Other Writings

In ‘Trophy Son,’ Fictional Character Accuses Real Life Tennis Stars of Doping


The professional tennis trainer Bobby Hicks claims nearly everyone at or near the top of the men’s tour uses performance-enhancing drugs.

“It’s pervasive in tennis and has been for years,” Hicks said.

And he is willing to name names, starting with Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic, Andy Murray and David Ferrer.

There is one catch to these very public accusations: Bobby Hicks is a fictional character.

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Doug Brunt discusses the changing forces in American youth athletics in Time Magazine

At six years old, our son had friends who played soccer from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m., Monday through Friday. A six-year-old practicing as much as a Division I athlete. (The parents we know are actually hoping their kid stops enjoying it so much.)

I turned six in 1977. Youth athletics then was nothing like this, and I wondered how things changed so much. I started looking at our societal emphasis on sports, using the most tangible metric by which we measure emphasis: money.

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