If only there were a cure for what ails us in terms of our love of sports and the mere fact that when something is awry we don’t always apportion blame where it ought to go .
It’s no use trying to make a case for an argument that there ought to be a playoff system in the world of collegiate football at the 1A level. It’s not as if differing parties in and outside the world of collegiate football haven’t tried to make a case for the change in the system. From Congress itself, to the well meaningful smaller conferences that make up the Football Subdivision (FBS) within college football. The BCS and its origins of the six major conferences are all joined at the hips on this very matter and will refuse to budge on this very principle. And it shouldn’t be surprising to any one at all given their reluctance to share in their bounty equitably amongst the smaller conferences. This is capitalism at its best and its very worst. And the morons who are out there who decry the effects of socialism ? Wake the hell up and smell the coffee !
The only way that change will ever take place is for the idiots within Congress to rescind many of the legislative measures that came into being that has enabled the BCS system to exist. And as much as it pains me to say this. When has anyone ever known Congress to do anything that isn’t going to be of mutual benefit to its very own members ? Need I say anymore on this subject ? Case closed !
OK folks, the US national soccer team has qualified for the 2010 World Cup to be held in South Africa. And while it’s a great accomplishment in itself. Let’s not be fooled into the thinking that they can somehow come away with the Jules Rimet trophy at the end of it all . As good as this US team is perceived to be , under their coach, Bob Bradley. The fact of the matter is, they’re lacking in experience and talent wise they are nowhere good enough to take on the likes of Brazil, Germany , France, England, Spain or for that matter, at least another half a dozen countries that stand in their way and their ultimate goal.
Courtesy of Fifa.com World Cup News
Donovan: The best possible start
United States legend Landon Donovan tonight welcomed the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa™ draw that pitted the US against England.
Donovan, the USA’s all-time leading goalscorer, has a potential head-to-head meeting with Los Angeles Galaxy team-mate David Beckham when the two countries open their Group C campaigns in Rustenberg, with Algeria and Slovenia also in the group.
“It could have been worse,” Donovan said after watching the draw from New York. “It’s going to be fun. Depending on where I play, playing against [Frank] Lampard, [Steven] Gerrard in a midfield against those guys is going to be pretty fun. I can’t think of a better match-up personally.”
We’ve just talked about being there and seeing each other there but I don’t think it entered our minds that we might be playing each other.
Donovan on meeting up with club mate David Beckham
“I’m excited. England’s a very good team and it’s a great match-up. It’s going to be very exciting. I think under [coach, Fabio] Capello, they’ve become a very good team. They qualified relatively easily in a very tough group and they’ve got players who play in some of the best teams in the world consistently.”
Donovan clashed verbally with Beckham earlier this year after the American questioned the Englishman’s commitment to the Galaxy and Major League Soccer following an extended loan move at AC Milan. The two mended fences over the course of the 2009 MLS season and combined to help the Galaxy reach last month’s MLS Cup league title decider, which LA lost in a penalty shoot-out in Seattle.
“We’ve moved past the things that we had problems with and now it will just be fun,” Donovan said yesterday. “The banter will be good, there’ll be some trash talking I’m sure.”
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Presently ranked fourteenth in the FIFA rankings, the US team has accomplished a great deal under Bradley’s tenure. And that is in spite of calls for him to be fired at the outset of the team’s quest to qualify for the competition in South Africa. Outside of the Olympics, this is the second most popular sporting event in the world. And with an expected worldwide audience to be in excess of one billion people watching over the entire duration of the event. Let’s just say that on the home-front a great deal may well be expected of the team. But reality will set in once they face their first real test of adversity.
The NBA and all that it means to the fans around the globe. The one thing you now cannot escape notice, is that for all of the soul searching and niceties of the game. It has sold itself short by continuing to market its stars , rather than also marketing them along with their respective teams. And while NBA commissioner David Stern will not admit to that very fact. He above all people knows this to be true but he’d rather let the status quo remain the same. It’s ‘the stars first and always’, teams will come in second when it comes to the marketing of its brand.
And while I cannot question Stern’s loyalty to the game or its brand. I have at times questioned his goals, as he sets out to achieve them. He’s undoubtedly the consummate businessman and at times he is willing to go that extra mile if it will garner him the additional exposure he craves. Let it not be said that he for one doesn’t crave the limelight just as much as the likes of Kobe Bryant or LeBron James to suggest otherwise would open one up to complete ridicule.
Under Stern’s tenure the revenues of NBA has multiplied by at least five fold and to where it is now a multi-billion dollar business whose tentacles now stretches across the globe and into almost every continent. Its growth in China , the Far East and now the continent of Africa has been staggering in its magnitude. And with the popularity of Yao Ming, the Houston Rockets, Bryant as well as LeBron James in China. The growth potential now becomes even more staggering, as does the further and future marketing potential for the NBA. As to the stance that the commissioner will take in his resolve to market his teams will remain to be seen.
And now with a number of teams within the NBA now having a commercial tie in with foreign investors. The game has broaden its appeal. But not to the extent where the commissioner is prepared to relinquish the reins to someone else. This is ‘his baby’ and one way or another it’ll be his until he either has to be dragged away kicking and screaming. Or quite possibly with his last baited breath he will give a final edict to a subordinate . Such are the ‘extraordinary powers’ that David Stern has over the game and in particular the NBA.
Teams now, such as the New Jersey Nets and Cleveland Cavaliers who are now either majority owned or there’s a substantial equity stakeholder in those franchises. The access will be given to them in marketing those teams in the countries of origin of those respective stakeholders. In the case of the Nets is in Russia and that of their billionaire benefactor, Mikhail Prokhorov. And it’d be remiss to think that the Russian won’t seek every avenue possible to market the team in his native country. How this might be viewed by David Stern is another matter entirely.
A simple slice of heaven Michael Jordan , simply at his very best. Absolutely unequaled amongst his peers past and most definitely the present.
The Michael Jordan era brought about a great many changes and advancements in the game. Some of it good and some of it bad ! Commercially it was a god-send for the game but at the same time ‘the soul of the NBA’ was sold to the Devil for a little less than the price of the game’s integrity and dignity. And that’s now something that it cannot recapture. But in terms of sheer entertainment value, then it was to Jordan and the Chicago Bulls that Stern and the fans of the NBA looked to provide them with a plethora of excitement and entertainment, at the height of those halcyon days where Jordan’s presence on an NBA basketball court was akin to an incandescent light. Nothing shone as brightly or has it ever since a basketball court in the NBA. And that is with due respect to the likes of Kobe Bryant , LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, Carmelo Anthony and others whom the league has tried to ‘sell us’ as ‘the second coming’ of Michael Jordan. And Stern may well retort that …’ there will only ever be one Michael Jordan. And that’s as it should be ! Let the others attest to and create their own legacy. And then when their careers are over , perhaps then comparisons can be suitably made. But over the course of Jordan’s retirement what have Stern and the paeans of the NBA simply been doing ? Enough already !
As I’d stated earlier the league has rarely chosen to brand and sell its teams. It has been primarily about the stars and their characters or persona . Call it what you will. But now in this day and age where it’s all about the player and the star, rather than the team. The selling point of trying to lure the fans in with the team concept is about as easy as trying to induce a child to accept an injection by telling the child that it won’t feel any pain whatsoever. It’s just not going to happen at all !
Jump on this bandwagon at your peril as you’ll no doubt be in for a ‘very bumpy ride’ courtesy of Brett Favre. Cry me a river, please, just cry me a friggin’ river.
There comes a time when you either choose to step away from a sport or you’re forced out. Well that’s the case that waits so many professional sports stars in their chosen endeavors. Some have gladly stepped out at the top , at the height of their achievements. Others less fortunate were either forced and sent packing , not of their own volition. So this is but merely a forewarning as to what may seemingly awaits Brett Favre and ‘ his usual play on words’ once the regular season is over within the NFL.
The formal announcement that he’s now signed and will be a Minnesota Vikings’ player. You’ve got to hand Favre credit where it’s due, as he certainly knows how to pile it on from his slop bucket.
Favre and his antics over the years are about as that welcoming sound of knowing that the mother-in-law is coming to spend some time with you and your spouse. As kind hearted as those words might appear to be. After a while you know in essence that they’re nowhere as sincere as the person is trying to make those utterances ought to be. It was Favre’s mantra in Green Bay with the Packers and elsewhere with the New York Jets. So what’s it going to be with the Minnesota Vikings , should they fall short in not making it to the Superbowl ?
Favre and Vikings’ coach, Brad Childress, have already vented their frustrations with one another this season. And last I looked, this was meant to be ‘a team’ wherein , Favre was brought in to lead the team to the ‘promised land’. Not essentially for Favre to do with as he sees fit. But since in the pantheon of Favre’s career, when has it not been plainly and simply put, not about Brett Favre ? He ‘talks the talk’ when it comes to saying all the right things concerning his teammates. But there’s been very little evidence to suggest that he is if anything but that ….a good teammate. OK, so he’s been given his due with regard to his heroics and the NFL records he’s attained. But in all honesty is that what he’s all about as a player ? I’d certainly like to think that playing the game isn’t just simply about winning and acquiring an abundance of statistics over the course of career !
And as I alluded to earlier if Favre and the Vikings should fall short of expectations. Then what will be the mindset of the player ? Will he take the now customary time away from the game , contemplate whether or not it’ll be worthwhile to make yet another return to the NFL after abruptly announcing his retirement for the ‘umpteenth time’ ? OK so I’ve exaggerated somewhat but it does feel like it , doesn’t it ? I know that the player has his ardent list of admirers from the fans in general to the undying man-crush as exuded by the likes of ESPN’s Mark Schlereth, Chris Mortensen and Merrill Hoge. This trio make the escapades of the two conflicted male lovers from the movie ‘Brokeback Mountain’ seem even less tawdry than first thought. And of course there are those who are none too supportive of Brett Favre. I think that this just doesn’t come down to him as a player but more so out of his actions in recent years. Were you or I, to carry on like that in our place of employment , we’d be shown the door by that very same employer with ‘due cause’. But yet I hear asinine attempts by many in support of Favre and his actions. It’s obvious that those individuals clearly don’t think about what it is that they are witnessing at times by an individual and would rather just offer up trite and asinine observations to begin with.
For myself, I just view Favre as just another vastly overpaid athlete who believes he entitled to far more than he’s due. Perhaps if he were to put himself in the shoes of military vet returning from the war torn scenes of Afghanistan or Iraq to catch a real glimpse of what life can really be like ? Then he’d see for himself that the whole world just doesn’t revolve just around him !
A much beloved figure within the sport but perhaps even more so amongst the fans of Italian car manufacturer Ferrari and their F 1 fans. Michael Schumacher brought Ferrari and their fans resounding success in his tenure with the team. He won an unprecedented 5 world Grand Prix championship titles for the Italian team in addition to two, with Bennetton Motorsports.
I’d long thought that the retirement of former multiple F1 world champion and legend Michael Schumacher was ‘a done thing’. But yet to my surprise the German race car driver has announced that it is intention to return to the sport that he once dominated so effortlessly more than a decade. And along the way he single handedly rewrote every single record there was to be attained in the sport of Formula 1 open wheel racing. Records which are unlikely to be ever matched for now or at any time in the foreseeable future.
Courtesy of F1 ( Formula 1)
After weeks of speculation Mercedes confirmed on Wednesday that Michael Schumacher will make a comeback to race for the team next season alongside fellow German Nico Rosberg.
Schumacher, who retired at the end of 2006, has signed a deal that will see him return to the Formula One grid at the age of 41, bidding to add to his record tally of 91 wins and seven world titles.
It follows a planned comeback earlier this year for Ferrari – the team with which he won his last five drivers’ championships – to replace the injured Felipe Massa. Those plans had to be abandoned because of a neck injury from a motorbike accident.
Now fully fit, Schumacher will revive his relationship with Mercedes, a company with whom he had close ties earlier in his career. The German carmaker recently purchased the 2009 title-winning Brawn GP team, retaining team principal Ross Brawn, who previously helped lead Schumacher to title glory at Benetton and Ferrari.
“Mercedes GP Petronas represents a new challenge for me both in a sporting and a personal context,” said Schumacher. “It is a new chapter in my racing career and I am really looking forward to working with my old friend Ross Brawn and my companions from my days with the Mercedes Junior Programme.
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I’d long maintained that when Schumacher originally stepped away from the sport. The yearn to return would be almost immediate but it would appear that I was wrong. As it took him just over a decade to the sport. He retired in 2006, having won 7 F1 titles , 91 Formula One Grand Prix victories, all records in the F1 genre. But now with his impending return to the sport , not as a driver with Ferrari, where attained the bulk of his success. He’ll return to F1 but behind the wheel of a Mercedes Benz. And for the German automotive manufacturer this has been nothing short of a monumental coup to have their fellow native driving for them. As to Schumacher’s relationship with Ferrari and what it might also mean to their fans. It could well be that Schumacher will be viewed as something of a traitor. Or perhaps, he might not .
As an avowed fan of Formula One , I’ve got to admit that I’ll now relish seeing Michael Schumacher’s return to the sport. When he first retired , it was felt by many that he’d left the sport far too soon. And that was even given the fact that he’d been competing in all forms of automotive sports at the professional level for almost two decades. His return will no doubt lure back a great many fans who’d withdrawn from the sport under a great deal of disillusion and resentment as to how boring and generic the format had become. Now with the return of its greatest driver ever, Formula One again has something to be proud about.
Well there you have it , my thoughts on ten things I’d like to see change in the world of sports. I’ve no doubt that you’ll also have one or two changes that you’d like to see take place in any one of a number of sports ? So by all means leave a comment as to the change or changes you’d definitely like to see.
NB Just in case you haven’t read part one of this article then click on the link provided to view and by all means do leave a comment concerning your thoughts on the subject matter. ‘Ten Things In Ten (2010) That I’d Like To See Happen In The World Of Sports …….click here .