie Meadows in Altoona is an attempt to rid the industry of performance enhancing drugs.

Workers at Prairie Meadows in Altoona, Iowa, take the first bets at the casino's new sportsbook.
Grant Gerlock / IPR

Iowa is officially open for business for sports betting. Several casinos across the state took their first wagers Thursday, making Iowa the 11th state in the U.S. to officially legalize gambling on sports.

The entrance to Lakeside Casino near Osceola, Iowa.
Grant Gerlock / IPR

Classic hits play over the speakers on the casino floor at Lakeside Casino near Osceola, in southern Iowa. Players sit at slot machines with names like Buffalo Grand, Lightning Link and Wild Cougar. The games erupt with lights and alarms.

Down an escalator and beyond the bar (and more slot machines) is the corner of the casino being renovated into a sportsbook, a betting parlor dedicated to wagering on sports.

Rick Brewer / IPR

On this "news buzz" edition of River to River, Donnelle Eller of the Des Moines Register offers an update on the impact of the China trade war on agriculture and farmers, Peggy Huppert of NAMI Iowa speaks about the stigma surrounding mass shootings and mental illness and IPR's Western Iowa Reporter Katie Peikes speaks about JD Scholten's announcement to run for Iowa's 4th congressional district seat.

IAHilltopper / Flickr

The Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission recently approved the final rules for betting on professional, college and fantasy sports contests.  On Aug. 15 at noon, legal sports wagering will be allowed in-person and through a moblie app.

Iowa Racing and Gaming commissioner Julie Andres moves to approve a casino's sports betting license at a meeting in West Des Moines.
Grant Gerlock / IPR

Iowa casinos are making preparations to take their first wagers on sporting events starting at noon on Aug. 15. The Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission approved the final rules for sports gambling at its meeting Tuesday. The commission also gave initial approval to 18 casinos that had applied for sports gambling licenses.

AP

The city of Toronto and the nation of Canada have reason for celebration with the Raptors winning their first NBA championship this year, and so does Iowa. Raptors head coach Nick Nurse is a Carroll native who worked his way to the top of the game, and now he has a ring to show for it.

Courtesy of Jeff Schmid

At the age of 50, Jeff Schmid wasn't looking for a breakthrough as a professional golfer, but he recently earned his way into two major PGA tournaments.

Penguin Books

Wright Thompson has profiled some of the greatest athletes of all time as a senior writer for  ESPN, studying what drives them, their complicated relationships, and the sacrifices made to achieve their dreams. On this hour of Talk of Iowa, host Charity Nebbe talks with Thompson about his latest book, "The Cost of These Dreams: Sports Stories and other Serious Business" .

iowa capitol
John Pemble/IPR file

Updated Tuesday, April 23, 2019 at 10:50 a.m.

Iowans 21 and over could soon legally place bets on professional and college sports under a bill that lawmakers sent to the governor Monday evening.

Thomas Rydberg

This conversation originally aired on June 28, 2017.

Author Terry McDermott grew up in Cascade, Iowa with a passion for baseball instilled by his father. Inspired by Seattle Mariners’ Felix Hernandez’s perfectly pitched game in 2012, McDermott wrote his latest book Off Speed: Baseball, Pitching and the Art of Deception. 

Courtesy of the Gable Family

This interview originally aired on July 5, 2017.

Olympic gold medalist Dan Gable has been a household name in Iowa for decades. After bringing home three state wrestling championships in high school, he went on to the 1972 Munich Olympics, where he successfully wrestled without losing a single point. He famously coached the University of Iowa team to win 15 NCAA titles before retiring after the 1997 season. Since then he has continued to coach and has been actively working to keep Olympic and collegiate wrestling alive and thriving.

Chris Carlson/AP

Figure skating pair Ashley Cain and Timothy LeDuc turned heads with their gold medal-winning routine at the U.S. Figure Skating Championship in Detroit earlier this year, marking their formal comeback after a terrifying fall left Cain hospitalized with a concussion, and the team's skating future in jeopardy. 

On this Talk of Iowa, host Charity Nebbe talks with Cain and LeDuc about their comback, goals, and passions.

John Pemble/IPR file

In May, the U.S. Supreme Court handed down a decision that allows states to legalize, tax and regulate sports betting. Until then, Nevada was the only state where fans could legally put bets on games and point spreads. Eight states have now legalized sports betting.

Several proposals that would legalize sports betting in Iowa are set to get a first hearing at the statehouse Wednesday, and lawmakers will hear from numerous competing interests.

Alternative Baseball Organization via facebook

A baseball league for players with autism or other special needs is recruiting a team in Cedar Rapids. After organizing players across the country, the nationwide organization Alternative Baseball is establishing its first team in the state of Iowa.  

Courtesy of University of Okoboji Winter Games / https://uofowintergames.com/gallery-2/2018-gallery/

The annual University of Okoboji Winter Games kicks off Thursday.

Chris Hsia via flickr creative commons

High schoolers from across the state will compete in this weekend’s girls only wrestling state championship, which is being called the first of its kind. State athletic officials say the competition is a step towards ultimately getting the sport officially recognized.

Matt Duboff / flickr

Last winter the AAU hosted a girls wrestling tournament at Wells Fargo Arena in Des Moines. It was the first ever hosted in Iowa. This year, the AAU is hosting another all girls tournament on February 24. The Iowa Coaches and Officials Association is also hosting a girls state tournament on Janury 19 in Waverly. 

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