Al Hamnik is a Region native, born in East Chicago and a graduate of Griffith High School and Calumet College.
He's been a reporter and columnist in Northwest Indiana for 42 years and is a member of the Indiana Sportswriters and Sportscasters Hall of Fame, as well as a winner of the Indiana sportswriter of the year award, an IHSAA media award winner, a Corky Lamm Award winner and a three-time HSPA winner.
He's covered two Super Bowls, six NBA championships, the Pan-American Games, the Big Ten and NCAA men's basketball tournaments, championship series for both the Cubs and White Sox and title games across the IHSAA spectrum.
Reach Al Hamnik at (219) 933-4154 or email@example.com
LAKE FOREST | The Bears didn't want him to, Brandon Marshall insisted, and their star wide receiver held a rambling 45-minute press conference Thursday to "vent" over a documentary ESPN did two years ago and ran again this week concerning his…
This is the perfect fit, like pizza in college, Italian loafers on the Magnificent Mile, Jose Abreu batting cleanup.
Jeff Konopasek probably didn't know he had this many friends who cared.
The center isn't just a guy who snaps the ball to the quarterback, then becomes a human shield against defenders who want to do him harm.
Professional football has many athletes who already are living on the edge, who can't control the "neanderthal gene" we hear so much about.
CHICAGO | Shades of Mike Brown.
CHICAGO | You knew what Bears coach Marc Trestman was going to say before the playing field had cleared.
With a new Bears season set to open, chances of a Super Bowl championship are thinner than mission soup.
MERRILLVILLE | If you plan to be in one of the ALS "Ice Bucket Challenge" videos that have gone viral around the country, ask yourself this question as you towel off.
This is a great job, don't get me wrong.
If you're a diehard Colts' fan, you may be pacing the floor at night like an expectant father. Sorry for your angst.
The ball boys got more face time during Bears training camp at Olivet-Nazarene University.
Yes, it was just a preseason game, a glorified practice, and doesn't count in the standings, fortunately.
Back in the day at the old Halas Hall, wide receiver Dennis McKinnon drove a new pearl Lexus with his nickname "Silky" stenciled over both door handles.
LAKE FOREST | If there's one thing Bears fans absolutely must understand, even more than the weird spelling of Micheal Spurlock's first name, it's this:
Allow me to get something off my chest.
Matt Forte is a tough act to follow. We all know that. It's like prime rib and Spam. No contest.
BOURBONNAIS | Emotionally, Jay Cutler is flat-line.
BOURBONNAIS | Fans at Bears training camp say Zach Miller sure looks like a tight end. Unshaven. Tattoos. Tough as rawhide.
CHICAGO | The kid looked pretty good, didn't he?
BOURBONNAIS | Poor Jay Cutler. He must feel like he just had his wallet lifted at the casino.
Calumet City native Ron Loneski loved to compete, was absolutely obsessed with it.
Randy "Fox" Peters is having friends over Sept. 19 for some sports banter in his Munster basement, a converted Notre Dame football shrine that shames the campus bookstore.
BOURBONNAIS | Linebacker D.J. Williams is a pretty good football player when he's not suspended or injured.
BOURBONNAIS | When Devin Hester literally burst onto the Chicago sports scene eight years ago, media joyfully declared there was a new "23" in town.
BOURBONNAIS | Rookie cornerback Kyle Fuller forgot all about Friday's two early interceptions of backups Jordan Palmer and Jimmy Clausen, and that's good.
CHICAGO | It might not be reason to break out in dance, but seeing Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau smile for extended periods of time is so refreshing.
Steve Balash is a lifelong Hobart guy and you know all about these Brickies. They're born making a fist.
Carmelo Anthony lied. What, you're surprised?
I once wrestled a black bear at Southlake Mall. His name was Victor. He stood 7 feet tall, weighed 600 pounds and his breath could stop a train.
The black eyes are no longer purple and puffy. The fat lips have healed. The bloody noses have stopped.
There is room for others on the big stage. That's what makes sports so appealing. It's not a snooty, private club with VIP parking only.
CHICAGO | White Sox manager Robin Ventura says Seattle Mariners' counterpart Lloyd McClendon has a "fun" side.
Columnist Al Hamnik is on vacation.
I feel like the event planner who wished for rain.
Admit it. You love watching the National Football League because it's a brutal ballet of uncanny skill, bloodlust and fingernails-in-the-couch drama.
We all want to leave some sort of legacy.
You've seen the sequence over and over.
Glenn Robinson III spent Monday in Memphis, suitcase opened but not unpacked, having just worked out for the Grizzlies.
There was a conspiracy among some media this NBA season that was neither funny nor professional.
How's this for a Father's Day gift?
Scott VanderMeer has seen more of the world than American Tourister.
With all apologies to Skip Bayless, "my" San Antonio Spurs are in deep trouble now.
You can't fake it or bluff your way through the NBA.
Lloyd McClendon is like the high school driving instructor whose students can't wait to get their licenses and take off for the big city, eager to impress.
The stringbean with the ruddy complexion could play. Nice jumper. Good ballhandler and defender. And he was passing the ball to open teammates, long before Chris Paul's crusade.
LAKE FOREST | The Bears "family" was there for Brandon Marshall's Thursday news conference at Halas Hall. It was an upbeat, festive mood.
America, land of opportunity.
There is an Ed Farmer line about towering home runs that could apply to new Bears' punter Pat O'Donnell.
Blue-collar Whiting is one of those cozy cities where high school athletes often play three or four sports because the school is so small and coaches must share.
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How will the Colts do this season?