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Sports Then and Now



Intersection of Sports and Public Health Derails the Sports World 0

Posted on March 12, 2020 by Dean Hybl

Less than 24 hours after the World Health Organization declared the spread of the coronavirus to be a pandemic the sports world is coming to a screeching halt as sports leagues and college conferences struggle to deal with this intersection between public health and the sports world.

It started Wednesday afternoon with the NCAA announcing that all of their upcoming championships would be played without fans.

With most of the premier Division I conferences having started their men’s basketball tournaments earlier this week, it didn’t take long until they all announced that they would not admit fans starting on Thursday.

However, after a Wednesday evening address by the President as well as continued uncertainty on how best to address the growing crisis, by soon before game time on Thursday most conferences, including the ACC, Big Ten and SEC had all canceled the remainder of their tournaments. The Big East tipped off their first game on Thursday (Creighton against St. Johns), but the game and tournament were later canceled.

 So, what is typically one of the most exciting weekends for college basketball now looks to be an opportunity to catch up on shows from Netflix or Amazon Prime.

College basketball is not the only major sports group impacted by the growing crisis.

After two members of the Utah Jazz tested positive for the virus the game Wednesday night between the Oklahoma Thunder and Utah Jazz was postponed and the NBA later announced an immediate suspension of their season.

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Will The MLS Ever Catch Up With Europe? 0

Posted on December 02, 2018 by Amelia Rose

soccer-2018-2Every couple of years the MLS grabs worldwide attention with the signings of some major stars.

That started with David Beckham and since then, big names like Thierry Henry, Steven Gerrard, David Villa and Kaka have made the journey across from Europe.

This year has welcomed two of the world’s biggest names in Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Wayne Rooney, which begs the question, has the MLS re-found its mojo and can it close the gap on Europe in terms of quality?

More attention is on the league than ever before and with the season currently at the MLS Cup phase it’s grabbing headlines worldwide and being bet on more than ever before.

There are new betting offers every day at the moment with Atlanta current 1-4 favorites with bookie Betfair to earn their first, ahead of the Portland Timbers who they’ll take on who are priced at a generous 11/4.

This attention is only good for the league and will encourage more players to make the switch to the USA. Read the rest of this entry →

Beckham to Choose Between PSG and LA Galaxy 4

Posted on November 28, 2011 by Thomas Rooney

David Beckham has several options after helping the LA Galaxy to the MLS title.

The future of David Beckham has been much discussed of late. After winning the MLS Cup with LA Galaxy he has been speaking about his options and even revealed that he hasn’t given up on an England career just yet.

Speaking of England, if you want Euro 2012 best odds, try this site. However, it does seem likely that a place in Great Britain’s 2012 Olympic team is more likely for Beckham than a return to the England team.

It is his club matters that need sorting our first though. His contract with LA Galaxy is up next month and there are many suggesting that he could end his time in America on a high. The 36-year-old still wants to play for a couple of years and it is being suggested that he will look for a new challenge.

There have of course been many rumours about where he might go. Premier League clubs such as Tottenham and Queens Park Rangers have been linked for example, while there was even talk of the New York Red Bulls hoping to persuade him to make the controversial move.

One club making their interest clear from the start though has been Paris St-Germain. The French club are therefore thought to be the front runners and Beckham – who has ruled out a return to England – is now faced with the decision of joining PSG or remaining at LA Galaxy.

The Ligue 1 side are getting massive investment at the moment of course, with the club’s Qatari owners looking to make a statement of their intentions with the signing of Beckham. Read the rest of this entry →

Another MLS Near Miss for Chicago Fire, The Match is the Metaphor 1

Posted on November 15, 2009 by John Wingspread Howell

Eastern Conference Championship - Real Salt Lake v Chicago Fire

The Chicago Fire lost to Real Salt Lake in a shootout.

Bridgeview, IL November 14, 2009 – You can sum up the Chicago Fire’s season in this one game. You can sum up the team’s history, excluding year one, in this one game. The summary is this: outstanding defense, underachieving offense, overall game domination, tantalizing fans by getting within reach of greatness only to find a way, sooner or later, to betray them– and themselves.

After win streaks and losing streaks, the usual Fire roller-coaster ride throughout the season, this season looked as if it might

be different, as if whatever curse constrains Chicago might have been broken. After all, they beat the Revolution for a change, and found themselves playing in a Conference final.

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Eight Ways To “Americanize” Soccer For American Fans 11

Posted on October 18, 2009 by John Wingspread Howell

Most Americans only care about competitive soccer when it is time for the World Cup or Olympics. Would some minor "tweaks" make the game more appealing on a regular basis?

Most Americans only care about competitive soccer when it is time for the World Cup or Olympics. Would some minor "tweaks" make the game more appealing on a regular basis?

As Major League Soccer begins to wind down its season and Women’s Professional Soccer is two months beyond the end of their inaugural season, it is time to reflect on the status of soccer in the United States and do a little diagnosis and prognostication.

There are critics who assert that low scoring matches, ties, and no-scoring matches as outcomes that must be changed in order to save the American game. Some have suggested enlarging the dimensions of the goal, shrinking the size of the pitch, and shortening the length of the match, using PK’s as tie-breakers, and calling more penalties in the box as his key solutions.  In other words, tweak the game in order to increase scoring, and to eliminate ties as final outcomes.

The basic premise of such arguments, that soccer is not consistent with American sports culture in key aspects is a good one. Beyond that, the sport’s critics mostly miss the mark.

Changing the physical dimensions of the pitch or the goal, or the length of the match would diminish whatever international credibility American soccer may have, and make it more difficult for American players to adapt to the international game.

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  • Vintage Athlete of the Month

    • Rocky Colavito: Super Slugger
      March 30, 2020 | 7:24 pm
      Rocky Colavito

      The Sports Then and Now Vintage Athlete of the Month was just the fifth player in Major League Baseball history to have 11 straight seasons with 20 or more home runs, yet could not sustain that greatness long enough to earn a spot in the Baseball Hall of Fame.

      In some sense, the legend of Rocco “Rocky” Colavito Jr. began long before he ever started pounding home runs at the major league level.

      Born and raised as a New York Yankees fan in The Bronx, Colavito was playing semipro baseball before he was a teenager and dropped out of high school at 16 after his sophomore year to pursue a professional career. The major league rule at the time said a player could not sign with a pro team until his high school class graduated, but after sitting out for one year, Colavito was allowed to sign at age 17.

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