Articles

Click here for an archive of my online columns and features, including coverage of the 2003-2015 summer and winter X Games and the 2006-2014 summer and winter Olympic Games for ESPN.com, xgames.com, espnW.com, ESPN Radio and X Games podcast.

Woman of Steel … For Luci Romberg, the world’s leading female freerunner, the urban environment is her playground. Read here. (April 2016, for AM Magazine)

ACTION SPORTS, OLYMPICS, ENTERPRISE FEATURES  IN ESPN THE MAGAZINE …

Dave Mirra: A Hero’s Death and CTE’s Arrival — Read here. (ESPN The Magazine cover story, June 6, 2016)

Gus Kenworthy’s Next Bold Move — Coming Out. Read here. (ESPN The Magazine cover story, November 9, 2015)

The making of John John Florence’s View From A Blue Moon. Read here. (ESPN.com for ETM, October 23, 2015)

Clearing the Board: Snowboarder Kelly Clark hopes to keep her win streak alive and qualify for her fourth Olympics in 2014. Read here. (ESPN The Magazine, February 2013)

NEXT: Snowboarder Mark McMorris. Read here. (ESPN The Magazine, December 25, 2012)

Base Jumpers: Bikes Over Baghdad Takes Over the Middle East. Read here. (ESPN The Magazine, December 14, 2012)

Hollywood Ending: BMXer Kurt Yaeger Has A New Role and Life on TV. Read here. (ESPN The Magazine, November 14, 2012)

Perfection Isn’t Perfect: In FMX, the Perfection vs. Progression debate rages on. Read here. (ESPN The Magazine, June 12, 2012)

Riding the Stock Market: James Stewart is out to prove he doesn’t need a factory ride to win a title. Read here. (ESPN The Magazine, April 6, 2012)

The Moment: Snowboarder Danny Davis learns to downshift. Read here. (ESPN The Magazine, January 28, 2011)

Stars Next Door: Ryan Dungey is the “NEXT” face of Supercross. Read here. (ESPN The Magazine, Dec. 10, 2010)

Unforgettable Lines: For big-mountain snowboarding icon Jeremy Jones, the thrill is in the climb. Read here. (ESPN The Magazine, Nov. 27, 2010)

The Power of Belief: Can a bracelet really make an athlete perform better? Read here.(ESPN The Magazine, Body Issue, October 15, 2010)

Re-Riding History: Legends and loved ones fill in the blanks for BMXer Anthony Napolitan. Read here. (ESPN The Magazine, X Games Preview cover story, July 14, 2010)

How Soccer Explains the Sports World: From Steve Nash to Dwight Freeney, soccer shaped their sports careers. Read here. (ESPN The Magazine, June 30, 2010)

The Art of the Sale: In the NBA, the best performances come just before the ref’s whistle. Read here. (ESPN The Magazine, May 5, 2010)

“It’s A Wonderful, Horrible Feeling:” Shaun White is the hottest thing on snow. But my, how he’s changed. Read here. (ESPN The Magazine, Winter Olympic Preview, Feb. 12, 2010)

The Long and The Short of It: Simon Dumont is the smallest guy in freeskiing, but he goes bigger than anyone in the sport. That actually makes a lot of sense. Read here.(ESPN The Magazine, cover story, January 19, 2010)

Silence is Golden: Crowds love Ashley Fiolek. Only thing is, she can’t hear them roar.Read here. (ESPN The Magazine, June 15, 2009)

Baby On Board: IndyCar champ Scott Dixon is having a baby. What does that mean for his title defense? According to lure, it might slow him down. Read here. (ESPN The Magazine, May 27, 2009)

Flashback: Tony Hawk remembers high school. Read here. (ESPN RISE, September 22, 2009)

No One On The Corner Has Swagger Like Chaz: Teenagers want to be him. Tour vets want to beat him. What makes 15-year-old skateboarder so dang enviable? Image is everything. Read here. (EXPN Magazine, Fall 2009)

Cutting it close: An ode to ACL surgery. Read here. (ESPN The Magazine, October 2, 2009)

For Sale By Owner: How much should female athletes reveal in the name of self-promotion? Read here. (ESPN The Magazine, The Body Issue, Oct. 9, 2009)

Mind Matters: For Olympic gold medalist Shaun Johnson, her mind is what matters most. Read here. (ESPN’s GIRL magazine, Fall 2009)

In His Element – Surfer Clay Marzo is a prodigy in the water. It’s on land that he struggles to keep up. Read Here. (ESPN The Magazine, September 21, 2009)

WORLD RECORD FMXer ROBBIE MADISON’S obsession is life-long. (ESPN.com, December, 2008) READ HERE.

THE WRITER’S NOTEBOOK: Kevin Pearce. (ESPN.com, January, 2009) READ HERE.

THIS IS NOT SHAUN WHITE: But Kevin Pearce May Be Just As Good. (ESPN The Magazine, January, 2009) READ HERE.

THREE WEEKS IN BEIJING: Follow the 2008 Summer Olympics along with me. READ HERE.

For Love or the Game: Who knows Dave Mirra best … his wife Lauren, or good friend Ken Block? (ESPNTHEMAG.COM / ESPN2 TV, August 2, 2008) READ HERE

X GAMES PREVIEW: Who is BMXer Kevin Robinson? Depends on Who You Ask. (ESPN The Magazine, July 2008) READ HERE

Olympics: SET TO LAUNCH – BMXer Donny Robinson is ready for Beijing. Is the world ready for him? (ESPN The Magazine, July 2008) READ HERE

Olympics: Olympic BMX medal hopeful Mike Day rides his newfound work ethic onto the U.S. team. (ESPN.com, July 11, 2008) READ HERE

Olympics: The top men and women to watch at Olympic Gymnastics Trials in Philadelphia. (ESPN.com, June 19, 2008)

Olympics: The men and women to watch at Olympic Gymnastics Trials in Philadelphia. (ESPN.com, June 19, 2008)

Break Point – First. Youngest. Next. Those labels have defined 15-year-old Carissa Moore’s nascent career. Now she’s being prepped to transcend surfing. At least that’s the plan. Read PDF

My Brothers’ Keeper – Gang members. Thugs. Murderers. The Bra Boys have heard all the labels. But in a powerful new documentary, Koby and Sunny Abberton show why the labels “surfer” and “brother” are the ones that really matter. Read PDF

No Time For Never – After a paralyzing auto accident, rising motocross racer Matt Bigos was told he would never walk again. Good thing he didn’t listen. Men’s Fitness (March 2008) Read HERE

The Gretchen Bleiler Show – The greatest show in snow sports heads to Aspen, hometown of this U.S. halfpipe hero. ESPN The Magazine (January 28, 1008) Read PDF –Check out the Cover

Olympics: Making the U.S. marathon team will be an uphill battle. (November 19, 2007)

The Power of Glove – Think Matt and Danny Kass are just money-hungry snowboarders turned gear-hawking suits? Try again. (January 29, 2007)

World surfing champion Sofia Mulanovich is ready for her close-up. Sort of. EXPN Magazine (Spring 2006 cover story) Read (PDF)

Fall Guy – First person: Mat Hoffman. The godfather of BMX is the toughest guy in sports. And we’ll prove it. ESPN The Magazine (August 1, 2005 cover story) Read (PDF)

Play At Your Own Risk – Two days in freestyle motocross icon Travis Pastrana’s backyard playground. ESPN The Magazine (July 31, 2006) Read (PDF)

It Takes More to Fire Us Up – Today’s fan expects more. One freestyle motocross contest is answering their prayers. ESPN The Magazine (December 18, 2006) Read (PDF)

James Stewart: In the Crosshairs – Stewart’s ready to take over his sport. But first, he needs you to remember his name. ESPN The Magazine Read (PDF)

Heavy Water – Many things come to mind when most people think of Guantanamo Bay. Wakeboarding is usually not one of them. ESPN The Magazine (May 7, 2007) Read (PDF)

The Calm Before …The Swarm – Gold medalist Hannah Teter takes a two-day spinner through the Big Apple, proving there’s no rest for the best. (March 13, 2006)

Flippin’ Amazing -Travis Pastrana pulled off the greatest trick in action sports history. But his decision to go for the double backflip was almost thwarted by a game of rock-paper-scissors. ESPN The Magazine (July 31, 2007) Read (PDF)

If you think F-1 drivers fly, you haven’t seen the Red Bull Air Race World Series. ESPN The Magazine (October 9, 2006) Read (PDF)

Cold Fusion – Ten of NASCAR’s best take the Bo-dyn Bobsled Challenge. ESPN.com (January 2006) Read

Hot Pursuits – One day in the lives of five X Games athletes. Try to keep up.
EXPN.com (July 2004) Read

 

COLLEGE FOOTBALL, NFL FEATURES FOR ESPN THE MAGAZINE …

Lotus Pose on Two: The Seattle Seahawks believe their unconventional ways will win them a Super Bowl. Read here. (ESPN The Magazine cover story, Aug. 21, 2013)

Slot Machines: Top playmakers don’t always line up wide. Read here. (ESPN The Magazine, October 29, 2012)

Mister Misunderstood: Former ASU linebacker Vontaze Burfict is fighting perception and a falling draft stock. Read here. (ESPN The Magazine, April 30, 2012)

Goals to Go: Trent Richardson makes good on his pre-season goals. Read here. (ESPN The Magazine, February 6, 2012)

Dirty Is In the Eye of the Beholder: HOFers use a different word to explain Ndamukong Suh. Read here. (ESPN The Magazine, January 23, 2012)

Breaking Down the 2012 BCS Bowls. Read here. (ESPN The Magazine, December 12, 2011)

Happy Dawgs: Georgia’s 10-2 turnaround has as much to do with its summer reading list as its on-field success. Read here. (ESPN The Magazine, December 12, 2011)

Life As A Backup Quarterback: Todd Collins personifies the position. Read here. (ESPN The Magazine, Nov. 15, 2010)

Tough to Bring Down: Mark Ingram has more pressure than any player in the nation. So why can’t he stop smiling? Read here. (ESPN The Magazine, Aug. 24, 2010)

How’s My Driving: Texas QB Colt McCoy and Bama QB Greg McElroy explained by their signature game-winning drives. Read Here. (ESPN The Magazine, BCS Preview, December 31, 2009)

Colt Hero – Five Longhorn fans make a pretty strong case Colt McCoy is superhuman.Read Here. (ESPN The Magazine, cover story, August 24, 2009)

Reggie Goes to Red Bull: The worlds of action and mainstream sports are colliding. (ESPN.com, February 2009) Read Here.

It’s In the Stars: Georgia fans finally get their wish in Knowshon Moreno. Read here. (ESPN The Magazine cover story, August 2008)

I profile the Mag’s 2008 NEXT athlete of the year, Matt Ryan. (ESPN The Magazine, cover story.) Read here.

Kings For A Day – Big-name draft prospects aren’t the only players who deserve royal treatment. Read PDF

This Way To The Draft – We follow three QBs from season’s end to draft day. My assignment: USC QB John David Booy.  Fourth installmentThird installmentSecond InstallmentFirst Installment

True Enough: Think you know Eagles WR Kevin Curtis? Think again.

Just Let it Go – Fear of failure made Oregon QB Dennis Dixon question his skills. But a summer spent roaming minor league outfields taught him that failure is part of the game. ESPN The Magazine (November 5, 2007) Read PDF

The Madden Jinx – Nothing I’ve written (read: made up) has been written about more than my discovery of The Madden Jinx. (August 19, 2002)

That’s A Stretch – The Cincinnati Bengals find a winning formation by channeling their inner yogis. ESPN The Magazine (May 24, 2004) Read (PDF)

My Super Blog – An XL Steelers fan’s thoughts from the 2006 Super Bowl. ESPN.com (February 7, 2006) Read

Pinball Wizards – Key playmakers to watch in the Arena Football League this season.ESPN The Magazine (April 9, 2007) Read (PDF)

First Person: Matt Leinart – I help Matt search for the answer to a question that’s plagued him since dropping in the draft: Why? ESPN The Magazine (June 18, 2007 cover story) Read (PDF)

Alligator Arms – One’s on his way out. One’s on his way up. But University of Florida quarterbacks Chris Leak and Tim Tebow are both on their way to a national title. ESPN The Magazine (December 4, 2006) Read (PDF)

 

espnW.COM COLUMNS AND FEATURES … 

Mothers, Daughters, Sisters and Veterans – How these incredible eight women are using sports and fitness to overcome loss and transition into civilian life.  Read here. (ESPNW.com, Nov. 11, 2015)

How Chrissie Beavis and I won One of the World’s Toughest Rally Races. Read here. (ESPNW.com, June 3, 2015)

After the Seven Summits: The story of seven Nepali women. Read here. (ESPNW.com, May 28, 2015)

Impact 25: Thank you, Lauren Hill. Read here. (ESPNW.com, April 10, 2015)

An Unforgettable Afternoon for Lauren Hill. Read here. (ESPNW.com, Nov. 5, 2014)

Take it from a former college cheerleader and coach: Cheerleading is not a Sport. Read here. (ESPNW.com, July 7, 2014)

Donald Sterling and that “other” ism: Most of the commentary about Sterling misses the sexism that underpins the entire scandal.Read here. (ESPNW.com, April 15, 2014)

More to Olympic final than Jacobellis’ fall. Read here. (ESPNW.com, Sochi Olympics, Feb. 16, 2014)

Remembering Sarah Burke: How the freeskiing pioneer would want to be remembered. Read here. (ESPNW, Jan. 20, 2012)

 

ACTION SPORTS COLUMNS/FEATURES FOR ESPN.COM …

Back in the Water: Five-time world surfing champ Stephanie Gilmore talks about her upcoming film and her comeback from a violent attack in 2010. STORY and TV PIECE. Check them out here. (XGAMES.com/ABC, July 25, 2014)

Kurt Caselli’s Last Ride: While on assignment shadowing the Red Bull KTM team at this year’s Baja 1000, I witnessed the tragic death of the team’s captain. But how did it happen? And who was to blame? Read here. (XGAMES.com, Dec. 21, 2013)

Bob Burnquist’s Brazil: The skateboard legend returns home to compete in X Games Foz do Iguacu. Read here. (xgames.com, April 10, 2013)

Shaun White’s Next Act: Acting. Read here. (ESPN.com, March 1, 2011)

Fantasy Snowboarding: Ten of the best riders in the world help create the perfect run. Read here. (ESPN.com, Jan. 28, 2011)

A Different Rhythm: Ben Harper and Dhani Harrison are musicians with a passion for skateboarding. Read here. (ESPN.com, Dec. 27, 2010)

Travis Pastrana 3.0: The biggest name in action sports is having a midlife crisis. Read here. (ESPN.com, Dec. 3, 2009)

And Then There Were Three: Snowboarder Scotty Lago and the Mitrani brothers are the last Frends standing. Read here. (ESPN.com, Jan 22, 2010)

Leap Year: Travis Pastrana sets a world distance record jumping his rally car live on ESPN on New Year’s Eve. Read here. (ESPN.com, January 1, 2010)

Five-Ring Circus: Click here to read my ESPN.com Olympic snowboarding blog leading up to the Games in Vancouver.

Uncorked: Breaking down the most hyped snowboard halfpipe trick of the Olympic year.Read here. (ESPN.com, September 22, 2009)

Check out my weekly ESPN The Magazine action sports blog. READ HERE.

Spring Fling: 2006 contest season preview, plus Drop-Ins. ESPN The Magazine (May 22, 2006)Read (PDF)

Extreme Takeover: the X Games put an extreme twist on cross promotion, plus Drop-Ins. (August 14, 2006) )

Future Shockers: predicting the headlines of 2007, plus Drop-Ins. ESPN The Magazine(November 20, 2006) Read (PDF)

Shred Cred – Snowboard journalists are held to a higher standard. Wanna write about the riders? Then learn to ride. EXPN.com (March 22, 2005) Read

Blue Crush – The slopes are supposed to be an escape from the buzz of day-to-day life. So why are we trying to escape the slopes? EXPN.com (March 2, 2005) Read

12 Hours at the U.S. Open of Snowboarding -Because 24 is just overkill. EXPN.com (March 21, 2005) Read