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Sports Then and Now


NFL Injuries That Will Impact the 2016 Season

Posted on July 18, 2016 by Scott Huntington

The 2016-2017 NFL season is fast approaching. The first game is a Super Bowl rematch between the Carolina Panthers and Denver Broncos, on Thursday, September 8th, and for most fans, it can’t come soon enough.

Before that, though, millions of fans are speculating on everything NFL: Who should I pick for fantasy this year? How will my favorite team perform? Will injuries wreak havoc like last year? They’re all valid questions that fans will be discussing until opening night and beyond.

While the preseason brings a variety of injuries that are speculative in nature, at least in terms of how long they’ll hold a player out, there are several injuries that have a high certainty of impacting the NFL season. These are four of the high-profile NFL injury names to keep an eye on as September approaches:

1. Sammy Watkins

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The Buffalo Bills #1 wide receiver is clearly a star in development. When he’s on the field, he’s electric. However, injuries have derailed him so far at times, with a broken foot putting into question Watkins’ readiness for week one. Recent news is optimistic though, as Watkins posted a video on Instagram of him running, while mentioning that his goal is to “get ready for the first game.” Even if he’s slow or a non-participant during training camp, Bills fans can likely expect him lining up for week one. Read the rest of this entry →

Vintage Video: Happy Birthday Barry Sanders

Posted on July 16, 2016 by Dean Hybl
Happy 48th Birthday Barry Sanders!

Happy 48th Birthday Barry Sanders!

It is hard to believe that Barry Sanders turns 48 years old today and that it has been 18 years since he ran wild through the NFL.

Seems like just yesterday that Sanders was winning the Heisman Trophy at Oklahoma State and then dazzling the NFL with his elusiveness.

After serving as the under-study to Thurman Thomas for two years at Oklahoma State, Sanders exploded onto the scene in 1988 with a mind-blowing 2,628 yards rushing in just 11 games. He also scored 37 rushing touchdowns and also scored returning both a punt and kickoff.

Part of the star-studded 1989 draft in which four of the top five picks eventually earned a spot in the Pro Football Hall of Fame, Sanders was chosen third by the Detroit Lions. He finished second in the NFL in rushing as a rookie and won the first of his four rushing titles the next year.

By 1991, Sanders had the Lions in the playoffs as they defeated the Dallas Cowboys in their playoff opener before losing the NFC Championship Game to the Washington Redskins. Though the Lions would make four additional playoff appearances during his career, they were eliminated in their first playoff game each time.

Sanders reached his zenith in 1997 as he eclipsed the prestigious 2,000 yard mark with 2,053 yards. After gaining 1,491 yards as the Lions went 5-11 in 1998, Sanders surprised the sports world by retiring prior to the 1999 season. He was less than 1,500 yards from passing Walter Payton for what was at the time the top spot on the NFL all-time rushing list.

Because he had just turned 31 years old and had showed no signs of slowing down, his retirement was quite a surprise. In some ways, it mirrors the recent retirement of the best Detroit Lions player since Sanders as Calvin Johnson seems to also be done with the NFL at the age of 30.

In honor of Sanders amazing NFL career, here are some vintage clips of his once-in-a-lifetime moves.
Read the rest of this entry →

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Vintage Video: Happy 50th Birthday MIke Tyson

Posted on June 30, 2016 by Dean Hybl
Mike Tyson won 44 matches by knockout during his career.

Mike Tyson won 44 matches by knockout during his career.

It seems like just yesterday when “Iron Mike” Tyson was the young up-and-coming boxer that many expected to be the greatest slugger in boxing history. Believe it or not, that was nearly 30 years ago and today Tyson turns 50.

Today, Tyson is known more for his movie and television cameos, crazy tattoos and occasional crazy behavior. Yet 30 years ago, he was known for his devastating power and a knockout punch that put fear in even the best boxers in the world.

In July of 1986, Tyson needed only 30 seconds to knockout Marvis Frazier, the son of former heavyweight champion Joe Frazier. Later that year he defeated Trevor Berbick to claim the heavyweight crown. He easily won his first nine title defenses, including wins over renowned boxers such as Larry Holmes, Tyrell Biggs and Michael Spinks.

His career and life started to unravel after his shocking loss to unknown Buster Douglas in early 1990. His nasty divorce from Robin Givens was a national story and he served time in jail for rape.

Perhaps his most lasting memory is of biting the ear of Evander Holyfield during their second fight in 1997. He fought 10 more times during his career, but was just 5-3-2 in those matches to finish his career with a 50-6-2 record and 44 wins by knockout.

Below are links to some of Tyson’s greatest boxing highlights.

Read the rest of this entry →

Summer Sports: Best Activities for Busy Kids This Season

Posted on June 27, 2016 by Brooke Chaplan

Kids-summerSummer has arrived, and now that your kids are out of school for the summer, it’s time to keep them busy with some outdoor sports. Their summer vacation gives them a well-earned break from books, tests, and grades, and the opportunity to enjoy nature and exercise will fill their time. Use the summer to get them interested in a new sport or hobby. Here are some of the best ways to occupy their time.

Swimming for Fun and Safety
Swimming is a favorite summer sport that can include the whole family. To build on your children’s comfort and skills in the water, consider signing them up for swimming lessons through your local parks and recreation district. Swimming is a fun sport for developing athletic skills and endurance, but it is also a practical skill that every child should learn for safety around bodies of water.

Enjoying Nature: Hiking
Hiking is a family-friendly summer sport that offers kids the opportunity to develop an interest in our natural world. Trees, wildflowers, and wildlife provide a hands-on educational experience about the environment, and the peace of the beautiful outdoors will build a passion for exploring nature. Structured hiking opportunities can include children’s camps and group nature hikes that will develop athletic endurance and outdoor skills.  Read the rest of this entry →

FIFA Fanatic? 4 Iconic Real-World Stadiums You Need to See Before You Die

Posted on June 21, 2016 by Emma Sturgis

FIFA1Football (soccer) brings out the passion in fans like no other sport. That’s why it’s called “The Beautiful Game”. However, very few stadiums around the world can match the atmosphere and history these iconic stadiums create. If you consider yourself a football fanatic, it’s REQUIRED that you visit these stadiums before you head to the great stadium in the sky.

Anfield – Liverpool

There’s no other club in the Premier League that can match the passion Liverpool fans have for their club. In recent years, the atmosphere created at the stadium has diminished sharply, but come derby day there’s nothing more chilling to the other side and fans than 40,000+ spectators singing “You’ll Never Walk Alone”. If the Signal Iduna Park can be renowned for its Yellow Wall, let Anfield be remembered for its European nights and Bill Shankly days.

FIFA2Estadio Maracana – Flamengo

On July 16, 1950, over 170,000 fans packed into the Mecca of Football. It was Brazil vs Uruguay for the World Cup trophy. The Brazilians were going into the match as heavy favorites and all they needed to do was not lose to win their first World Cup ever and do it on home soil.

90 minutes later, what was once a loud and boisterous crowd was silenced as Uruguay ran home with the trophy, 2-1 winners on the day in a game etched into the minds of Brazilians to this day as a national tragedy, forever known as the “Maracanazo”.

Read the rest of this entry →

30 Years Ago: Shocking Death of Len Bias

Posted on June 19, 2016 by Dean Hybl
Len Bias was an All-American at Maryland.

Len Bias was an All-American at Maryland.

It is hard to believe that 30 years have passed since that shocking day in June of 1986 when one of the brightest young basketball stars of the day was suddenly went from a sports icon to a national symbol for the drug epidemic that seemed to be plaguing the country at the time.

During his college basketball career as a member of the Maryland Terrapins, Len Bias was known as one of the most athletic and talented players in the game and was expected to be an impact player for the Boston Celtics, who chose him with the second pick in the 1986 NBA draft.

Instead, his shocking death on June 19, 1986 became the impact moment for America’s war on drugs and led to harsher laws that negatively impacted the lives of many low-level drug users, a disproportionate number of whom were young black men, who were suddenly faced with mandatory prison sentences.

Even though the Internet was still nearly a decade away, in the days following the death of Len Bias information, much of it proving to be inaccurate, was coming out fast and furious from a national media that was surprisingly captivated by the story.

Even today, it is not typical for a sports event other than the Super Bowl, Olympics or some other large event or a major tragedy to cross into the general national consciousness. However, because of the shocking and abrupt nature of Bias’ death and the fact that drugs were involved at a time when the national “war on drugs” campaign was at its apex, the death took on a larger than normal stature. Read the rest of this entry →

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