For its 60th anniversary cover, Sports Illustrated asked readers to submit photos of themselves playing a sport, being a fan or wearing their favorite team’s gear.
The photos from thousands of people who responded were used in a photomosaic recreation of SI’s first cover, from Aug. 16, 1954, which featured Milwaukee Braves third baseman Eddie Mathews, New York Giants catcher Wes Westrum and umpire Augie Donatelli.
The photomosaic anniversary cover, which features 1,596 photos, seemed like an out-of-the box idea, but it was a logical choice.
"In thinking about what we should do about this cover, we really wanted to make it less about us and more about the people that read the magazine," Chris Hercik, Sports Illustrated Sports Group's Creative Director, said. "It's about doing something different. This mosaic was weeks in the making, but the bottom line is that we wanted to celebrate the sports fan."
Over 3,069 covers in the last 60 years - some iconic, some head-scratching, some controversial - Sports Illustrated’s main focus through its storytelling and photos was to engage readers, provide thought-provoking commentary and inform. Although society at large has changed, fans' thirst for sports has not.
Featured in this issue are a look back on the sports landscape over the last six decades, a feature on new Cleveland Cavaliers head coach David Blatt and some of SI's cover regrets.
SI's Steve Rushin takes readers on a journey through the eyes of Los Angeles Dodgers legendary announcer Vin Scully, who is in his 65th year of broadcasting, as Scully navigates the team's move from Brooklyn, sees athletes come to earn huge salaries because of television contracts and experiences social media changing the way the fans engage the athletes they are cheering for (or against).
SI's Most Dramatic Covers
Oklahoma State Investigation
A look at some of the dramatic covers produced by SI via enterprising reporting.
Jason Collins Reveals He's Gay
Boston Marathon Bombing
Retired NFL Players' Health
NFL Bounty Investigation
Confessions of a Sports Agent
Alex Rodriguez Investigation
Sports and Global Warming
NFL Big Hits
The Pat Tillman Story
Barry Bonds and Steroids
What Steroids Have Done to Baseball
Pete Rose's Confession
The Secret Life of Kirby Puckett
The Dangerous Quest for a World Record
Steroids in Baseball
High School Sports Series
The Death of an NHL Fan
The Post 9/11 Issue
Play Now, Pay Later
The Downfall of Bobby Knight
Looking Back, A 20th Century Celebration
Child Molestation in Youth Sports
Startling Number of Out-of-Wedlock Children
NFL's Dirtiest Players
Cyber Gambling on Sports
What Ever Happened to the White Athlete
Performance-enhancing Drugs Investigation
The Richie Parker Saga
The Most Dangerous Man in Pro Football
Why Miami Should Drop Football
Is Tennis Dying?
Florida State Expose
Why Mary Pierce Fears for Her Life
Terror on the Court
Jim Valvano Battles Cancer
Lyle Alzado Admits to Massive Use of Steroids
Magic Johnson Speaks Out About HIV
Pete Rose Gambling Investigation
Oklahoma Football: A Sordid Story
Kentucky Basketball Probation
How Beer Influences the Games We Watch and Play
Gary McLaiin Cocaine Admission
The Pit Bull Terrier
Gambling on Sports: America's Pastime?
The Money Game: Baseball's Millionaires
Former NFL Player Don Reese Comes Clean
Inside Boston College's Point Shaving Scheme
Miracle on Ice
Confessions of a Master Fixer
Conrad Dobler: Pro Football's Dirtiest Player
Gerald Ford: My View of Sport
Babe Ruth: The Legend Comes to Life
Women Are Getting a Raw Deal
Lew Alcindor: My Story
Bill Russell Announces His Retirement
Ted Williams: The Science of Hitting
The Black Athlete: A Shameful Story
The Case for the 12-foot Basket
Bear Bryant: I'll Tell You About Football
Wilt Chamberlain: My Life in a Bush League
Bill Russell: 'How I Psych Them'
Cassius Clay: I'm a Little Special on Calculated Zaniness
Paul Hornung: The True Moral Crisis in Sports
Floyd Patterson: My Life Story
John F. Kennedy Criticizes "The Soft American"
Rushin sums up the last six decades: "And so anyone who wants to understand the last 60 years in sports, the journey from the Regency TR-1 to the iPhone5s, who do well to stop at Dodger Stadium, high atop Chavez Revine. Vin embodies changes on the field, changes in technology, changes in the economics of sports. And all of that in a guy who may be the best storyteller in the history of broadcasting."
Scully will call the Dodgers game against the Milwaukee Brewers this year on Aug. 16, just as he did sixty years ago when the Brooklyn Dodgers played the Philadelphia Phillies on Aug. 16, 1954.
"Sixty years and a continent separate those two games," Rushin writes, "between which everything changed and - he (Scully) is quick to say, surveying that beautiful ball field - 'nothing much has changed at all.'"
To see if you made the cover, view the larger image here. For more of Rushin's story, pick up this week's Sports Illustrated (subscribe here).
2014 Sports Illustrated Covers
December 29, 2014 | The Buckeyes are down to their third-string quarterback for coach Urban Meyer, who is two victories away from claiming his third national title. *This is a double issue: Dec. 29, 2014 0 Jan. 5, 2015.
December 29, 2014 | Oregon’s high-powered offense led by Heisman Trophy winner Marcus Mariota looks to lead the Ducks to their first national championship.
December 29, 2014 | Florida State, winners of 29 straight games, are led last year’s Heisman winner Jameis Winston and a resiliency unmatched in college football.
December 29, 2014 | The Crimson Tide are back in the title hunt, seeking their fourth national championship in the last six seasons.
December 22, 2014 | Jon Lester’s arrival in Chicago, along with a six-year $155 million contract, has expectations high for the "lovable losers," who are now 12-1 favorites to win the 2015 World Series.
December 22, 2014 | The San Francisco 49ers three-year NFC Championship game appearance run is coming to end and head coach Jim Harbaugh’s tenure with the team could soon be coming to an end as well.
December 15, 2014 | San Francisco Giants pitcher Madison Bumgarner had a postseason for the ages, giving up only six earned runs while pitching a record 52 2/3 innings helping the Giants to their third World Series title in the past five seasons. He is seventh MLB pitcher to be awarded Sports Illustrated’s Sportsman of the Year.
December 8, 2014 | The Pelicans do-it-all forward Anthony Davis is headed for superstardom, complete with an offensive game that’s hard to defend and a fearless defensive presence around the basket.
December 8, 2014 | Wisconsin’s record-setting running back Melvin Gordon has his sights on the FBS single-season rushing record and the Heisman Trophy.
December 1, 2014 | Big, strong and fast, Jordy Nelson is perhaps the NFL's best deep threat and undoubtedly one of the league's best receivers, even though he hasn't always been recognized as such. On pace to finish atop the franchise's all-time leaders in receptions and receiving yards, Nelson, who's on this week's SI cover, is a solid bet to make his first Pro Bowl this season, and he's helped the Packers (8-3) become a Super Bowl contender once again.
November 24, 2014 | The Patriots may have a found another diamond in the rough, this time with undrafted running back Jonas Gray, who ran for 199 yards and 4 touchdowns in a Monday night victory over the Colts.
November 24, 2014 | One of the NHL’s best defensemen, P.K. Subban of the Canadiens. hopes to help bring the Stanley Cup to Montreal for the first time since 1993.
November 17, 2014 | The NFL’s most dominate defensive player, Texans All-Pro J.J. Watt, wants to focus on nothing else but the next play and piling up victories.
November 17, 2014 | The Arizona Cardinals are sporting the league’s best record, despite injuries across the board, including to their starting quarterback.
College Basketball preview: Duke
November 10, 2014 | Freshman Jahlil Okafor and the Blue Devils have the nation’s No. 1 recruit class and will look to avoid last season’s disappointment after losing in the first round of the NCAA Tournament to Mercer.
College Basketball preview: Kentucky
November 10, 2014 | With nine talented McDonald's All-Americans on the roster and sky-high expectations, preseason No. 1 Kentucky leads a pack of teams looking to reach the Final Four in Indianapolis.
College Basketball preview: Wisconsin
November 10, 2014 | Paced by the nation’s most efficient offense, Wisconsin and Wooden award candidate Frank Kaminsky look to dethrone Michigan State as the Big Ten’s top team.
College Basketball preview: Texas
November 10, 2014 | With five returning starters plus freshman Myles Turner, Texas may just have enough to end Kansas and its 10-year stranglehold on the Big 12.
College Basketball preview: Arizona
November 10, 2014 | The Wildcats are paced by a ferocious defense and another stellar recruiting class but can they break through to get to the Final Four?
The World Series
November 10, 2014 | San Francisco’s third World Series victory in five seasons can be credited by a dominate pitching performance by Madison Bumgarner and a shrewd front office that is built to win.
The World Series special issue
November 3, 2014 | SI's special digital edition on the heels of the San Francisco Giants winning Game 7 of the World Series over the Kansas City Royals.
The World Series, Royals and Giants
November 3, 2014 | As the World Series comes to a close, the Giants and Royals try to play the kind of baseball that got them this far: playing stingy defense to go along with outstanding pitching.
November 3, 2014 | Admit reports of locker room turmoil, the Super Bowl Champion Seattle Seahawks win over the Panthers on Sunday have quieted their critics…..for now.
October 27, 2014 | The Cleveland Cavaliers squarely have a target on their backs after LeBron James and Kevin Love joined the team. But does that make them the favorites for the championship?
Kansas City Royals
October 27, 2014 | The World Series between the Royals and Giants may lack power hitting prowess, but will feature plenty of running, timely hitting and outstanding pitching.
October 20, 2014 | Mississippi State quarterback and Heisman candidate Dak Prescott has the Bulldogs sitting on top of the polls after a shocking run through some of the top teams in the SEC.
October 20, 2014 | There are thousands of homeless athletes around the United States and an SI investigation found that most of them thrive and survive with the help of sports.
Ole Miss and Mississippi State
October 13, 2014 | The Magnolia State was front and center of the college football universe last Saturday, with Ole Miss and Mississippi State scoring historic victories and throwing the college football playoff into complete chaos.
Kansas City Royals
October 13, 2014 | Lacking power, but plenty of speed, the Kansas City Royals are four victories from their first World Series appearance since 1985.
Adam Jones and Alex Ovechkin
October 6, 2014 | Hoping to avoid early playoff exits, fans of the Beltway teams pins its championship hopes on Orioles outfielder Adam Jones and Capitals center Alex Ovechkin.
Adam Wainwright and T. J Oshie
October 6, 2014 | The St. Louis Cardinals and St. Louis Blues, led by Adam Wainwright and T. J Oshie, look to get past last year’s disappointing playoff exits.
Clayton Kershaw and Anze Kopitar
October 6, 2014 | Although Los Angeles has no NFL team, Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw and Kings forward Anze Kopitar are making sure that fans in the area don't miss America's most popular sport.
September 29, 2014 | As New York Yankees shortshop Derek Jeter closes the book on a 20-year career, he reflects on what has changed in the time that he has been in pinstripes.
September 22, 2014 | Oregon quarterback Marcus Mariota is almost certainly going to be a first-round NFL draft pick next year, but why are scouts so high on him?