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THE MAGAZINE
Posted: Tuesday February 12, 2008 3:55PM ; Updated: Tuesday January 11, 2011 6:28PM

SI Books

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Sports Illustrated: Blood, Sweat and Chalk

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The modern game of football is filled with plays and formations with names like the Counter Trey, the Wildcat, the Zone Blitz and the Cover Two. They have become part of the sport's vernacular, and yet for many fans they remain just names, often confusing ones. To rectify that, Tim Layden has drilled deep into the core of the game to reveal not only how these chalkboard X's and O's really work on the field, but also where they came from and who dreamed them up.

These playbook schemes, many of them illuminated by diagrams, bear the insignia of some of the game's great innovators, men like Vince Lombardi, Don Coryell, Tom Osborne, Bill Walsh, Tony Dungy and Buddy Ryan. But football has also been radically altered by the ingenious work of men with more obscure names, like Tiger Ellison, Emory Bellard and Mouse Davis.

In Blood, Sweat and Chalk, Layden takes readers into the meeting rooms -- and in some cases the living rooms -- where the game's most significant ideas were hatched. He goes to the coaches and to the players who inspired them, and lets them tell their stories. In candid conversations with some of football's most intriguing characters, Layden provides a fascinating guide to the game, helping fans to better see the subtleties of America's favorite sport.

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Sports Illustrated: Dallas Cowboys: 50 Years of Football

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Few teams in American sports have generated such powerful emotional reactions as the Dallas Cowboys. Like the New York Yankees or the Notre Dame Fighting Irish, the Cowboys are both revered and reviled in the extreme. For the fans who love them, the famed franchise has, over its first half century, delivered heroes like Bob Lilly, Chuck Howley, Roger Staubach, Bob Hayes, Mel Renfro, Tom Landry, Cliff Harris, Randy White, Troy Aikman. Record-breakers like Tony Dorsett, Emmitt Smith, Michael Irvin. Memorable characters like Don Meredith, Pete Gent, Tex Schramm, Harvey Marvin, Too Tall Jones, Hollywood Henderson, Jimmy Johnson. They have been, over their first 50 years the most fascinating team in football. In 1960, their first season, the Cowboys were winless. By the 1966 season they were playing in the NFL Championship Game. In January of 1972 they won their first Super Bowl title. In 1996 they won their fifth -- in their eighth Super Bowl appearance, the most by any team. The Cowboys have won dramatically, won stylishly and won relentlessly. Their captivating odyssey is all here in nearly 200 pages of pictures, stories, iconography, numbers and arcane from those five decades -- a unique celebration of a football team.

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Sports Illustrated: The Hockey Book

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From its earliest days on frozen ponds, hockey has been a sport of speed and elegance, but also one demanding courage and physical will. The Hockey Book goes deep into the heart of the game, celebrating with astounding photographs and insightful words the great players and the inspiring teams, as well as an ethos -- robust and selfless -- that defines the sport as much in its dynamic present as it did in hockey's hardscrabble (and helmetless) past.

Edited by Sports Illustrated senior editor Kostya Kennedy with help from designer Steven Hoffman, The Hockey Book is a must-have for any hockey fan.

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Sports Illustrated: The Covers

For more than half a century Sports Illustrated has put its best face forward every week with one iconic image -- the cover. The work of some of the world's greatest photographers and illustrators, there are now nearly 3,000 examples of this magazine art, all curated here in book form for the first time.

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The greatest moments in sports history are celebrated, as they happened: Ali's defeat of Liston, the Miracle on Ice, Dwight Clark's Catch, Doug Flutie's Hail Mary, Mark Spitz's golds and then Michael Phelps's. Virtually every important athlete in the world -- from Roger Bannister in 1955, to Roger Maris is '61, to Roger Staubach in '78 and Roger Federer in 2009 -- has appeared there, and those are just the Rogers. It's the one arena in which Michael Jordan, Muhammad Ali and Jack Nicklaus have all competed together, for the distinction of having the most SI covers.

These images are now unique cultural artifacts, and taken together they add up to a delightful and entertaining chronicle of the sporting scene like no other.

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Sports Illustrated: The Basketball Book

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Continuing Sports Illustrated's tradition of producing best-selling coffee-table books for the holiday season, SI presents The Basketball Book, a lavish celebration of the athleticism and pageantry of both the college and professional game. With the same kind of unforgettable photographs and award-winning writing that propelled The Baseball Book, The Football Book and The Anniversary Book to The New York Times best-seller list over the past three years, this volume brings to life the legendary players, the classic action and the great rivalries of the court. In 294 oversized pages, The Basketball Book commemorates the epic teams and characters, the personalities and performances and artifacts that have created legions of passionate fans since Dr. James Naismith nailed up a peach basket and devised the Original 13 Rules of the game more than 100 years ago.

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Sports Illustrated: The Football Book

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On the heels of the successful Sports Illustrated 50th Anniversary Book comes a spectacular celebration of professional football that will be treasured by fans of Americas Game. With the same kind of unforgettable photographs and award-winning writing that made the SIs 50th Anniversary Book a best-seller, this lavish coffee-table volume brings to life the bone-rattling action of NFL football and the extraordinary athletes who have made it Americas true national pastime. In 256 oversized pages, The Football Book commemorates the dynasties and the dominating players, the crucial plays and classic games, the personalities and performances that propelled the NFL during SIs first 50 years of publication, from a marginal, ragtag league to the biggest game in town.

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Sports Illustrated 50 Years: The Anniversary Book

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This colorful book celebrating fifty years of America's most prominent sports magazine is certainly more practical than hoarding 2,500 issues. The six-part book plays to the strength of the magazine: "The Stories" and "The Photographs" sections are the largest. The 35 articles are truncated, often just whetting your appetite for more. Lose minutes staring at Michael Jordan or Walter Payton frozen in midair. Examine the juxtaposition of a close play at the plate with the bizarre styles of a 60s women's track team. Try not to be swept away at a shot of Bill Russell and Wilt Chamberlain defining basketball. Punctuated by the best sport quotes, SI's "Signs of the Apocalypse," fascinating lists of athletes and teams that were on the cover the most times, and other sport tidbits through the ages, this area is sure to launch a thousand sport memories.

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Sports Illustrated: Fifty Years of Great Writing

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For their 50th anniversary, Sports Illustrated collects 52 of their best and most memorable articles. Editor Rob Fleder delivers on what makes the magazine standout and fashionable: a mix of on-sport reporting (Mark Kram's lyrical coverage of the third Ali-Frazier bout) and polished articles written with years of perspective (Dan Jenkins's examination of the 1960 US Open, 18 years after the golf tournament). SI's most well-know scribe, Frank Deford, bookends the collection with reflections on boxer Billy Conn and a lovely obit on hometown star Johnny Untias.

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