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Winning Gambit

April 23, 2012
April 23, 2012

Table of Contents
April 23, 2012

LEADING OFF
GOLF PLUS
Sports Illustrated DIGITAL
THE MAIL
EDITOR'S LETTER
Inside: THE WEEK IN SPORTS
NFL DRAFT PREVIEW
  • ECHOES OF '98 ABOUND AS THE FOOTBALL WORLD WEIGHS THE MERITS OF THE QUARTERBACK PAIR CERTAIN TO BE TAKEN AT THE TOP ON APRIL 26. Like PEYTON MANNING AND RYAN LEAF 14 YEARS AGO, ANDREW LUCK AND ROBERT GRIFFIN III WILL BE FOREVER LINKED AS COSTARS IN A DRAFT THAT WILL SHAPE THE FATES OF TWO FRANCHISES

  • In drafting wide receivers, Calvin Johnson—towering, muscular and superbly athletic—is the new model. But where are the corners who can neutralize such a weapon?

BASEBALL
SPRING FOOTBALL
SOCCER
  • He's spent 15 years at the top of the game and is set to play in his record 300th straight Premier League match. Yes, Brad Friedel is the Cal Ripken of English football, and he's 100% American—except for that accent

Departments

Winning Gambit

One school's bold move turns the tables in collegiate chess

Call it a grandmaster flash: After guiding Texas Tech to its second straight national collegiate chess title early this month, Knight Raiders coach Susan Polgar and her entire seven-player A squad (all of whom carry the game's highest ranking), along with three other players, packed up their pieces to move to Webster University in St. Louis for next season. Her ambitions hamstrung by the bureaucracy of a state institution, Polgar (above)—a Budapest native who at 15 was the world's top-ranked female player—met with Webster provost Julian Schuster last year about a possible transfer, which was finalized in February. The lure of stronger financial backing and full scholarships helped persuade the coach and players. Helping too was St. Louis's chess culture: The city is home to the U.S. nationals, the World Chess Hall of Fame, and a 6,000-square-foot chess club funded by billionaire Rex Sinquefield. As Polgar told the AP, "It just seemed like a perfect fit."

This is an article from the April 23, 2012 issue

Polgar's old school harbors no ill will, according to a university spokesman. Her new one, which has more than 100 campuses worldwide, hopes to attract stronger students both at home and abroad through chess success. "We made the right move," Schuster says, "and we are going to win this game."

PHOTOCOURTESY TEXAS TECH UNIVERSITY (POLGAR)