In the violent world of football, helmet-crushing hits that cause concussions are common. While these injuries often make headlines in pro football, few realize that head injuries at other levels of the game, specifically high school, are occurring at an astounding rate and can have deadly consequences. In the last two years alone, eight kids have died from head injuries and many more have suffered catastrophic injuries following a concussion. Real Sports host Bryant Gumbel takes an in-depth look at the disturbing frequency and deadly hazards of concussions in high school football.
When U.S. Olympic athlete Cullen Jones took to the podium with his teammates to accept the 4x100m freestyle relay gold medal at the Beijing Olympics last year, Americans saw something sadly unfamiliar: a successful African-American swimmer. Jones' story, while inspirational and historically significant, is a reminder of the black community's complex relationship with swimming. A Supreme Court ruling desegregating American beaches and pools in 1971 sparked riots and bloodshed, and much of the African-American community continues to hold an aversion to swimming today. Black children drown at a rate more than three times greater than whites and as many 75% of African-Americans do not know how to swim. Now, with Olympic gold in his pocket and fame on his side, Cullen Jones is doing everything he can to reverse these trends. Correspondent Mary Carrillo joins him to explore the relationship between race and swimming in this country.
As newspapers across the country struggle to maintain circulation and clout in the volatile world of digital media, sports editors at virtually every daily newspaper have made difficult decisions to reduce staff and pages. The result has been a mass exodus of top writers from some of America's most prestigious sports sections, which has reshaped the reporting and consumption of sports news and opinion. In this Real Sports/Sports Illustrated report, correspondent Frank Deford probes the decline of this great tradition and considers the prospects for newspaper sports sections in the new media environment.
As the deplorable world of dogfighting remains in the spotlight, Real Sports revisits its 2007 investigation of this underground culture. Through behind-the-scenes footage and interviews, correspondent Bernard Goldberg takes a fresh look at the troubling practice and examines recent actions taken to curtail it.