Sports Illustrated through the years

Who here has not enjoyed the media giant that is Sports Illustrated? That magazine that has captured the hearts of the sports nation, and is such a media giant that it has its own cult following? Everyone knows how huge Sports Illustrated is in the world of sports, and it got me to thinking how old and how long has this great publication been around? Feast your eyes on the above picture which clearly states it’s the “First Issue”.  It’s Eddie Mathews, Baseball, Milwaukee Braves photographed by: Mark Kauffman, and the year was 1954. Which means I’m even older than the Super Bowl and Sports Illustrated? Sheesh!

But it got me to thinking back to some of the more memorable covers that comes to mind.

How about this for irony? One of the most shocking news stories of the century was in November of 1963 when the tragedy of the assassination of President Kennedy in Dallas Texas. The very next month, the December issue of SI had this magazine cover of Roger Staubach, the future Hall of Fame Quarterback of the Dallas Cowboys.

 Some of the SI covers were comical and unforgettable, like this cover from 1970. This photo reminded me of Mad Magazine’s Alfred E. Newman.

 And who could forget the very first Dallas Cowboys Super Bowl win and the cover of SI on that day?

And then there was/is the whole SI Jinx Theory:

Millions of superstitious readers — and many athletes — believe that an appearance on Sports Illustrated’s cover is the kiss of death. But is there really such a thing as the SI Jinx? In this week’s issue, senior writer Alexander Wolff attempts to answer that very question. Read about Wolff’s experience working on the story.


  A day after this cover appearance Anna Kournikova is bounced from the French Open in the second round, the earliest she has exited a Grand Slam in three years.  
  After Week 1, Chargers quarterback Ryan Leaf has gone 17 for 39 with three interceptions. He throws seven more interceptions than touchdowns for the season.

  Two games after his cover appearance the Rams’ Kurt Warner breaks his pinkie and, for the first time since he won the job, is sidelined, missing his next five games.  
  Minnesota quarterback Daunte Culpepper wants to be “The Greatest Ever!” but he’s not yet great enough to prevent the Vikings from losing its next (and final) three regular season games.

  Amani Toomer and the Giants, featured after a rout of the Vikings in the NFC title game, lose 31-7 to the Ravens in the Super Bowl.  
  Days after Nomar Garciaparra of the Boston Red Sox appeared on SI’s cover, it was announced that he had split a tendon in his right wrist.

  The Hornets, appearing with a 3-2 lead on the Bucks in the second round of the playoffs, lose the next two games and the series.  
  Oregon State, SI’s preseason college football No. 1, lost 44-24 to Fresno State in its opener

So all-in-all, Sports Illustrated has been a large part of Americana. Some things you just expect to be great. Sports Illustrated has been doing it for a long time.

That Old Black Magic (SI)

SI Vault (SI)

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Filed under Dallas Cowboys, General Topics, MLB, NFL, Sports

One response to “Sports Illustrated through the years

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