Friday February 20th, 2015

Here is a roundup of SI.com's 10 most popular stories this week. Be sure to read to the bottom for a bonus story from the SI Vault.


The Unlikely MVP

Robert Seale/SI

James Harden went from a sixth man to a leading scorer when he was traded from Oklahoma City to Houston. Now, he's more than just a scorer—he's the NBA's most valuable playerBy Lee Jenkins.


Courtroom Drama

Simon Bruty/Sports Illustrated

 
Patricia Driscoll complained to Delaware authorities about Kurt Busch knocking her head against a wall. Busch responded by calling Driscoll a trained assassin. Now, Driscoll says she's suffering because she spoke upBy Andrew Lawrence.

More from Mariota

Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

Marcus Mariota has been able to overcome and prosper despite every obstacle he’s faced in his highly-decorated football career. But Heisman Trophy or no Heisman Trophy, Mariota’s label of being just another prolific spread-offense quarterback isn’t going to be easy to shake. By Don Banks.


Re-ranking the recruits

Don Juan Moore/Getty Images

What would the 2012 recruiting rankings have looked like if we knew how each player would perform over the next three seasons? Some teams surprised—and others played just how we expectedBy Andy Staples.


Winter World Cup

Nadine Rupp/Getty Images

Amid controversies over political corruption and slave labor, FIFA created another one for the 2022 Qatar World Cup—it will be played during November and DecemberBy Grant Wahl.


The Craft: Wesley Matthews

Sam Forencich/NBAE via Getty Images

The new Wesley Matthews is no longer just driven by spite. He has reached a point in his career where memories of public skepticism—going undrafted, being labeled as overpaid—are but relicsBy Rob Mahoney.


Lady Vols no longer

Doug Benc/Getty

 
On July 1, only the women's basketball team at Tennessee will still be known as the Lady Volunteers. The switch to Volunteers for everyone else has left some losing their sense of traditionBy Zac Ellis.

Trade deadline roundup

Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Recaps and reactions for every trade after the wildest trade deadline in NBA history. By Rob Mahoney.


Red flags

Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

Teams will be watchful during their prospect interviews at the NFL combine. They'll want to know the truth about a player's off-field incidents, and if that player fails to tell the truth, it can resonate throughout the entire leagueBy Doug Farrar.


Ready to break out

Charles Mitchell/Icon Sportswire

With several quarterbacks entering spring practice in the mix for high-profile jobs, and some of the top-rated players from the 2014 recruiting class ready to make their debuts, there are plenty of redshirt freshmen who could be set to make major impactsBy Colin Becht.


SI Vault: Running for their lives

Lynn Johnson/Sports Illustrated

Thanks to a selfless coach, the sons of Mexican migrants in a dirt-poor California town turned their backs on drugs and gangs and built an athletic dynasty. But what would they do without him? By Gary Smith.

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