Jon is a writer based in the Twin Cities. He is the founder of, and a staff writer for, Northern Pitch, Minnesota’s best soccer website. He writes the Soccer Insider column for the Star Tribune on Saturdays, and also curates SoccerCentric, the startribune.com soccer blog, and is one of the hosts of The Sportive, an award-winning Minnesota sports (-ish) podcast. He’s also written for the Minneapolis Star Tribune and the Minnesota Daily, and is an occasional contributor to RandBall. In the past, he’s written for Twinkie Town, Canis Hoopus, and really a lot of other places.

Here is a picture of Jon, on a party bus, with internet sportswriter Aaron Gleeman and a passed-out guy:

Party Bus


This is now the third or fourth incarnation of this site, and so this section is getting increasingly complex. It’s ridiculous, really, but here’s the story, told in the third person for no good reason:

In 2003-2004, Jon was a columnist for the Minnesota Daily, the student newspaper at the University of Minnesota. His very first personal blog was launched in April of 2004, as a way to keep writing. At the time, he thoughtlessly chose the blog title “The National Anthem Before A Cubs Game,” which was a reference to a Bloom County comic strip from 1984. This was later abbreviated as TNABACG, and as dumb as a title as this was, it stuck around about seven years longer than it should have.

This site started as an infrequently-updated outlet for angry ranting. It later became an often-updated home for Minnesota sports coverage, especially coverage of lesser-known local teams. But now, it serves two purposes: to link to writing at the other sites listed above, and to write about sports that are personally interesting but notable to almost no other regular readers. (Think rugby, and that sort of thing.)


• Jon can usually be reached most quickly via email, at jon AT jonmarthaler DOT com.