This is an article from the Sept. 25, 2006 issue
37 A-Rod Agonistes
Even his fellow Yankees find Alex Rodriguez hard to motivate and harder tounderstand
by Tom Verducci
46 Shock Value
Michigan opened up its playbook and turned receiver Mario Manningham loose tostun Notre Dame
by Austin Murphy
50 Tight Ends 2.0
At a re-engineered position that's now home to the most versatile athletes,there's none better than Antonio Gates
by Jeffri Chadiha
54 The Blind Side
Through natural selection and intelligent design, the left tackle has evolvedinto a prized specimen
by Michael Lewis
6 Leading Off
15 Air andSpace
Life begins at 40—or so a retired hockey star tries to persuade the author
by Steve Rushin
A punter's act of desperation
The shooting at Duquesne
26 Faces in theCrowd
80 Life ofReilly
In forcing them to clean up their !@#$%& language, BU confronts the curseof its fans
by Rick Reilly
66 The NFL
The maturation of Alex Smith
Jonathan Stewart carries Oregon
76 Motor Sports
Kevin Harvick leads RCR's revival
PHOTOGRAPH BY ROBTRINGALI
INSET PHOTO: SimonBruty
To sign up forSPORTS ILLUSTRATED's free subscriber-only e-mail newsletter, go tosicustomerservice.com/siextra.
ON THE WEB
FREE SCORES, STATSAND BREAKING NEWS—NO SIGNUP REQUIRED.
Florida's DanUggla (right) has already set the record for homers by a rookie second basemanand is the favorite to be named the NL Rookie of the Year. Go toSI.com/baseball to learn more about Uggla, and check out the rankings of thetop five bullpens among the AL and NL playoff contenders.
After a season inwhich he threw 22 touchdown passes, Michigan State's Drew Stanton (left) knowshe can bolster his stock among NFL scouts with a strong senior year. Check outSI.com/nfl every week to get a rundown of who's making a run up the draftboards and who's slipping.
With the world'stop three players—Tiger Woods, Jim Furyk (below) and Phil Mickelson—can theU.S. shed its underdog label and break its seven-year Ryder Cup losing streak?Get predictions from SI.com's writers and tournament coverage atSI.com/golf.
What threesentences will you never hear at a Raiders game? Find out in this week's Riffsat SI.com.
my SI DOWNLOADFREE
Pick your NFL team and get news from across the Web on your desktop atSI.com/mysi.
By learning to protect the quarterback during the 49ers' title years, Steve Wallace became the NFL's highest paid lineman.
Given a new set of option plays, Falcons quarterback Michael Vick rushed for127 yards in a 14-3 win over the Buccaneers.