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Jim Brown is dead. I’m stunned and disoriented, despite the fact he was 87. I saw him do so many things I had never seen before or since that I always figured he’d break Death’s arm-tackle, too. Not even The Grim Reaper himself would dare front-up Jim Brown, lest he get trucked.

I saw the news push on my phone mid-afternoon Friday. I immediately had to visit multiple other news sources to confirm. I wasn’t sure I believed it.

Here is a rule I have always strictly obeyed throughout my sports journalism career. If Mr. Lilly says it, I believe it, and that is the end of it. Mr. Lilly has told me at least a half-dozen times that competing against Jim Brown was unlike anything else he experienced.

In a pantheon of athletic gods, Jim Brown was Zeus. Yes, absolutely, Jim Brown was the greatest pro football player ever. Yes. Period. There was a bigger gap between Jim Brown and The Remainder of the Universe than there was for any other man in NFL history. He made even great players look helpless.

And he maintained his aura of mystery throughout. You never completely knew where Jim Brown was coming from, or at least I didn’t. He was inscrutable, and was in some ways Duane Thomas before Duane Thomas was Duane Thomas. It was not by accident or coincidence that Jim Brown became Duane Thomas’ Svengali.

After retiring from pro football at age 30, Brown did more than dabble in the movies. He was a star, and some of his roles were groundbreaking.

Jim Brown’s impact on America was considerable. He was out-front and on the right side of many social and cultural issues. His activism was positive and often effective. He was also a disturbingly flawed and often violent man, particularly in his personal and family relationships. That violence was frequently directed against women. For that, he gets no pass from me.

But he was Jim Brown, and he was unlike anyone else we ever saw on a football field. I spent a chunk of Friday night watching Jim Brown “highlights.” A Jim Brown highlight was pretty much every time he carried the ball.

I’m still not certain he’s dead. I think there’s a chance he’s just getting up slowly, as he always did. And then…

There’s a 100-percent chance of rain for today’s third round of the PGA. The final 36 holes of this major will be a fight for survival.

The Celtics are not just down love-two. They’re down love-two and heading to Miami. And they have pissed off Jimmy Butler.

Now maybe I’m starting to see why the Steelers were so eager to re-sign Mitchell Trubisky to a new three-year deal. He will be a serviceable backup behind Kenny Pickett. But more than that, he will be a very tradable commodity, and his contract is etremely team-friendly.

You recall that the Buffalo Bills released punter Matt Araiza last August after he was linked to an alleged gang-rape of a 17-year-old girl at an off-campus party at Araiza’s alma mater, San Diego State. After a nine-month investigation, no charges were filed against Araiza. All evidence to date establishes that Araiza was not even at the party at the time of the alleged assault. Matt Araiza will not lose his freedom. Unclear is how he will fare in trying to regain his reputation and his profession.

USC athletic director Mike Bohn resigned Friday, citing “ongoing health challenges.” Yeah, the university got sick of him.

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Paul's Bio

I clearly have the attention span of your median fruit fly.Look! Airplane!

Sorry. I’m back.

It’s both a curse and a blessing. I’ve never bought this stuff about, “He who dies with the most toys wins.” But I do think that a wide range of life experiences helps us grow as people, and helps us better relate to other people. I’ve been fortunate. And I am beyond grateful.

I show up on time. I go like hell. I’m a good listener. I hold myself accountable. I own my mistakes. And I have a natural and an insatiable curiosity. I’m never afraid to say, “I don’t know,” when I don’t. But then I try to find out.

The flip side is I’m a lousy ballroom dancer and my clothes sometimes fit me funny.

Stuff matters to me. I care. But while I take that stuff seriously, I try hard to never take myself seriously. As a result, I have sometimes been told, “Paul, it’s hard to tell when you’re serious and when you’re just having some fun. Which is it? Serious or fun?”

My answer is “yes.” But I think that is a legitimate criticism. I promise I’m going to work on that.

This has been the quickest and strangest half-century I’ve ever experienced. During that period, I’ve been afforded amazing opportunities in news and sports journalism across all platforms. I have taught wonderful students at the high school and collegiate level. Always, I learned more from them than they did from me. I’ve been a high school administrator. I spent ten seasons as a high school varsity football coach. I’ve been an advertising executive. I’ve hosted nationally syndicated television entertainment shows. In maybe the biggest honor I ever received, I was selected by NASA to be “Chet The Astronaut” for the “Land The Shuttle” simulator at Space Center Houston. (All I can say there, is “Do as I say, not as I do.” I put that thing in the Everglades more often than not.) Most recently, I just wrapped up a decade as a television news director, during which time our teams distinguished themselves in holding the powerful accountable, achieving both critical and ratings success.

What does all that mean? It means I am profoundly grateful. It also means I’m ready for “next.” So here we are. Radically Rational. It’s an idea I woke up with in 2017. I scribbled “Radically Rational” on a piece of notebook paper and used a magnet to stick it on our refrigerator. I saw it every day, and it just would not leave me alone.

I am second in charge at Radically Rational, LLC. My wife, Jo (also known as BB), is the president. Clearly, I have failed in my attempt to sleep my way to the top of this organization.

I hope you will learn that I’m loyal as a Labrador. But I will admit that this doggie can bite every now and then. My promise to you? I will show up on time. I will go like hell. I will listen to you earnestly and attentively. I will hold myself accountable. I will never be the least bit hesitant to say, “I don’t know,” when I don’t.

But then I’ll try to find out. Let’s do it.