Staff Directory 10646006

Jim Souhan

Columnist | Sports
Phone: 612-673-4503
Location: Minneapolis
Other languages: None

Jim Souhan is a sports columnist for the Star Tribune. He has worked at the paper since 1990, previously covering the Twins and Vikings.

Souhan was Sports Editor of his high school paper at Vianney in St. Louis. He wrote and edited for the Missourian at the University of Missouri, where he earned a journalism degree with an emphasis on American literature.
Recent content from Jim Souhan
Souhan: Ranking NFL quarterbacks, from franchises to compromises

Souhan: Ranking NFL quarterbacks, from franchises to compromises

NFL teams can win Super Bowls without great quarterbacks, but it doesn't happen often. Given that history, the Vikings are in long-term trouble.
Gophers tight end Ko Kieft (42) reacted after scoring a touchdown on a reception during the first half.

Souhan: One loss doesn't mean Gophers can't dominate this market

The Vikings are down. Most others are out. So even with Saturday night's loss, the Gophers still could become the preeminent sports team in the state of Minnesota.
Vikings general manager Rick Spielman (left) and head coach Mike Zimmer.

Souhan: If Vikings rebuild, should Spielman and Zimmer be in charge?

Decisions made on Kirk Cousins, Dalvin Cook and Yannick Ngakoue aren't looking good. So it's fair to question if the current Vikings general manager and coach should be making decisions for the future.
Anthony Barr, left, and Kirk Cousins after the Vikings’ playoff win in New Orleans in January.

Souhan: Did a playoff victory actually doom the Vikings' future?

Who deserves the blame for the Vikings' 1-5 record and seemingly dismal future? Here's a nomination for an unlikely candidate.
Jacob Tuioti-Mariner (91) of the Falcons deflects a pass by Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins that was intercepted in the second quarter

Souhan: Far from a cure, Cousins is what ails the Vikings

On Sunday vs. Atlanta, the Vikings produced the kind of performance that gets coaches fired and quarterbacks benched.
Star Tribune sports columnist Sid Hartman welcomed Kevin Garnett back to the Twins Cities in 2015

Souhan: Sid was a true original, and he was ours

In a profession that at least pretends to value objectivity and professional distance, Sid Hartman was a fan who owned valuable real estate in the region's biggest newspaper.
Mike Zimmer’s decision to go for a first down against Seattle might well have been rooted in trust in his Vikings players.

Souhan: Zimmer trusted his gut on fourth down vs. Seattle — justifiably

There has to be room in sports for human intuition, and for leaders who know their players. Mike Zimmer's late-game decision in the Vikings' loss to Seattle last Sunday sparked a week's worth of second-guessing.
In one of only two NFL games played on a Tuesday in the past 70 years, backup quarterback Joe Webb (14) led the Vikings past the Eagles 24-14 in Phila

Souhan: More NFL games on Tuesdays? Bring 'em on

The pandemic has induced sports chaos anyway, so the midweek experiment might as well continue even if coaches crave routine and regimentation.
LeBron James (23) of the Lakers is silhouetted during introductions before Game 6 of the NBA Finals against the Miami Heat on Sunday in Lake Buena Vis

Souhan: LeBron is the greatest ... for these strange, polarized times

Two players rose above all others in the Florida bubbles: Breanna Stewart of the Seattle Storm and James. Both led their teams to championships. Both could at some point be regarded as the best to ever play the game.
Devan Dubnyk, Jason Zucker (bottom left) and Eric Staal (bottom right) are among the players that general manager Bill Guerin has sent away from the W

Souhan: Guerin has broken up Wild without much to show for it

GM Bill Guerin's moves so far have in common: He has rid the Wild of some of their best people and personalities without receiving much in return.
Twins rookie Alex Kirilloff got his first hit in the fourth innin and could be part of the team's improvement in 2021 and beyond.

Souhan: Ending playoff failure era may best be a job for youngest Twins

Many fans may again demand that the Twins fix all of their problems with one, flashy free agent signing. But the answer to this team's problems could reside within the organization.
Twins pitcher Jose Berrios in the dugout after finishing the fifth inning.

Souhan: Quick hook for starters leads to quick exit from playoffs

Do not let the oddities of this short, strange season distract you from the fact this was the most embarrassing loss of the Twins' record-breaking postseason losing streak.
Nelson Cruz's RBI double in the third inning Tuesday was one of the few offensive bright spots for the Twins against the Astros in Game 1 of the teams

Souhan: Playoff pressure continues causing offense to disappear

In dropping yet another postseason game, the Twins showed once again that the stage lights are too bright for their wide eyes when the games matter most.
Kenta Maeda’s emergence as a prospective ace, combined with Jose Berrios’ late-season resurgence, might give the Twins their best one-two postseas

Souhan: Karma is a pitch for Twins' and Houston's playoff fortunes

The Twins' starting rotation, as underwhelming as it might seem to many fans, might be the deepest they have had entering a postseason since 1991.
Twins players gathered on the field for a team photo with the AL Central championship banner.

Souhan: To erase past playoff debacles, Twins must draw on mental toughness

Twins players acknowledged their division title and home playoff berth in muted fashion Sunday, intent on bringing about bigger and better celebrations in the days ahead.
Twins second baseman Luis Arráez, smiling above on a double, is one of several Twins dealing with injuries. So, too, are Byron Buxton, Josh Donaldson

Souhan: Badly timed injuries could continue Twins' playoff curse

Luis Arraez returned to the Twins lineup Saturday and gave it a spark, but other key players were still out.
Seattle forward Breanna Stewart tried to get around Lynx defender Napheesa Collier on Tuesday night.

Souhan: Collier plays like a superstar as Lynx almost pull off shocker

At one point in the fourth quarter, Napheesa Collier blocked three shots by Seattle superstar Breanna Stewart in quick succession.
Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins looked up at a replay on the scoreboard during Sunday’s game at Indianapolis.

Souhan: Prep football on way back, Kirk Cousins on way down

A lot of news to catch up on, including the very quick and sudden end to the Vikings season and the belated start of high school football.
The Vikings need new arrival Yannick Ngakoue to put pressure on Colts quarter Philip Rivers on Sunday.

Souhan: Ngakoue arrives just in time to save Vikings' season

If we were going to identify the most pivotal non-quarterback in Sunday's Vikings game at Indianapolis, it might be Yannick Ngakoue, the lone blue-chip defensive lineman.
Lynx players celebrated the end of their one-point playoff victory over the Mercury on Thursday night in Bradenton, Fla.

Souhan: 'I didn't want to go home' more than just words from Sims

Odyssey Sims gave birth to her son in April and planned not to play this season. She changed her mind, and changed the Lynx's prospects for success.
Vikings players stood for a special presentation and a tribute to George Floyd before the start of Sunday's game.

Souhan: Despite its words, NFL still lacks credibility on racism

This is why the NFL lacks credibility: Anyone can mouth a phrase or paint a slogan.
Souhan: Vikings, Packers take different approaches to star players

Souhan: Vikings, Packers take different approaches to star players

The Vikings on Saturday made a huge investment in star running back Dalvin Cook, while Green Bay sent Aaron Rodgers mixed messages this offseason.
Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson scrambles against the Kansas City Chiefs in the second half Thursday.

Souhan: more Lamars and Deshauns, fewer Kirks and Toms will define this NFL season

Quarterback play has never been better in the NFL, for a number of good and heartening reasons.
Odyssey Sims of the Lynx

Souhan: Lynx have right stuff to make a WNBA playoff run

One of the reasons the Lynx boast so many possible WNBA award candidates is their ability to hang around the top of the league without their departed stars and their currently injured star — center Sylvia Fowles.
The Twins' Eddie Rosario was tagged out by Tigers catcher Grayson Greiner in the fifth inning Sunday.

Souhan: Picture not always rosy when it comes to Twins' Rosario

Somehow, Eddie Rosario went 2-for-4 with a home run and a walk and yet had a bad game because of other misadventures.
Souhan: From Wolves to NBA playoff teams: 'You're welcome'

Souhan: From Wolves to NBA playoff teams: 'You're welcome'

The Wolves' draft decisions have created something of a reverse curse in the NBA. Since Dallas won the NBA title in 2011, every NBA champion except once has featured a Wolves connection or benefited from a Wolves draft-day decision.
Byron Buxton hit a single in the seventh inning on Tuesday.

Souhan: Twins' ability to bounce back from adversity might be best trait

We might never see this team whole. But we might have already witnessed the most important bounce-back games of the season.
Vikings coach Mike Zimmer

Souhan: Vikings managing array of on-field crises beyond virus

Without a normal offseason or training camp, and without preseason games, the Vikings will be trying to douse fires at a handful of key positions.
The Vikings probably will push to sign defensive end Yannick Ngakoue (left) to a long-term contract, but that might prevent them from doing the same w

Souhan: Trade benefits Vikings both obviously and cynically

The Vikings aren't in the business of paying players what they "deserve." They are in the business of winning games while staying under the salary cap, and defensive end Yannick Ngakoue's arrival could mean the end of meaningful long-term negotiations with running back Dalvin Cook.
Vikings coach Mike Zimmer took to the field as the Vikings practiced at U.S. Bank Stadium on Friday.

Souhan: White men in power using their influence to combat racism

The power structure, for once, is paying it forward.
Members of the Milwaukee Bucks read a statement outside fo their locker room in Lake Buenavista, Fla., on Wednesday evening.

Souhan: Athletes threaten bosses' money as they sit out for justice

Black athletes have raised fists and boycotted anthems and broadcast their grief, but sadly they may never have mattered as much, in terms of social impact, as they did on Wednesday.
Souhan: Lynx, Twins lead the league in vulnerability

Souhan: Lynx, Twins lead the league in vulnerability

By admitting what they don't know and valuing input from employees at all levels, the Lynx's Cheryl Reeve and the Twins' Derek Falvey have built successful and progressive franchises in a complicated modern sports culture.
Lynx rookie Crystal Dangerfield

Souhan: Lynx keep winning with big contributions, not big names

Cheryl Reeve's work as Lynx general manager the past two years has allowed her to survive as a coach in the post-Maya Moore franchise mode.
Wild goalie Devan Dubnyk and Zach Parise celebrated at the end of a game in 2015.

Souhan: Moving Parise and keeping Dubnyk might help Wild

What Wild GM Bill Guerin does with Zach Parise and Devan Dubnyk this offseason will be telling, and perhaps pivotal for the team's future success.
Athletics director Mark Coyle and University of Minnesota president Joan Gabel

Souhan: Voices of reason, not greed, led to right call by Big Ten's leaders

As college football goes on hiatus, it's not hard to separate the adults from the children. Most of the latter are highly paid college football coaches.
New interim WBA champion Jamal James often trains at Bde Maka Ska Park in Minneapolis.

Souhan: New world champ from Minneapolis fights for title and for justice

As he returns to Minneapolis from Los Angeles with an interim World Boxing Association welterweight title, Jamal James is seeking "change as a society and a nation as a whole."
The Wild's Matt Dumba stands with fist raised during the national anthem before taking on the Canucks on Thursday night.

Souhan: Given chance to show unity with Dumba, players stumble

Matt Dumba stood alone in an arena and before the sports world, asking for equality and awareness, raising a fist to protest racism. His teammates and the NHL left him hanging.
Souhan: Minneapolis boxer James finally gets his shot at a title

Souhan: Minneapolis boxer James finally gets his shot at a title

Saturday night in Los Angeles, Jamal James will fight for the WBA interim welterweight title. For years, James' slogan has been: "Where's my belt?" Now, finally, it is an uppercut away.
Gophers wide receiver Rashod Bateman

Souhan: By sitting out, Bateman making best choice for health, future

The only tangible value for athletes playing college football for free is to audition for the NFL, and Rashod Bateman already nailed his audition.
(Clockwise from left) Sergio Romo, Tyler Clippard and Devin Smeltzer were three of the Twins' six relievers who held Cleveland to two hits in a 3-1 vi

Souhan: Twins bullpen transformed from a liability to a strength

Last summer, when the Twins' bullpen was getting knocked around, the team started a flurry of moves that has paid off very well.
NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman

Souhan: Props to Bettman and the NHL for saving the season

Six months ago, the NHL seemed a long shot to become a model for COVID protocols. In an upset, the NHL is now winning the dangerous game of responsibly returning to action.
Twins pitcher Jose Berrios, right, gets a mound visit from pitching coach Wes Johnson after giving up a two-run home run to Cleveland's Francisco Lind

Souhan: In battle of No. 1 starters, true ace is not Twins' Berrios

Jose Berrios is a two-time All-Star, a maniacal worker, a career overachiever and the ace of a team coming off a 101-victory season. But he still has a lot to prove.
Twins second baseman Luis Arraez was safe scoring on a Byron Buxton single in the second inning.

Souhan: Aesthetic Arraez has spark to lead off for Twins' Bomba Squad

Even in the launch-angle era, there remains value in a leadoff hitter who wears down pitchers and gets on base. Last year, Arraez had the best on-base percentage of any Twins regular, at .399.
Tony Finau teed off on the second hole during the final round of the 3M Open on Sunday at TPC Twin Cities. Finau recorded his 25th top-eight finish si

Souhan: Finau fails again by slipping into Sunday worst at 3M Open

He's a Ryder Cup player ranked 17th in the world, but when it comes time to win, he's more choker than closer.
Cameron Tringale hits on the 18th fairway during the third round of the John Deere Classic last July

Souhan: Tringale, with a 63 at the 3M Open, reminds us of realities

The world is loaded with excellent golfers, and it's a very close call who will win and why. Just ask Cameron Tringale.
Matthew Wolff plays a shot from a bunker on the 12th hole during the second round of the 3M Open

Souhan: Wolff's confidence, crazy swing propel him to 3M Open success

Matthew Wolff, the defending 3M Open champion, is comfortable at TPC Twin Cities, and he's in contention again.
Tony Finau, who played on several of the minor pro tours, is 17th in the world now and is among the 3M Open leaders.

Souhan: Finau's polished swing has come a long way from the garage

Learning the game of golf in a garage produced Tony Finau's remarkably compact yet powerful swing. It was on point Thursday, leading him to a 6-under 65.
Twins catcher Mitch Garver

Secret to Mitch Garver's power? Crushing it with science

Mitch Garver blended science, baseball analytics and common sense to devise an approach that produced 31 home runs in only 311 at-bats last year.
Souhan: What I watched during the quarantine of 2020

Souhan: What I watched during the quarantine of 2020

Quarantine has created the opportunity and isolation for new diversions as live sports slowly return to our lives.
Rogers Place, the home ice of the NHL's Edmonton Oilers, will be the Wild's new "home" for a postseason play-in series against Vancouver.

Souhan: Edmonton Wild could be what's cool this summer

This might seem like a strange time for optimism about the Wild as the NHL season heads toward a restart. But there are reasins to feel good about the team.
Vikings helmets sat on the bench before the team's game at Dallas last November.

Souhan: Fall football forecast sees maybe the NFL playing

Will there be football this fall? Should there be football this fall? Is football at every level below the NFL going to be called off due to the pandemic?
Twins third baseman Josh Donaldson celebrated after hitting a home run in a scrimmage at Target Field

Souhan: Twins are back at Target Field but nothing feels normal

The crack of the bat is supposed to be accompanied by cheers or gasps, not resolute silence. The final words spoken on the loudspeaker should not be "Attendance: Zero."
Patrick Mahomes, left, and Tyrann Mathieu celebrate after defeating the San Francisco 49ers in the Super Bowl

Souhan: Mahomes' megabucks deal a reminder American sports flush with cash

The measure of any large sports contract is not whether the owner can afford it, but whether it makes sense within the salary and payroll structure of that team and league.
Sports has given athletes such as Maya Moore and Colin Kaepernick an opportunity to effect change well beyond the court and field.

Souhan: Sports world finds its voice in difficult times

There are examples everywhere of people trying to effect change.
Inter Miami CF soccer players were greeted by fans as left leave their stadium in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., for an MLS tournament in Orlando on Wednesday

Souhan: Restarting sports in virus-deep Florida was horrible mistake

Sports leagues should have ignored the welcome mat offered by the Sunshine State.
Fans held up a BombaSquad sign during last season's playoffs at Target Field.

Souhan: 60-game version of Twins could be more dangerous

With ridiculous power and underrated pitching depth, the Twins were well-prepared to succeed over 162 games. As they begin workouts this weekend at Target Field, they may be even more formidable than they were a few months ago.
Designated hitters, like Howie Kendrick, will be used in National League games this season.

Souhan: A short, experimental baseball season? Bring it on

A universal designated hitter? Expanded rosters? Runners on second base to start extra innings? This MLB season could be loads more fun than the usual 162-game slog.
The work of Maya Moore, right, helped overturn a conviction against Jonathan Irons in Jefferson City, Mo. She was with supporters when she called Iron

Souhan: Maya Moore more deserving than Cruz for ESPYs' Humanitarian award

Nelson Cruz was a deserving winner, but the Lynx star gave up her career to dedicate her life to criminal justice reform, and should have won the award.
The Pohlad reign began with Carl, left, in 1984 and continues to this day with sons Jim (pictured), Bill and Bob. This photo is from 2005; Carl died i

Souhan: Pohlads weather storms to sit solidly in charge of Twins

Among many Twins fans, the name Pohlad is synonymous with cheapness. As the team prepares for a long-delayed Opening Day, this is a good time to ask whether the family deserves the reputation.
A protester in Detroit talked with Pistons coach Dwane Casey during a march on June 4 following the death of George Floyd.

Souhan: Ex-Wolves coach Casey lauds strong words from white peers

It shouldn't need to be this way, but having Gregg Popovich, Steve Kerr and others speak out has made a difference in the month since the killing of George Floyd.
The interior of an an empty Target Field, shown an hour before what would have been the home opener on April 2. Now, the season will begin late next m

Souhan: Owners to blame for baseball deal taking so long

MLB owners didn't want a regular season longer than 60 games. They slow-played the negotiations until imposing a 60-game schedule, finalized Tuesday, became more a matter of necessity than a matter of choice.
With any luck, sports fans will soon be able to watch (clockwise, from top left) the Twins' Miguel Sano, the Lynx's Napheesa Collier, golfer Matthew W

Souhan: The biggest sports buffet ever could soon be served to fans

If baseball owners prove they care about their sport and other things go right, we could be approaching the most saturated nine-month stretch of sports in American history.
A giant American flag was unfurled before the Vikings played the Packers in 2016 at U.S. Bank Stadium.

Souhan: A true patriot sees the American flag as more

It's time for Americans to choose: Do you care about citizens or symbols?
Carly Thibault-DuDonis gives instructions during a game.

Souhan: U assistant Thibault-DuDonis leans on family of coaches

"Family" isn't a coaching cliché for Gophers women's basketball assistant Carly Thibault-DuDonis. Her father is in the WNBA and her husband is the head coach at Wisconsin-River Falls.
Tiger Woods and former NFL player Peyton Manning celebrate defeating Phil Mickelson and NFL player Tom Brady of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on the 18th g

Souhan: 'The Match' made in golf/football heaven should get a sequel

The made-for-TV charity event was gobbled up by fans craving any sort of live sports, but it was compelling enough with personalities, banter and insight to merit imitators.
The silent protest of injustice of Colin Kaepernick (middle, kneeling during a 49ers game in 2016 between Eli Harold and Eric Reid) made too many wave

Souhan: Strong statement needed, and Vikings signing Kaepernick would do it

Signing Colin Kaepernick would signal the Vikings care about social justice, and that the NFL acknowledges its wrongful blackballing of a talented quarterback. It would also make football sense.
An an empty Target Field on April 2, what would have been the 2020 home opener.

Souhan: Major League Baseball can't afford to take season off

If players and owners can't agree on salaries this year, it would be another blow to the game
Torii Hunter

Baseball was Hunter's safe haven, and he grew into a star

Torii Hunter listened to veteran teammates and slowly learned. He progressed from a talented youngster who couldn't identify the spin of offspeed pitches to a slugger who crushed them.
Torii Hunter

Souhan: Black athletes call out again for justice. Will we listen this time?

For many white Americans, exposure to what it is like to be black in the United States often comes through black athletes and entertainers. We should listen to them.
The Xcel Energy Center, home of the Wild, might be in the mix as an NHL Hub City for its planned restart.

Souhan: Restarted NHL season could play right into Wild's hands

Had the NHL stuck to the traditional 16-team bracket, the Wild would have been out. Instead, it will get to play a best-of-five series against Vancouver. Minnesota's players could have the edge.
Fuad Reveiz walked off the Metrodome turf a hero in October 1994 after kicking a 27-yard field goal in overtime to give the Vikings a 13-10 victory ov

Kicker Reveiz never made excuses as he found footing with Vikings

Born in Bogota, Colombia, his family moved to Miami when he was 11. A friend saw Fuad Reveiz kicking a soccer ball and talked him into trying football.
Darrell Thompson is a big supporter of kids and former NFL players who are at risk.

Souhan: Darrell Thompson expects Gophers to have even greater success

But the former standout running back is worried about his mentoring program for at-risk kids and troubled by the NFL's apathy toward former players with needs.
Wild forward Marcus Foligno (17) tangled with Jets defenseman Tyler Myers (57) during the 2018 Stanley Cup playoffs. Myers is now with the Canucks, wh

Souhan: Fans should enjoy any Wild playoff run even if sportstuff will be missing

Sportstuff won't return for Stanley Cup playoffs, but fans should try to enjoy the sport at least.
Wolves player J.R. Rider speaks to reporters in a hallway outside of the team's Target Center lock room in 1994.

Souhan: With more controls, 'Wild West' feel gone from sports reporting

Sports coverage will never be as wild and personal as it was when an angry Wolves player walked into the media room and announced he was calling his own press conference.
Troy Vincent, NFL executive vice president

Souhan: Ignoring blacks for top NFL jobs is racist and stupid

If you're not angry about discrimination, you should be angry about so many teams breaking the golden rule of sports. They're not doing all they can to win.