Wednesday, August 24, 2011

The Curse of S.I.

Let’s see if I have this right: you DO want your picture on the cover of Rolling Stone, but you do NOT want your picture on the cover of Sports Illustrated, because of the “Curse of S.I.”, which is, if your picture is on the cover of S.I. some bad thing will happen to you.

This old curse was talked about a great deal more a couple decades ago than now.  But there’s a resurgence of discussion about it, because the Brewers have been red-hot, and there this undercurrent of fear that having the pictures of three Brewers stars on the cover of S.I. will cause the team to go on a losing streak or that some injury will befall one of the three.

There was the case of Braves (back when the Braves played in Milwaukee) star third baseman Eddie Mathews , who was the first person to appear on the cover of Sports Illustrated back in August of 1954. The Braves snapped a nine-game winning streak, and a broken hand later caused Mathews to miss seven games.  That’s when the curse started…with the very first issue of S.I.

In August of ’78, Pete Rose was on the cover of S.I., and his 44-game hitting streak ended that week. In January 2010, Vikings quarterback Brett Favre was on the cover with the headline "Favre on Fire" before the NFC Championship Game and lost, so I guess the curse can be good for Packers fans.  On January 19, 2011, Jay Cutler appeared on the cover, and then injured his knee as the Bears lost to the Packers in the NFC championship game.

There are scores of places on the internets where you can look up the list of athletes who have supposedly suffered from the Curse of S.I.

As I write this, on Wednesday morning, the Brewers are the hottest team in baseball, with a franchise-record 10-game lead on the Cardinals in the National League Central Division.

Fingers crossed.

1 comment:

  1. Maybe the best chronicler of jinxed athletes and teams is Sports Illustrated itself.

    Great stuff.