Page 8 - Sports Facts

Stan Smith, one of the greatest tennis players of all time, couldn't even make it as a ball boy as a kid!

There's no better feeling than heading back to the naysayers and discouraging people from your past and rubbing your success in their faces. Tennis superstar Stan Smith experienced exactly that when he went on to become the number one ranking tennis player in the world at one point—but couldn't even qualify to be a ball boy as a kid.

Stan Smith applied to be a ball boy in 1963 for a match between the United States and Mexico at the L.A. Club. Though he dreamed of sharing the court with his tennis heroes, he was turned down because he was "too awkward" and would bother players with his "clomping" size-13 feet, according to the guy in charge of ball boys.

He retired in 1985, with over $1.7 million in prize money throughout his career. He achieved the highest ranking in professional tennis in 1972 and has achieved over 80 titles. His biggest wins include multiple wins at Wimbledon and the US Open in both Grand Slam Singles and Grand Slam Doubles.

He was rated the 35th greatest player by TENNIS magazine in 2005.


The SF Giants' fans frequently get attacked by seagulls and pigeons at the games. Here's their creative solution

The seagulls and pigeons of San Francisco become quite a nuisance around the 9th inning at a Giants game. These birds might as well have come straight out of an Alfred Hitchcock movie as they dive-bomb for leftover garlic fries. They also shamelessly drop their waste on unsuspecting fans.

Well, the Giants came up with a solution to the problem in the form of a red-tailed hawk by the name of Bruce Lee. "It's a warrior," Giants operations director Jorge Costa told The Bay Citizen. "You don't mess with it."

Since Lee took perch high along the third-base side of the Park, employees have witnessed him devouring pigeons and intimidating the gulls. "Whenever it's even remotely in the area, there is no bird activity of any kind here," Costa said.

After the opening of the waterfront ballpark in 2000, it soon became evident that the gulls will be a chronic problem. The Giants explored the possibility of hiring a falconer to deal with the problem, but soon realized that it would not be a cost-effective solution.

The team built a box for Bruce Lee to nest in on one of it's favorite light towers along the third base line. Hopefully it will make itself at home on a permanent basis.


NFL teams receive tax exemptions that are worth $91MM. But one man is trying to get them to pay!

"Hardworking taxpayers should not be forced to provide funding to offset tax giveaways to lucrative professional sports teams and leagues," said Sen. Tom Coburn of Oklahoma in a CNN report. He was referring to the NFL, which is registered as a non-for-profit organization.

The senator issued the "Wastebrook 2012′ report which pointed to one hundred ways in which the U.S. Government was wasting money. These included loopholes that allow the NFL to be exempt from federal tax earnings.

Sen. Coburn said that, closing these loopholes which allow such tax breaks for the NFL, would bring in an estimated $91 million for the Treasury. According to NFL spokesman Greg Aiello, each of it's individual teams are in fact taxed because they do make a profit. In his response he pointed out that it is the league's office that is listed as a 'non-for-profit'.

In an interview with Sports Illustrated in 2010, the executive director of the National Football League Players Association, DeMaurice Smith, raised the issue with over 100 reporters at a press conference before the 2011 lockout. He said: "I asked them: 'Raise your hand if you knew the National Football League was a non-profit organization? Silence. It is. It's a 501 C 6 non-profit.'"


Some awesome lists!

Shaq is ready to serve up some justice with his post-NBA career. Find out more!

What would make you feel more safe than seeing Shaq roll up next to you in his very own cop car? If he wasn't one of the best defenders in the NBA, that may have been exactly what he would have done. In fact, in both Los Angeles and Miami he went through the County Sherriff's Reserve Academy.

Shaquille O'Neal has expressed interest time and time again in law enforcement as both an off-season activity and a post-NBA career.

When he was traded to the Suns he was made an honorary deputy by the Maricopa County, Arizona sheriff. Unfortunately, due to his controversial rap freestyle directed at Kobe Bryant a few months later, it was taken away.

Last July Shaq was officially sworn in as a part-time Golden Beach Police officer in Florida. It wasn't clear exactly what his job would be, but it was doubtful that he would spend time patrolling the streets like the average officer.

During the NBA season he serves as a contributor to TNT's "Inside the NBA" show, eating into his time as a server of justice.


Darren Sproles was so good in peewee football, his league made a rule to slow him down!

Darren Sproles is an NFL running back and return specialist for the New Orleans Saints, and previously for the San Diego Chargers.

Sproles was originally drafted out of Kansas State in the fourth round by the Chargers in the 2005 NFL, where he was the backup to All-Pro running back LaDainian Tomlinson.He worked hard and excelled as a special teams player and as fill in for Tomlinson.

In 2011, he signed as a free agent with the Saints, and went on to have his best season of his career, to date, by leading the entire NFL in all purpose yards (rushing yards + receiving yards + kick/punt return yards.)

Despite his incredible season in 2011, the NFL did not change any rules to try and slow Sproles down, but that is exactly what happened when he played peewee football! Sproles was so much faster than everyone else in his league that they made a rule that his team was no longer allowed to run sweeps to him, because he scored a touchdown every single time!

It's no wonder that he has gone on to succeed in high school, college, and now the pros!



users online