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Published: Sun, 21 Jan 2018 11:51:39 -0800

Last Build Date: Sun, 21 Jan 2018 11:51:39 -0800


Vikings Give to the Who Dat Nation

Thu, 18 Jan 2018 08:44:53 -0800

Since Sunday Minnesota Vikings fans have raised more than $150,000 for the New-Orleans based charity What You Give Will Grow founded by Saints punter Thomas Morstead. Morstead said 100% of donations will go directly to Children's Minnesota to support their Child Life department. Early in the New Orleans Saints / Minnesota Vikings game Morstead was injured making a tackle that prevented a touchdown. Though clearly in pain he kept playing for the entire game which ended with a surprising last-second touchdown and a Vikings victory. Once the uproar subsided the two teams still had to meet on the field for one last snap, the mandatory point after touchdown play. Despite his injury, he was the first Saints player to come out of the locker room and back onto the field. After the game a Vikings fan posted on reddit the suggestion that they donate to Morstead's charity as a show of respect. They had no idea just how much would be donated or that it would come right back home. Morstead said "It's humbling to have fans from an opposing team doing something like this – it just shows that football is more than a game and it really is a community. Minnesota fans had no idea when they made donations that it would come back to their own community – but what you give does really grow and we're honored to be able to support the child life program at Children's Minnesota – this is what our foundation is all about."

Miro Dreams Of Footy

Thu, 11 Jan 2018 13:43:31 -0800

Australian Rules Football (aka "Footy") says that if you're athletic enough to jump up on an oppposing player's unpadded shoulders, land kneeling, AND catch the ball, they're gonna rule it legal. Miro Gladovic of American Footy Star has a dream: to take American football players who don't make the NFL down under to play in the AFL. Aussie Rules is not only played on a larger pitch than any other major field sport in the world, its analytics & data are truly next level. Also: 10 funniest moments in the AFL.

"Even if you hate football, you have to go to these matches"

Thu, 11 Jan 2018 01:57:53 -0800

For Hungarian oligarchs and foreign journalists alike, the best chance of an audience with Orbán is a visit to the Pancho Arena, which is why the car park outside the ground fills up with expensive vehicles whose owners are seeking proximity to power. "Even if you hate football, you have to go to these matches," said Gyula Mucsi of the anti-corruption watchdog Transparency International. "It is the only place that the elite are willing to socialise with anyone outside of their small circle. Big construction and infrastructure development projects and plans which require a lot of money are basically decided in the skybox." On this particular Saturday afternoon, a couple of hours before kickoff, Orbán's parking space was still vacant. But perhaps we would see him walking into the ground. After all, it is only 20 metres from his house.

The End of an Era in New England?

Fri, 05 Jan 2018 00:12:20 -0800

For Kraft, Brady and Belichick, is this the beginning of the end? Seth Wickersham of ESPN writes about the unraveling of one of the most successful franchises in modern sports history.

Who knows when Buffalo's Comet will visit us again.

Tue, 02 Jan 2018 07:44:29 -0800

"The Buffalo Bills haven't made the playoffs since the 1999 NFL season. Had they missed out again this year, their postseason drought would be old enough to legally purchase cigarettes, and it would likely smoke those cigarettes in order to take the edge off from all that Bills football. Buffalo's barren stretch is the longest such streak in North American sports, but, after a series of wonderfully unpredictable events on Sunday, it finally ended." I Can't Stop Watching These Buffalo Bills Celebration Videos (Deadspin) Andy Dalton gets Bills into the playoffs, and #BillsMafia pays it forward (Buffalo News) Playoff-starved Kyle Williams leads underdog Bills to postseason (ESPN) Last time the Bills were in the playoffs ... Tom Brady wasn't even feared by Northwestern (Rochester Democrat & Chronicle) Sorry, Seattle: Bills making playoffs leaves Mariners with longest drought (AOL)

Call Your Momma | By Gabriel Jesus

Mon, 18 Dec 2017 07:58:49 -0800

Whenever I score for Manchester City, my mother calls me. As soon as the ball hits the back of the net, the phone rings. It doesn't matter if she's back home in Brazil or if she's in the stadium watching me. She calls me every time. So I run to the corner flag, and I put my hand to my ear, and I say, "Alô Mãe!" When I arrived at City, people thought this was really funny, and they kept asking me what it means. There's a quick answer, which is that I love my mother, and she's always calling me. And there's a longer answer, which starts when I was a boy with a dream.


Sun, 10 Dec 2017 11:27:13 -0800

Jon Bois, author of MeFi-celebrated multimedia narrative 17776 and creator of Breaking Madden, Chart Party, and Pretty Good, has written dozens of pieces (fictional and nonfictional) about class, feminism, aging, sports, politics, wonder, education, and art. Following the jump, a collection of links. (previously) On feminism and inclusivity: "If this game really were as controversial and edgy as it purports to be, perhaps it would go for the gold and challenge its gamers on feminist issues. You know, really make them upset." On girl-friendly LEGO sets. On misogyny in beer ads. "'s a good thing the value of the dollar doesn't rise and fall by the spender's ability to comprehend what the hell's going on here..." "Meet 'Guy On The Internet,' Champion Of The Dullards." "He is thoughtless and gullible. He's firmly entrenched at the intersection of Mediocre and Cruel, which is just about the most weak, miserable place a person can find one's self." Or: "Internet misogyny as the trademark of the mediocre and boring." Defending his tweet "congratulations to the winner of this year's masters, a guy who thinks gay people are wrong": "Please be nice. There are people out there who are dislocating their shoulders to scrape their fingertips against what you hold, peacefully, every day of your life." On death: 30 feels old. "We aren't wired to understand death. Maybe if humans had to actually figure out how to be dead people, evolution would have wired us that way. But there isn't much to figure out. You just lie there and don't say anything." On capitalism and class: "Introducing a new series called "Poorror Stories," in which we tell tragicomic stories from times when we were really poor." On bad customer service. "Why Microsoft Office Costs $200: A Budget Breakdown." How much did you pay for In Rainbows? And: Survey results. Bois's defense of participation trophies (and of the inherent worth and dignity of every human being, and of striving for its own sake). 17776 influences, references, precursors, and callbacks: (Some mentioned in our 17776 read-along thread in July.) "What the heck is a catch in the NFL, anyway? An explainer" (previously). The Tim Tebow CFL Chronicles (previously). A much older, unfinished piece of postapocalyptic science fiction by Bois features prisoners amusing themselves by inventing new ways to play chess. The end of Bois's 2010 NFL lockout fantasia includes a Flowers for Algernon-esque diary entry from someone who's temporarily deprived of NFL games. (An earlier chunk of it also includes a "Chinese Checkers, but with football" game design, in case you liked the Game 27 chapter of 17776.) Fictional TV listings mention the entertainment of someone stepping on a garden hoe. "In the year 2030 there's going to be a "man has Volkswagen with 1.5 million miles" story about some old dude who still has one that works. In 2006 it took a bullet for him, and in 2017 he was stranded in the wilderness and sharpened the antenna to hunt snakes, which he got really good at because he played a lot of Snake. Book it." Also note the "Cops and Robbers" game that Bois recollects, which has a strong 17776 vibe to me. Why we would have destroyed Pioneer 10. "On the Internet, as on the planet Earth, it is stranger and stranger to find one's self in a place where no one else has ever been. These moments are finite and rare, and they should be treasured, if not necessarily enjoyed." Bois compares the Pioneer spacecraft with the institution of baseball (found via a Twitter conversation where he mentions writing that while outlining 17776). "Card Show, Episode 2: Jon Bois Finds a Hologram" discusses holograms and what happened to the dream of space travel. The most recent Chart Party has Pioneers 9 and 10 on a shelf. On government, and libertarians: Trolling libertarians: "[...]

A story with Russia and a lot of bed-wetting

Fri, 01 Dec 2017 11:56:25 -0800

The groups for the 2018 FIFA World in Russia were drawn. The draw was made today, and resulted in balanced groups: A: Russia, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Uruguay B: Portugal, Spain, Morocco, Iran C: France, Australia, Peru, Denmark D: Argentina, Iceland, Croatia, Nigeria E: Brazil, Switzerland, Costa Rica, Serbia F: Germany, Mexico, Sweden, South Korea G: Belgium, Panama, Tunisia, England H: Poland, Senegal, Colombia, Japan The long qualifying stage saw a lot of fan-favourites and regulars miss the competition. While the Netherlands missing a second consecutive major competition after finishing behind France and Sweden in the group stage was hardly a surprise given their erratic performances throughout the last two years, Italy finished second to Spain with a decent enough record, but the anemic performance from the group stages continued in the playoff where they couldn't overturn a one-nil defeat against Sweden in the second leg at home. The shock elimination - the first time Italy failed to qualify for a final stage since Euro'92 (when they finished behind the Soviet Union at a time only group winners qualified) saw coach Gian Piero Ventura being sacked and FIGC president Carlo Tavecchio resign. The United States bottling process was a long, convoluted one, losing a crucial game to Trinidad & Tobago, with Honduras beating Mexico and Panama beating Costa Rica, thus finishing in 5th place. It was the logical conclusion to a troubled qualifying campaign that saw Jurgen Klinsmann dismissed and Bruce Arena brought back, but even the rising star of Pulisic couldn't make up for the questionable call-up choices (including Arena's perceived nativism) and poor performances. It's a blow for US Soccer, who will have added trouble justifying the disparity between the support for the Men's teams and the much more successful Women's team (previously) while dealing with a financial shortfall for missing qualification for FIFA's main competition, as well as leaving broadcasters and sponsors with questions to answer. Another surprise absence is Chile - the current Copa America (and Centenário) winners being left outside the grand stage after losing 3-0 to Brazil in the final day, with Peru managing a draw with Colombia, sending them to the playoff by a 2 goal difference. The story gets weirder, as last year Bolivia fielded an ineligible player in their victory against Peru and draw in Chile. If Chile had not pushed the issue where the ruling bodies decided to deliver an administrative defeat to Bolivia on both matches, they would have finished ahead of Peru by a single point. Argentina also briefly tempted disaster, but a Messi hat-trick in the final game saw them jump from 6th to 4th and advance to the World Cup. With so much heartbreak, there were bound to be surprises: after reaching the quarterfinals in 2016, Iceland has become the smallest country to ever qualify for the World Cup, with an impressive end to their qualification stage that saw them top the group. In Africa, Egypt will return after a 28 year absence, so will Morocco (16 years) Senegal (12 years) Tunisia (8 years), while Nigeria managed their third qualification in a row. This was mostly at the expense of the more powerful West African powers such as Cameroon, Ghana and Ivory Coast. On Asia, there was little surprise other than war-torn Syria managing to advance to the 4th round playoff and only falling in overtime against Australia, who had to beat Honduras in the inter-continental playoffs to reach the World Cup. In Oceania, New Zealand easily dispatched their competition but was eliminated by Peru in the in the very final game of the qualifying stages, who returns to the World Cup after a 36-year absence. And for all the drama, there were teams that cruised to the world cup: Germany was the only UEFA team to win all 10 g[...]

Sports, eh?

Sun, 26 Nov 2017 16:23:06 -0800

One hundred years ago today, the National Hockey League was formed. With 5 of 6 owners of the National Hockey Association forming the new league, it was obvious what its purpose was: "It's like our old league except that we haven't invited Eddie Livingstone to be part of it." Meanwhile, right now in Ottawa, the 105th Grey Cup, the Canadian Football League championship, is turning into a bit of a snow bowl. Watch it if you can.

Maybe the worst thanksgiving ever for someone who wasn't a turkey.

Thu, 23 Nov 2017 11:02:56 -0800

"It all went wrong when Sanchez turned the wrong way," Ryan says. "That was the first indication that it was going to be a bad play. But we had no idea it was going to be a disaster."
- ESPN presents an oral history on the fifth anniversary of the Butt Fumble.

The Boys in the Picture

Mon, 13 Nov 2017 13:42:02 -0800

In July, 1990, photographer Peter Widing snapped a perfect shot of three young football (soccer) players. In 2006, his friend and colleague Christian Daun first saw and became obsessed with the photograph, half-joking with Widing about tracking the three unnamed boys down. In May, 2016, Widing took his own life, shattering Daun's understanding of things and sending him down the journey they'd never taken. By July, 2017, he'd found the boys, now grown men, and learned about where their own lives had led.

Cokers vs. Goshworth is a Barn-Burner

Wed, 08 Nov 2017 09:51:51 -0800

We've had Robo-Rosewater. We've had Robo-Romance (of the Harlequin variety). Most recently, we've even had Robo-Slashdot. But only now have we reached the glory days of what AI can bring us, with the Recurrently Generated English Football League.

Pentagons, hexagons, what's the difference...

Fri, 03 Nov 2017 15:21:27 -0800

Maths crusader and football fan, Matt Parker, has started a campaign to fix the football image on street signs in the U.K. which are mathematically incorrect. He explains here.

Mo' Wax + Nike = downtempo beats for shoe geeks, shoe worms

Tue, 31 Oct 2017 12:46:39 -0800

It's the mid-to-late 1990s, and you're a big shoe company, how do you get in with the kids to push more kicks? Team up with an underground-ish music label to make some laidback beats then get various sports celebrities talking about your shoes, and mix the two together, of course. This actually happened two decades ago, when back in 1997, James Lavelle's Mo' Wax label (previously) teamed up with Nike to make a CD to promote shoes. The result was seven tracks of uncredited vintage '97 trip-hop tracks (likely to be Rich File and Ils) accompanying by the chopped-up chatter of sports celebrities of the day Andre Agassi, David Robinson, Monica Seles, Robbie Fowler, Giacomo Leone, Anita Weyermann and Jason Kidd.

Corvus oculum corvi non eruit

Mon, 23 Oct 2017 17:33:29 -0800

Latin phrases translated into British football terms, for your defense against upperclass bullying.*
* interesting and useful for non fans too.

The Players' Tunnel

Thu, 19 Oct 2017 08:31:48 -0800

The players' tunnel at Stadion Rajko Mitić in Belgrade is infamous. Why? Experience the walk for yourself (loud volume!) on the day of the Eternal Derby.

"As a young footballer, everybody is selling the same dream to you"

Sat, 07 Oct 2017 03:22:14 -0800

Of the boys who make it into football's elite scholarship programme at 16, past PFA research has found that five out of six are not playing professional football at 21. The Guardian takes a look at the damaging outcomes for boys who wash out of the system. [CN: mental health, suicide]

Crack Pipe Stadium

Wed, 04 Oct 2017 07:11:01 -0800

Remember Rob Ford? Toronto's former crack smoking, drunk driving Mayor who, in 2008, was charged with assaulting and threatening to kill his wife? The current Mayor of Toronto, John Tory, thinks it's a good idea to name a city stadium after Ford. Ford was a volunteer football coach who was fired not once but twice for, among other things, making his high school players roll in goose crap, showing up drunk for practice and threatening to beat up a teacher. There has been an outcry, but so far John Tory is sticking to his guns.

football politics

Mon, 02 Oct 2017 12:05:33 -0800

(FC)Barcelona in the strange and symbolic eye of a storm over Catalonia "That identification with Catalonia, while nuanced, shifting, unevenly embraced, sometimes vague and often problematic, is part of what gives Barça an explicitly socio-political dimension. It comes together, of course, in the slogan: mes que un club, more than a club. And that meant this was always going to be more than a match even if in the end it was less than one.'

"I'm thinking.... I'm so far... from... the line...."

Sat, 30 Sep 2017 02:16:49 -0800

Poor Kristen Wiig. Every time she's booked on The Tonight Show she's bumped for other celebrities, like Peyton Manning, Khaleesi from Game of Thrones (previously), JoJo from The Bachelorette, and Michael Jordon, who are all definitely not Kristen Wiig in disguise.

Colin Kaepernick Has a Job

Wed, 13 Sep 2017 05:39:41 -0800

Colin Kaepernick Has a Job: Inside the past, present and future of this country's most inconvenient truth, by way of the most controversial black man in America

When the Levee Breaks

Fri, 01 Sep 2017 12:19:09 -0800

National treasure Spencer Hall's annual musings on college football. This year covering Hurricane Harvey, life amid racism, isolation within the crowd, and "an Ivy League bankruptcy case from Queens."

"Announcers are part of the industrial complex of college football."

Wed, 30 Aug 2017 12:53:35 -0800

Ed Cunningham explains why he walked away from a job as a color analyst for ESPN.
Football has seen high-profile N.F.L. players retire early, even pre-emptively, out of concern about their long-term health, with particular worry for the brain. But Cunningham may be the first leading broadcaster to step away from football for a related reason — because it felt wrong to be such a close witness to the carnage, profiting from a sport that he knows is killing some of its participants.
"In its current state, there are some real dangers: broken limbs, wear and tear," Cunningham said. "But the real crux of this is that I just don't think the game is safe for the brain. To me, it's unacceptable."