StarTalk Playing with Science – The Big Game

StarTalk Playing with Science Hosts Chuck Nice and Gary O'Reilly. Credit: Ben Ratner.
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About This Episode

SERIES PREMIERE: Just in time for Sunday’s big game, StarTalk and Stitcher proudly present our new podcast, StarTalk Playing with Science. To prep for Sunday, our hosts – professional British soccer player and sports broadcaster Gary O’Reilly and Chuck Nice – have invited two former NFL players who just happen to be Super Bowl champions: Osi Umenyiora, formerly of the NY Giants, and Super Bowl XLIII MVP Santonio Holmes, formerly of the Pittsburgh Steelers. On the science side, Gary and Chuck have not one, but two astrophysicists: Neil deGrasse Tyson, host of StarTalk Radio, and Charles Liu, one of the hosts of StarTalk All-Stars. First up, dive into the physics of Holmes’ amazing game winning catch in Super Bowl XLIII. Charles Liu and Santonio talk about the training that helped him keep his feet in play, and the angular momentum and the ball’s additional torque that threatened to pull him out of bounds. You’ll also hear about Holmes’ journey from Belle Glade, Florida to Super Bowl MVP, including his prediction two weeks before the big game that he’d end up the game’s MVP. Next, Charles Liu and Osi Umenyiora dissect the science behind the linebacker’s ongoing harassment of Tom Brady in the NY Giants’ two extraordinary Super Bowl wins over the New England Patriots. They talk about the physics that go into Osi’s signature “strip sack fumble” play from the quarterback’s blind side, and why “the low man wins” is a rule to live by in football. Next, Gary and Chuck drop “the Neil bomb” and bring in astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson to talk with Osi about the similarities between football and wrestling, and the x-factor that can lead players and teams to victory. You’ll discover the secret to beating Tom Brady in the big game, and then Osi gets to ask his hero, Neil, a question about working hard vs. being smart. All this, plus Neil’s tweet about flying cars and football, the interaction between coaches and players in the NFL, and a comic rant about the big game by comedian James L. Mattern.

New episodes will premiere Wednesday nights at 7 pm ET.

NOTE: All-Access subscribers can watch or listen to this entire episode commercial-free here: Playing with Science – The Big Game.

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