Word + Quiz: salient

Word + Quiz: salient

adjective: having a quality that thrusts itself into attention

adjective: (of angles) pointing outward at an angle of less than 180 degrees

adjective: represented as leaping (rampant but leaning forward)

noun: (military) the part of the line of battle that projects closest to the enemy


The word salient has appeared in 83 articles on NYTimes.com in the past year, including on March 13 in “The Luckiest Team in the Country Needs a Little More” by Billy Witz:

Greensboro has a 28-6 record — the best in program history — and finished second in the Southern Conference, behind Wofford, which was ranked 20th in this week’s Associated Press poll.

Did luck have something to do with it?

Miller, pulling up a folding chair before a recent practice, reacted as one might expect. He praised Pomeroy as “a genius,” expressed fascination with analytics and said there were others on his staff who delve deeper into the data to provide the most salient information about the Spartans and their opponents.

Then he assumed a defensive stance.

“I’m not a mathematician,” he said. “I’m a basketball coach who’s always trying to figure out an edge to help me coach better. But there’s never been anybody that could put a number on will and togetherness of group.