30 for 30 Podcasts
30 for 30 Podcasts
ESPN, ESPN Films, 30for30
Original audio documentaries from the makers of the acclaimed 30 for 30 film series, featuring stories from the world of sports and beyond. 30 for 30 offers captivating storytelling for sports fans and general interest listeners alike, going beyond the field to explore how sports, competition, athleticism and adventure affect our lives and our world. Sports stories like you've never heard before.
The Bag Game E1: The Making of Billy Preston
To unravel how a top college recruit’s NBA dreams ran into a sprawling federal investigation, reporter Paula Lavigne explores his early years. Billy Preston and his mom struggle to get by in L.A. An active kid, Billy finds basketball through his mom’s partner, a high school coach and former professional player. Billy’s star rises in youth leagues. He generates buzz as an NBA prospect. Top colleges vie for his talents, and his family pulls out all the stops to support his goals. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Apr 18
36 min
The Bag Game E2: Nichole and the Bag Man
Billy’s mom Nichole lets her son focus on improving his game. Meanwhile she fields all the onlookers who want Billy on their team. To play for a top college, Billy couldn’t accept any money or he’d ruin his eligibility. Yet offers to circumvent that abound: aka, the bag game. In the college recruitment dance, Billy gets his top pick and Nicole makes a connection that promises to secure the family’s finances. But Billy’s dream is short-lived. And Nicole’s dealings later get federal investigators’ attention. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Apr 18
51 min
The Bag Game E3: The Sting
The NCAA’s amateurism rules kept schools from paying players like Billy, so money wouldn't sway their college decision. But Paula learns how the youth teams delivering top recruits could serve as a go-between, where influence could be peddled. We hear one youth coach in Florida court much-needed funding from big-time shoe companies, only to land in hot water for what he promises in return. He didn’t know he was being recorded. The bag game unravels, as the feds’ secret investigation comes to light. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Apr 18
42 min
The Bag Game E4: Plausible Deniability
Federal prosecutors tell the college sports world, “We have your playbook." As court cases begin, details come out on secret payments. Who made them and for whose benefit? Who was the victim of all this and what, exactly, was the crime? Why were no head coaches called to testify? Prosecutors break their silence and reveal their legal strategy. After playing overseas, Billy returns for the NBA draft. His name and the Kansas program have been swept into the case. Sentences come down for defendants. Billy and Nichole don’t face charges, but feel the impact of the fallout. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Apr 18
45 min
TRAILER: The Bag Game
ESPN and 30 for 30 Podcasts present "The Bag Game." Investigative reporter Paula Lavigne shines light on the biggest pay-to-play scandal in college basketball, through the story of Billy Preston. He was a five-star recruit set to start for Kansas, when his path crossed a sprawling federal investigation. The complex case ensnared major athletic programs, coaches, apparel executives and agents. But did it clean up corruption in college sports? And what did it mean for players like Billy? Available now. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Apr 13
1 min
PINK CARD Episode 1: Red Girl
Growing up Iranian American, Shima Oliaee found her mother didn’t talk much about where she came from. Watching soccer, though, was a portal to Iran, a place that was in large part a mystery. Shima delves into the stories she didn’t hear growing up: Iran's mandated modernization and how soccer played a role, the women-led 1979 revolution, and her parents’ mistaken-identity love story. Shima and her mom meet Zeinab Sahafy, a young Iranian woman and avid soccer fan whose love of the game led to her being named an enemy of the state. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Dec 8, 2022
22 min
PINK CARD Episode 2: The Mannequins
This episode starts with two questions: If women equally led the 1979 revolution, why were their rights stripped away first? How does this happen to an emboldened part of the population? At first, the women fight back, chanting “Azadi! Azadi!” [translation: “Freedom! Freedom!”] in the streets until the clerics back down. But in a story told by legendary writer and activist Mehrangiz Kar, women’s rights erode one by one – leading us to the nationwide ban on women at stadiums. This is when Iran's national soccer stadium becomes a battleground. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Dec 8, 2022
28 min
PINK CARD Episode 3: The White Scarves
One game sets off a movement. In 1997 Iran surprisingly makes the World Cup in the last three minutes of play against Australia. When Iran's national team gets helicoptered into Azadi Stadium to celebrate, women are asked to stay home. They don't listen, and thousands rush the stadium. This is the origin story of the White Scarves, a group that uses international soccer matches to defy the regime and take back their country. As the White Scarves gain international fame, they face grave danger at home. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Dec 8, 2022
41 min
PINK CARD Episode 4: Blue Girl
(Warning: this episode includes description of a suicide). The newest generation of Iranian girl soccer fans take a bold new approach. They cross-dress as men to sneak into Azadi Stadium, documenting their rebellion live on social media - an irreverent middle finger to the government. One of those girls is Zeinab Sahafy, from Episode 1. One night four of her friends are arrested and she flees for her life. Another girl, still in the country, loses her life. In a moment described as “a miracle,” Iran’s regime relents on its ban and thousands of women enter the stadium. We end Pink Card wondering how this hard-won slice of freedom connects to the 2022 historic protests and a possible new revolution, more than 40 years after Shima’s teenage mother left home. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Dec 8, 2022
39 min
In Iran, women are banned from soccer stadiums. But some dare to defy that. From 30 for 30 Podcasts, Pink Card tells a story of Iranian women fighting for their rights across three generations. They use ingenious tactics and risk their lives to take back their stadiums and their joy in the game. Created by Shima Oliaee (Dolly Parton’s America, Radiolab), Pink Card will forever change how you see fandom and freedom. Available December 8th. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Nov 28, 2022
2 min
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