Chat with John Brenkus
Welcome to SportsNation! On Monday, Sport Science host John Brenkus stops by to chat about his Emmy Award-winning TV show.
Sport Science uncovers sports' biggest myths and mysteries by utilizing cutting-edge technology to measure momentum, friction and the laws of gravity. In addition to his role as host of Sport Science, Brenkus, a Univeristy of Virginia graduate, is also the director and creative director of all BASE Productions programs.
Send your questions now and join Brenkus Monday at 2 p.m. ET!
John Brenkus (2:01 PM)
Great to be with you. Excited about Sports Science this summer.
Plan on doing any Tour de France segments? Particularly energy expenditure during high altitude rides?
John Brenkus (2:02 PM)
We've looked at Tour de France riders before and may do a segment on them in the future. In my opinion, it's one of the hardest if not the hardest things to do in sports.
John, I saw Brandon Lloyd on Twitter posted a picture of his Sport Science jersey....what kind of work did you do with him? When will that episode air?
John Brenkus (2:03 PM)
Brandon Lloyd was a great high jumper in high school, so we combined his incredible hops with his athletic catching ability. It's going to be an insane segment.
I saw the article you posted on Twitter. Do you think we'll ever actually see someone run a 8.99 100 meters? Or is it virtually impossible for someone to ever run the perfect race?
John Brenkus (2:03 PM)
It's virtually impossible for someone to run the perfect race. We won't see it happen, certainly in our life time.
Do you think the best a human can do in a sporting event can be changed that much by something like steroids, or at some point does the body reach its limit no matter what is put into it?
John Brenkus (2:04 PM)
The body does reach a limit no matter what's put into it. Humans will never run a one second 100 meter dash. We can all agree on that. So there is a point where the human species as we know it can do no better.
Did you have Nick Wallenda at the Sport Science lab for that footage of him practicing his tightrope walk? If so, how high up was he?
John Brenkus (2:06 PM)
We did not have Nick in the lab. We analyzed footage. The walk across Niagara is pretty incredible, given all the complicating factors (wind, mist, etc).
In doing all of these segments for Sport Science, are you continually amazed at how much the sports world is run by science? It's crazy when you stop to think about it.
John Brenkus (2:07 PM)
We feel very fortunate to be at the forefront of the intersection of sports and science. Not too long ago athletes didn't think about their sports from a scientific view point but as technology has expanded performances have gotten better in a whole new world has been opened. We feel very blessed to be a part of it all.
what's the segment you're working on now that you're most excited about?
John Brenkus (2:08 PM)
We're shooting a lot of our NFL segments in the next few weeks. Always excited about the NFL but there are a lot of great Olympic segments, golf, tennis, etc that we also love.
Do you prefer doing segments were you're bringing in athletes to the lab to test their abilities or ones where you're doing more research like the segment on Butler just missing the final shot against Duke?
John Brenkus (2:09 PM)
We enjoy both kinds of segments. Each provide their own challenges.
how surprised were you to find out that the Hot Wheels cars only needed to go 48 MPH to get around the loop? I'd have thought they'd have to be going faster that.
John Brenkus (2:10 PM)
I actually was very surprised. I agree with you, seems like the cars needed to be going faster. But when you do the math, it's clear that too much speed would be detrimental. The fact that they pulled it off is pretty crazy.
I heard somewhere that it should be impossible to react to a 95 mph fastball. How can so many do it?
John Brenkus (2:12 PM)
It's not that it's impossible, it's that it's very very difficult. That's why if you're able to hit a 95 mph fastball consistently you are going to get paid a lot of money. One crazy stat to keep in mind, is that at 95 mph fastball is literally invisible, at least, the last ten feet to the batter. It's simply moving too fast for us to see. If you make contact with the baseball and think you see the ball hit the bat, it's actually just a mental projection.
Is someone on your staff a human physiology expert? All of the information you had on the Nick Wallenda segment in regards to the feeling in his feet reaction time versus that of the brain was very interesting.
John Brenkus (2:13 PM)
We tap into a very large pool of experts for all of our segments.
Do you still get fans asking you about the paper airplane record throw segment you did? That has to be one of my favorites. I thought it was the perfect subject for a Sport Science episode.
John Brenkus (2:14 PM)
I get asked about that segment as much as any other. I think people find it so appealing because everyone has tried to make a paper airplane fly as far as possible. It's pretty cool to see the one plane that has flown the farthest.
What do you and the Sport Science group look for when you're trying to decide what kind of segments to make?
John Brenkus (2:15 PM)
Really we are just looking for something that interests us because if it interests us then it will interest the audience.
John Brenkus (2:15 PM)
Thanks for all your support. Great Sports Science segments coming!