Sweetness And Light Frank Deford's weekly commentary on sports appears Wednesdays on NPR.org.

San Francisco 49ers linebacker Chris Borland, center, during an NFL football game in Santa Clara, Calif. Borland announced that he will retire after just one season to protect himself from brain injuries. Marcio Jose Sanchez/AP hide caption

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Marcio Jose Sanchez/AP

'Borland Effect' A Fumble For Football? Deford Says It Will Pass

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Arizona State fans showcase their Curtain of Distraction during a game against UCLA on Feb. 18 in Tempe, Ariz. Rick Scuteri/AP hide caption

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Rick Scuteri/AP

News From The Charity Stripe

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Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim, right, speaks with an official during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game against Duke in Durham, N.C., on Feb. 28 Gerry Broome/AP hide caption

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Gerry Broome/AP

Deford: NCAA Fans Continue To Drink Deeply Of The (Sports) Spirits

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New York Yankee Alex Rodriguez watches from the dugout during an intrasquad game at a spring training baseball workout Monday in Tampa, Fla. Lynne Sladky/AP hide caption

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Lynne Sladky/AP

Alex Rodriguez Is Back, For Better Or Worse

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Kurt Busch drives during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series auto race in Fort Worth, Texas, on Nov. 2, 2014. Busch was recently suspended indefinitely amid domestic violence accusations. Larry Papke/AP hide caption

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Larry Papke/AP

An Uneventful Week In Sports Could Still Go Down In History

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Kentucky's Aaron Harrison and coach John Calipari watch from the sideline during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game against Mississippi on Jan. 6. Kentucky won 89-86 in overtime. James Crisp/AP hide caption

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James Crisp/AP

John Calipari Gets The Best Out Of His One-And-Done Bench

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UNC Tar Heels head basketball coach Dean Smith gives instructions during a 1997 playoff game against the Colorado Buffaloes. Smith died Saturday. He was 83. Doug Pensinger/Getty Images hide caption

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Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

'Gentleman And Coach' Dean Smith Did What He Believed In

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Tiger Woods on the ninth hole during the second round of the Phoenix Open last Friday, in Scottsdale, Ariz. Woods, who'll turn 40 this year, is making Frank Deford wonder: How does an athlete know when to retire? Rick Scuteri/AP hide caption

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Rick Scuteri/AP

Dear Aging Athletes: Say Hello To Goodbye

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Rafael Nadal (right) shakes hands with Tim Smyczek after winning a match at the Australian Open on Jan. 21. Rob Griffith/AP hide caption

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Rob Griffith/AP

The Tennis Court Offers A Good Lesson For The NFL

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The Atlanta Hawks' Mike Scott scores over the Detroit Pistons' Greg Monroe in a game Monday. The Hawks are currently leading the NBA's Eastern Conference. Dave Tulis/AP hide caption

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Dave Tulis/AP

Frank Deford To The NBA: Who's On Worst?

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Boston is in the running to host the 2024 Olympics. walknboston/Flickr hide caption

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walknboston/Flickr

Not So Wicked Smaht: Boston's Olympic Hopes

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The Yale football team in an undated photo. Commentator Frank Deford finds it curious that a sport as brutal as football became popular among the academic elite. AP hide caption

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AP

Crowning The 33rd-Best Football Team In America

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Sports commentator Mike "Doc" Emrick waves to fans as he is presented with a jersey by the New Jersey Devils in 2012. Bill Kostroun/AP hide caption

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Bill Kostroun/AP

Hockey's Doc Emrick And His 153 Verbs

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A sculpture at Britannia stadium in the English city of Stoke-on-Trent commemorates the Christmas Truce, a legendary soccer game played between German and British troops in December 1914. Rui Vieira/AP hide caption

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Rui Vieira/AP

Deford: It's Hard To Write A Christmas Story About Sport

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San Francisco Giants pitcher Madison Bumgarner was named Sports Illustrated's Sportsman of the Year. David J. Phillip/AP hide caption

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David J. Phillip/AP

What's A Sportsman Anyway?

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