This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Melissa Block.
ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:
And I'm Robert Siegel. Last night, football fans heard a rare sound - fans cheering referees. The National Football League's real refs returned to the field in Baltimore, after three weeks of turmoil and embarrassment in America's richest and most popular professional sport. Sports writer Stefan Fatsis joins us now, as he does most Fridays. Hi, Stefan.
Friday morning quarterbacks seem to be unanimous in saying that having a "regular" crew of officials back on the field for Thursday night's NFL game between the Baltimore Ravens and Cleveland Browns made an immediate — and positive — difference.
This weekend, professional golf becomes a team sport. The Ryder Cup pits the United States against Europe. Instead of green jackets and million dollar checks, players compete for country. Today, the Americans will try to take back the cup at Medinah Country Club in Illinois. And joining us from the course, is Christine Brennan, sports columnist for USA Today.
One Last Strike is Tony La Russa's memoir of the 2011 major league baseball season and, in passing, a memoir of his very successful career as a big league manager. Last season, La Russa led the St. Louis Cardinals out of nowhere to win the National League wildcard slot, and then, improbably, advanced to the League Championship Series and the World Series. The Cards won the title in what was one of the great World Series of all time.
More than the ice is frosty at the Olympic Oval outside Salt Lake City this week, as short track speedskaters begin the 2012-2013 season.
U.S. skaters are split over allegations of abuse leveled against two coaches and a claim that one coach ordered the sabotage of a Canadian competitor's skates at an international competition last year.
This is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. I'm Celeste Headlee. Michel Martin is away. Coming up, we're talking with Olympic gold medalist Gabby Douglas. We'll ask the flying squirrel how it feels in that white hot spotlight and what kind of sacrifices she made to get there.
It was an iconic moment, really one of those amazing Olympic moments when a brilliantly smiling Gabby Douglas became the first African-American gymnast to win a gold medal in the individual all-around. People were amazed as she twisted her petite frame and flew through the air with both power and grace. It was the second gold for Douglas. She and her teammates won the team gold medal as well, and since then Gabby Douglas and the rest of the Fabulous Five have become celebrities.
We are pleased to announce this morning that NPR has ended its lockout of Mike Pesca. The network reached a deal with our sports correspondent after his replacement repeatedly confused adjectives with adverbs. OK, that's a joke, but in reality the NFL reached a deal with referees after the replacements made a series of brutally criticized calls. Mike Pesca has been following developments.
Mike, good morning.
MIKE PESCA, BYLINE: And that was a goodly decision. Oh, wait a minute. I've done it too.