On the day that the mighty Bill Simmons unleashes his new project Grantland, Tommy Craggs of noble Deadspin destroys the myth of Grantland Rice with the force of a million hurricanes battling the Norse gods.
Reading him today is not unlike looking at your maiden aunt's collection of Precious Moments figurines. Moths come flying off every word. He was responsible for a lot of the worst pathologies of sportswriting today, and the fact that a major web site now unironically carries his name tells me we've done to Rice what Rice did to so many ballplayers over the years. We've godded up the godmaker.
A young Rice once wrote (most of the quotes here come via Charles Fountain's biography, Sportswriter): "Did you ever hear of the battles of Gettysburg, Bull Run or Waterloo? Of how Napoleon crossed the Alps on a mule and Washington the Delaware on a piece of floating ice? Well, all these were mere skirmishes compared with the struggle that took place yesterday at Athletic Park."
Rice was covering a minor-league baseball game.
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