America - its all a bit odd...

American Football. WTF is that all about?

I've just returned from the US and watched the Indiana Hoosiers v the Tennessee Volunteers game, at the Jacksonville Jaguars stadium. The game is split into 4 x 15 minute quarters, with a half time show. How the hell does it then take 3 hours to finish the game?

The average time the ball was in play for was about 3 seconds; then the fat wheezy boys needed a break and would swap teams - rinse and repeat for 15 (alleged) minutes then they'd scoot off the pitch for a pizza and some chips. There is no semblance of enjoyment to be had throughout - I'd rather watch re runs of Noel's House Party.

How this can be seen as a sport, let alone one enjoyed by millions, is beyond me. The only sweat evident was from the morbidly obese spectators that were shovelling lard into their mouths as fast as they could.
It's oriented towards the TV audience, or more accurately, the TV advertisers. The idea is to create the maximum number of points in which to insert commercials for the minimum amount of actual playing of sport. I don't believe that I've ever watched a game, but I've seen bits of it while near a TV that someone else was watching. Personally I find it to be as interesting as watching paint dry.

They play a somewhat similar version of it in Canada, with different rules and a different size field. I used to have a book (lent out to someone, never seen again) which were the memoirs of someone who went off to fight with the cavalry in the Boer War. He mentioned that American/Canadian football was derived from rugby, but the rules were gradually altered in an attempt to make it more commercially profitable for the promoters (I don't know the details of how this worked in pre-TV days). This being a war veteran's memoirs, this chapter was a long moan about how these changes had ruined the traditions behind the game of rugby, etc.

About 20 or 30 years ago there was an attempt to start an even more tedious version of American football in the US, in a new league with a new format and new set of rules. This was apparently to be highly scripted like professional wrestling and not much pretence of sport. It flopped financially in pretty short order.
 
I would respectfully differ with you actually....soccer is quite popular with kids, but once past middle/ high school...looses its popularity. Why do you think the term soccer mom was invented?
I think there are regional differences in this regards in the US.
 
Playing Devil's Advocate compared to cricket:
American football = 3 hours, cricket = 5 days (or 1 day for the 'short' version).
American football = fit cheerleaders in skimpy clothing, cricket = old blokes in jumper and trousers.
Apparently copious quantities of beer involved in both so no score draw on that one.

If I was going to be forced to watch either then the NFL game looks better less tedious.
Root beer isn't really beer though... unless it's alcoholic root beer.
 
Soccer/ European football is a decently growing market in the U.S. now with more money being poured in and more people slowly getting interested in it....especially the transplants...and now there is a better pay off for the players and the leagues. Will it overtake any of the others big ones in a short time, I doubt it, but it's gaining traction...
 
I think there are regional differences in this regards in the US.
Agree - it's practically non existent in some of the flyover states, but in a lot of states, kids usually grow up with it till HS...I was a goalkie myself, or rather a nominated one, since I was a tall kid.
 

Joker62

ADC
Book Reviewer
I would respectfully differ with you actually....soccer is quite popular with kids, but once past middle/ high school...looses its popularity. Why do you think the term soccer mom was invented?
For porn officianados?
 
I would respectfully differ with you actually....soccer is quite popular with kids, but once past middle/ high school...looses its popularity. Why do you think the term soccer mom was invented?
Because if the term "Soccer Milf" was freely bandied around people would get upset?
 

Motaka

Swinger
Soccer/ European football is a decently growing market in the U.S. now with more money being poured in and more people slowly getting interested in it....especially the transplants...and now there is a better pay off for the players and the leagues. Will it overtake any of the others big ones in a short time, I doubt it, but it's gaining traction...
MLS is pulling more average attendance per game than the Championship here. Not to bad for a league that's only been in existence for 23 years.
 
MLS is pulling more average attendance per game than the Championship here. Not to bad for a league that's only been in existence for 23 years.
Considering there is only a pool of 66 million people in the UK to draw attendees from and the US has 329 million to draw from, the numbers aren’t exactly a fair comparison.
 
MLS is pulling more average attendance per game than the Championship here. Not to bad for a league that's only been in existence for 23 years.
The quietly whispered opinion is that NFL (American) Football has had it's day. There is much talk about the brain damage caused by repetitive head injuries and really, regardless of rule changes, new equipment and the like you will never stop the brain being rattled around inside the skull.

Anyway, footie/soccer, yes it is popular. The reason it's popularity is risong is due to the increase in stadiums and the subsequent increase in quality teams. Soccer was not aimed at the white americans it was squarely aimed at the ever growing hispanic and latino populations (south americans) who are as footie mad as any red blooded european. I see lots of the local Mexican, and other south american lads here in Texarrse wandering around on match day wearing the team shirts for their teams back home.

The big kick off for soccer here in the US was when Beckham was bought over to play for Galaxy 10 years ago. He was selected as an identifiable international soccer personality who would raise the profile of the game from a second rung sport to the first tier level. Part of Beckhams deal was that he would get to own one of the MLS franchises in due course. When the time came, and I am sure that the deal was hammered out well in advance, Beckham chose Miami which he acquired the rights to for a measly $25million.........which in my opinion is seriously cheap for what he got. Miami is about as hispanic and latin as it gets in the USA, you could not wish for a better demographic of untapped soccer mad customers directly on your doorstep outside of LA. Even LA itself has now got 2 teams in residence with their own local rivalry bringing to mind a situation similar to to that found in London.

Oh yeah, the reason the decided on soccer for the hispanics and latinos, well they are going to outnumber the white rednecks in not too many years.
 

Zhopa

War Hero
American/Canadian football was derived from rugby
Slightly more complex family tree. We have big English public schools in the 19th century to blame. Each of them had a game called football, but with little in common between the rules, pitch or sometimes even ball.

Football as played at Charterhouse and Westminster became Association Football (soccer, to our visiting colonials).

Football as (still) played at Winchester (edited to add: and its close relative the Eton Field Game) became American football, with a slight diversion into Canadian, on the same tight narrow pitch as at Winchester, while a separate version branched off to take advantage of the wide open spaces available down under and become Aussie Rules.

The Eton Wall Game went nowhere because it's just too ridiculous.

Football as played at Rugby became.... well you can fill in the rest.
 
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Slightly more complex family tree. We have big English public schools in the 19th century to blame. Each of them had a game called football, but with little in common between the rules, pitch or sometimes even ball.

Football as played at Charterhouse and Westminster became Association Football (soccer, to our visiting colonials).

Football as (still) played at Winchester (edited to add: and its close relative the Eton Field Game) became American football, with a slight diversion into Canadian, on the same tight narrow pitch as at Winchester, while a separate version branched off to take advantage of the wide open spaces available down under and become Aussie Rules.

The Eton Wall Game went nowhere because it's just too ridiculous.

Football as played at Rugby became.... well you can fill in the rest.
As I seem to recall it, the writer of the Boer War memoirs which I mentioned above attended a boarding school run by the Hudson Bay Company (Canadian equivalent of the East India Company) for the children of their employees (who at the time of his youth would have been scattered all over in remote areas). His perspective on how rugby ought to be played would likely have been formed there.
 
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So there's some things which those of us in the UK find odd about the US.

And vice versa, there's some things I am surprised about US visitors finding wierd or different about the UK. As always, stuff we take for granted or used to isn't universal.



And would you believe it, there's even some Americans living in the UK that actually seem to quite like it, even with the weird differences:


 
Septic. Where do you come from ?
Gouty. Hampshire
S.Oh you mean New Hampshire
G. No, old Hampshire
S. Wow there is an old Hampshire ?
G. Well there would have to be to be a new one wouldn't there
S. stunned and confused look.
G. Yeah, it's the same with New York
S. total confusion
Gouty changes subject

Ah the joys of rural Massachusetts
HeHe - I come from Boston Lincs and just outside is a small village called New York-septics just dont belive me
 
It's oriented towards the TV audience, or more accurately, the TV advertisers. The idea is to create the maximum number of points in which to insert commercials for the minimum amount of actual playing of sport. I don't believe that I've ever watched a game, but I've seen bits of it while near a TV that someone else was watching. Personally I find it to be as interesting as watching paint dry.

They play a somewhat similar version of it in Canada, with different rules and a different size field. I used to have a book (lent out to someone, never seen again) which were the memoirs of someone who went off to fight with the cavalry in the Boer War. He mentioned that American/Canadian football was derived from rugby, but the rules were gradually altered in an attempt to make it more commercially profitable for the promoters (I don't know the details of how this worked in pre-TV days). This being a war veteran's memoirs, this chapter was a long moan about how these changes had ruined the traditions behind the game of rugby, etc.

About 20 or 30 years ago there was an attempt to start an even more tedious version of American football in the US, in a new league with a new format and new set of rules. This was apparently to be highly scripted like professional wrestling and not much pretence of sport. It flopped financially in pretty short order.
Whatever became of the female version where they played in their underwear?
 
American Football. WTF is that all about?

I've just returned from the US and watched the Indiana Hoosiers v the Tennessee Volunteers game, at the Jacksonville Jaguars stadium. The game is split into 4 x 15 minute quarters, with a half time show. How the hell does it then take 3 hours to finish the game?

The average time the ball was in play for was about 3 seconds; then the fat wheezy boys needed a break and would swap teams - rinse and repeat for 15 (alleged) minutes then they'd scoot off the pitch for a pizza and some chips. There is no semblance of enjoyment to be had throughout - I'd rather watch re runs of Noel's House Party.

How this can be seen as a sport, let alone one enjoyed by millions, is beyond me. The only sweat evident was from the morbidly obese spectators that were shovelling lard into their mouths as fast as they could.
I'll be the heretic and admit that I quite like American and Canadian football (Green Bay and Ottawa fan). It's all about what you're exposed to that shapes your taste, I suppose, because even though I love World Cup wendyball, I cannot stand Premier League football, and the less said about the farce that's SPFL the better.

I should also admit that I'm a baseball fan too.
 

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