Frank Deford, 1938-2017
Five of our favorite articles by the longtime Sports Illustrated writer, who died Sunday.
Raised By Women To Conquer Men
A profile of Jimmy Connors on the eve of the 1978 U.S. Open. His legendary confidence, honed by his mother since childhood, was in free-fall. (He would go on to win the final in straight sets.)
The Rabbit Hunter
A profile of Indiana basketball coach Bobby Knight.
The Toughest Coach There Ever Was
“Robert Victor Sullivan, whom you’ve surely never heard of, was the toughest coach of them all. He was so tough he had to have two tough nicknames, Bull and Cyclone, and his name was usually recorded this way: coach Bob “Bull” “Cyclone” Sullivan or coach Bob (Bull) (Cyclone) Sullivan. Also, at times he was known as Big Bob or Shotgun. He was the most unique of men, and yet he remains utterly representative of a time that has vanished, from the gridiron and from these United States.”
The Boxer and The Blonde
“This is the story of Billy Conn, who won the girl he loved but lost the best fight ever.”
Our Favorite Feats
An intertwined profile of Roger Bannister, the first person to run four-minute mile, and Sir Edmund Hillary, the first person to climb Mount Everest.