Browsing: Iraq

A new book by Tiger Woods’ former swing coach says the golf megastar’s real passion was to be a Navy SEAL. In “The Big Miss,” due out March 27, Hank Haney details Woods’ ambition to become an elite special operator. According to Haney, over four days spent at a special operations training camp at Fort Bragg, N.C.,  Woods did “hand-to-hand combat exercises,” “four-mile runs wearing combat boots” and wind tunnel drills, and completed “two tandem parachute jumps.” Woods’ late father, Earl, was an Army Green Beret who did two tours in Vietnam. And Woods’ own AT&T National golf tournament is…

I’ve come across a handful of thoughtful, powerful stories related to the 10th anniversary of the September 11, 2001 attack that have ties to the military sports world. From a teenager describing how his life was turned upside down after his father, a former West Point football player, was wounded in Iraq, to the memories of the emotional 2001 Army-Navy game in Philadelphia, these four reflections are worth your time: Today’s youths in military families shoulder the horrors of 9/11 (Petula Dvorak, The Washington Post) “There aren’t too many 17-year-olds who can claim to have a “mom sense.” But Jaelen, a…

Our Gannett brothers over at the Louisville Courier-Journal produced the video below and wrote a story last week about the Wounded Warrior Amputee Softball Team. The 15-member team is exactly what it sounds like: Veterans who’ve lost a limb in the Afghanistan and Iraq wars who’ve come together to play a game they love and show what wounded troops are capable of.

Boxing legend Oscar De La Hoya has always been one of the Good Guys in pro sports, and he proved that again this month by visiting U.S. troops stationed in Iraq and the Middle East. De La Hoya, along with three up-and-coming fighters from his company, gave boxing clinics and mingled with various troops on the week-long trip, which sponsored by the USO. The experience, which included visits to bases that came under fire, left him humbled. “Hearing their stories and seeing what they go through on a daily basis has changed my life,” De La Hoya told ESPN’s Dan…

UFC welterweight Mike Swick is a pretty good sport. Not only did he travel to Iraq and give an MMA seminar to troops at Camp Adder, afterward he took on any  soldiers who wanted to grapple. As you might imagine, it didn’t end well for any of the soldiers. A couple guys got hit with Swick’s triangle, one soldier tapped out via rear-naked choke while another fell victim to a Swick armbar. But win or lose, I can’t imagine a cooler thing for an MMA fan/practitioner stuck in Iraq than to get a chance to actually hone their skills against…

BAGHDAD — Now that combat operations have ended, it seems soldiers have time to work on their swing. It seems there’s a driving range at each one of Saddam Hussein’s old palaces at Camp Victory in Iraq. “If you dredged the lake you’d probably find close to 10,000 golf balls,” said Maj. Kristian Sorensen, an Army spokesman at Camp Victory. Saddam’s former palaces, now packed with American soldiers and contractors, sit around a man made lake. Supposedly, Saddam shut off Baghdad’s water for three days in order to fill the lakes. Now it’s also filled with golf balls and giant…

A little blast from the past here — FOB Summerall in Bayji, Iraq on July 4, 2004. It was hot as hell. The wind was blowing, but it didn’t cool anyone down because it was hot wind filled with sand, which later stuck to all the food at the barbecue. The devilish weather didn’t keep the scheduled sports activities from taking place, though. For a while, I watched the Iraqi police with their high-waisted athletic pants and knee socks play enthusiastically against soldiers from 1st Battalion, 7th Field Artillery Regiment, the boys and girls from the Big Red One. But…

Inspired by the 2010 Winter Olympics in Canada, deployed service members in Iraq and Afghanistan held their own athletic competitions. At COB Speicher in Iraq, U.S. Division North held a “biathlon” for 40 soldiers, one sailor and one  airman. The event had them run 3.7 miles out to a firing range where they had to shoot for score and then the same distance back to the finish line at COB Speicher. They were scored by a combination of run-time and their shooting score. The event was won by: • Spc. Douglas Long (US), Male Winner, 2/25th AVN Bn., 25th ID…

The Barry Switzer-led “Team Freedom” beat Tommy Bowden’s “Team Liberty” 36-8 in the first-ever Tostitos “Salute the Troops” flag football bowl game held at Camp Liberty, Iraq, New Year’s day. Tostitos partnered with the USO to bring college football legends down range for a head-to-head match with U.S. military members. “These brave men and women weren’t able to experience the excitement of the bowl season, so we brought the thrill to them, complete with some of their favorite college football legends,” former University of Oklahoma Coach Barry Switzer said. “It was something I know I won’t forget and I hope…

Have you ever wondered how you would stand up against your favorite college football players in a backyard flag football game? Some troops down range are about to find out. Tostitos has teamed up with the USO for the first-ever “Salute the Troops” Bowl game to be held at an undisclosed base in Baghdad New Year’s Day. Highlights from the all-star flag football event, which will pit military members against college football greats, will air during the 2010 Tostitos Fiesta Bowl on FOX on Jan. 4. Legendary football coaches Barry Switzer and Tommy Bowden will lead the two teams. “Our…

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