A split screen photo showing Neil deGrasse Tyson and Cameron Fleming, photo credit by Jeffrey Beall under Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported license: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/deed.en.
A split screen photo showing Neil deGrasse Tyson and Cameron Fleming, photo credit by Jeffrey Beall under Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported license: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/deed.en.

Season 3 Premiere: Big Game Special, with Neil deGrasse Tyson and New England Patriot Cameron Fleming

Photo Credit (Cameron Fleming): Jeffrey Beall under Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported license: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/deed.en.
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About This Episode

Are you ready for some football? More importantly, are you ready for the Season 3 Premiere of StarTalk Playing with Science? In preparation for Sunday’s big game, this week New England Patriots Offensive Tackle and 2x Super Bowl champ Cameron Fleming takes a break from practice to talk with resident astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson and show hosts Gary O’Reilly and Chuck Nice. But before we get to Cameron, Chuck and Gary talk with Kevin Krysiak, Director of Innovation at Wilson Sporting Goods, to find out about the “connected football” that’s been used so far in every game of the current NFL season. You’ll learn all about the sensors mounted ingeniously inside the ball that can, for the first time, quantify the quarterback and the throw, measuring spiral quality, ball speed and even impact. Kevin describes how he and Wilson worked for over a decade to create a connected ball, and how developments in miniaturization made the current version possible. Explore the future of football, where connected equipment, players and even the field communicate wirelessly with each other, coaches, referees and even the fans. Ever the troublemaker, Chuck wonders whether a connected ball could have solved the Deflategate question, and whether in the future connected equipment could replace the need for referees. But he’s just getting started. When Cameron Fleming joins the guys, Chuck, a lifelong Eagles fan who bleeds green, tries to sow discord between Cameron and the man his job is to guard, New England Quarterback Tom Brady. You’ll hear whether preparation for the Super Bowl is different than the rest of the season, and how Cameron stays focused and ignores distractions. Neil and Cameron, who studied aeronautics at Stanford, discuss whether understanding physics influenced how Neil wrestled or how Cameron plays football. Plus, you’ll find out about the two kinds of Philadelphia Eagles fans, and hear Chuck say something about Tom Brady you never would have expected him to say in public.

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