Prof. Colas is blogging (quite well, and at length) about his experience teaching the class at Go Yago! One of the students in the course, Matt Gordon, is blogging about taking the course at Hoopism, and the TrueHoop Network will collectively follow the course by having a member write an essay each week on one of the course materials.
I'm up first, writing about Michael Schumacher's biography of the league first great star, Mr. Basketball: George Mikan, the Minneapolis Lakers, and the Birth of the NBA.
You can read the complete essay at HoopSpeak as part of the Basketball Culture 101 series but here's an excerpt from George Mikan: The Ghost That Lingers:
The NBA is no longer arena-filler in between hockey games and ice shows in the Northeast nor joint vanity project and promotional vehicle for Midwestern industrialists. Teams don’t rely on balancing their books by scheduling themselves as the undercard on a double-header with the Harlem Globetrotters serving as the main event, and the best players are paid more intensely, for a longer period of time, and receive better medical treatment than Mikan, who retired (the first time) at 29. But the struggle to achieve a lifetime of success when your greatest skills abandon you at a young age is timeless, perhaps the inherent complication of having great athletic gifts.Full credit and special thanks to Beckley Mason of HoopSpeak for organizing and running this endeavor. I enjoyed my participation in the project and look forward to reading the work of my colleagues in the coming weeks.