Thursday To-Do: Frank Deford | Rock Candy

Thursday To-Do: Frank Deford

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Frank Deford speaks at Little Rock's Embassy Suites Thursday.
  • Frank Deford speaks at Little Rock's Embassy Suites Thursday.


FRANK DEFORD
7 p.m. Embassy Suites. $100.


Surely, Frank Deford must be our most august sports commentator. He's without a doubt one of the profession's most revered and respected practitioners, having served on the staff of Sports Illustrated for about five decades and having been voted Sportswriter of the Year six times by his colleagues. Each week I listen to Deford on NPR's "Morning Edition."

His observations are always hella cogent, and they're delivered with the sort of fine sense of delivery and timing and elocution that one imagines he first honed in the classrooms and lecture halls of his alma mater, Princeton University. There are no sacred cows for Deford, no trace of the fealty to power structures and institutions that so many of his peers seem to exhibit.

An old boss of mine — a Fox News-style Republican right down to his Sean Hannity-endorsed cufflinks — once remarked to me that, even though he couldn't stand the borderline communist propaganda of those pinko socialists over at NPR, he just had to listen every Wednesday morning to hear Deford hold forth on the relevant sports-related topics of the day.

Although this event is a bit on the pricey side, it does include dinner, a reading and book-signing, and it benefits Friends of KLRE/KUAR public radio.

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