Articles matching tag: Football
- Column: NCAA Drug TestsJanuary 13, 2015
The short-handed Oregon Ducks lost to Ohio State 42-20 in Monday’s first ever College Football Playoff (CFP) national championship game. Two Oregon players, wide receiver Darren Carrington and running back Ayele Forde, were forced to sit out the game after failing drug tests mandated by the NCAA. Carrington tested positive for marijuana although Forde’s specific violation is unknown. The players were tested prior to the Ducks’ victory over Florida State in the CFP semifinal game the previous week. As with most things involving the NCAA, their role in the drug testing process is controversial.
- Column: Getting Paid To VolunteerNovember 25, 2013
In a reversal of prior practice, the NFL recently announced that it will pay 1,500 “volunteers” to help out at next year’s Super Bowl game in New Jersey. In the past, the NFL Super Bowl Host Committee has enlisted thousands of un-paid volunteers to assist with events during Super Bowl week. The NFL’s decision was prompted by litigation, a class action law suit that wasn’t brought against the NFL but MLB. After last summer’s All-Star Game Fan Fest in New York City, 2,000 volunteers sued MLB demanding reasonable compensation. While that suit has
- Column: Miami Bullying IncidentNovember 11, 2013
Although the NFL’s investigation of the relationship between former Miami Dolphins’ teammates Richie Incognito and Jonathan Martin is yet to be completed, here’s something upon which we can all agree: Racial slurs, physical threats and extortion are always inappropriate and unacceptable regardless of the setting, including among teammates on a sports team. Team hazing is a tradition as old as sports itself. Rookies are required to engage in such time- honored traditions as carrying bags for the veterans, dressing up as members of the opposite sex, singing their college fight song and picking up the check for a lavish team dinner. The overarching goal is to lighten the mood in the locker room and reduce the omnipresent pressure of winning, while building camaraderie and team solidarity in the process.
- Column: Washington RedskinsOctober 14, 2013
What’s in a name? That depends on who you ask. In the marketing world, names are part of your brand, who and what you are and how you are perceived. Brands have “value” that can be monetized. How much a brand is worth depends on your line of business, your percentage of the market and how recognizable you are. The Washington Redskins have been so named for over 80 years. According to Forbes, the Redskins are worth $1.7 billion, the third most valuable franchise in the NFL behind only the Dallas Cowboys and the New England Patriots. The team’s brand, which includes its name, constitutes $145 million of the Redskins’ value. Forbes estimates that the team netted $104 million on revenue of $381 million last year. It should be noted that Forbes is notorious for underestimating both franchise values and team revenues.
- Column: Fans of Losing Teams Gain WeightSeptember 8, 2013
New York Jets’ fans may be in for a losing season on the field while adding inches to their waistlines. A paper recently published in Psychological Science, the flagship journal of the Association for Psychological Science, suggests that fans of losing NFL teams tend to eat more than fans of winning teams. The paper was written by Pierre Chandon, the L’Oreal Chaired Professor of Marketing, Innovation and Creativity at INSTEAD Business School and his PhD student, Yann Cornil. It was based on a study they conducted of NFL and soccer fans and covered a total of 475 games over two seasons. To the average person, the findings of the study are wholly understandable. After all, most of us tend to eat more when we’re sad, stressed or upset. Impugning such conduct to sports fans may not be much of a stretch. It’s not difficult to envision fans of losing teams, despondent over losses, drowning their sorrow in an extra jelly donut while winning fans are too busy celebrating their team’s victory to reach for another slice of chocolate cake.
- Column: NFL Concussion Case SettlementSeptember 2, 2013
You can sum up the announced settlement of the NFL concussion suit as a win, win, win: for the players, the league and the lawyers. The players had no choice but to accept the $765 million offer from the league. When the presiding judge in the case, Anita Brody, urged both sides to settle the case through mediation she strongly indicated she would grant the league’s motion to dismiss most of the players’ claims. Additional pressure to resolve the case as soon as possible came from the realization that many of the players who stand to benefit from the settlement wouldn’t be around at the end of the litigation – estimated to be another decade, or more – had the case gone to trial. That’s why the settlement is a big win for the players, at least some of them. Many players need the money to help alleviate the physical and mental effects of playing a violent game. With 4,500 plaintiffs, you might think each one will receive $170,000 from the settlement. But the reality is most players will receive far less. The settlement covers a total of 18,000 former players. Individual payouts could rise to $3 million for dementia, $4 million for those with chronic traumatic encephalopathy, the deadly brain condition that has led to a number of player suicides, and $5 million for players who have been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, which reduces the average payout even further.
- Column: NFL CBAJuly 29, 2013
On the eve of the opening of NFL training camps, a number of so-called experts took the opportunity to comment on the CBA that was approved in August 2011. Their almost unanimous conclusion was the league took the players to the woodshed. Whether that’s true or false depends on the prism through which you view labor negotiations. There is little doubt that teams are making more money today than they did prior to 2011. The publicly owned Green Bay Packers, the only NFL team that is required to divulge financial information, had net income of $23.3 million in the two years prior to the current CBA and $85.8 million in the two years since. All teams are more profitable today than they were prior to 2011, due in part to increased revenues.
- Column: Sports Teams' Goal is to WinJuly 15, 2013
A mere two weeks after New England Patriots’ tight end Aaron Hernandez was charged with murder, cornerback Alfonso Dennard was arrested for DWI. The irony gave the media a perfect opportunity to deride the “Patriot Way,” a myth perpetuated by the team and owner Robert Kraft to suggest the Patriots were somehow better than other NFL teams. Exactly what is the Patriot Way? It’s the same “way” as any other NFL team, eloquently summed up by former Oakland Raiders owner Al Davis’ motto: “Just win, baby!” And oh by the way, do it at the lowest possible cost to the team. That’s why the Patriots drafted Hernandez in the fourth round after he slipped due to questions about his character coming out of the University of Florida. A first round talent at fourth round money was just too tempting to resist, the risks be damned.
- Column: Black Players in MLBApril 29, 2013
On the eve of the release of the movie “42,” the historical recounting of Jackie Robinson’s 1947 debut with the Brooklyn Dodgers, MLB Commissioner Bud Selig formed a committee to determine why the percentage of American-born black players in the Major Leagues has fallen by more than half, from 19 percent to 8.5 percent, since 1986. There is an element of irony in the timing of the release of the movie and the formation of the committee, both coming mere days before the NFL draft. The NFL and the NBA have long been accused of drawing talented black athletes away from the diamond. According to some experts, the instant recognition and riches of football and basketball, as exemplified by the glitz and glamour of the NFL draft, are reasons why black athletes are attracted to those sports over baseball. They may be right. After all, we live in an instant gratification world, one where riding buses for up to 14 hours at a time, playing before family and friends in small towns and eating three meals per day on $22 for 4-5 years – the norm for Minor League Baseball players before they reach the Major Leagues - is a hard sell.
- Column: NFL Asks Illegal QuestionsMarch 4, 2013
“Do you like girls?” NFL teams to players during scouting combine. Are NFL teams homophobic? It appears they may be, given the line of questioning engaged in by a number of teams at the recent scouting combine in Indianapolis. In addition to being asked if they like girls, players were also asked if they had a girlfriend, were married or had kids. The questions could be interpreted as a not-so-subtle effort to determine if players are gay. How that affects whether players can tackle, run, jump, or the number of pounds they can bench press has yet to be scientifically documented. While the questions weren’t necessarily “illegal,” both the NFL and the NFLPA issued statements critical of the practice. NFL spokesman Greg Aiello said, “It is league policy to neither consider nor inquire about sexual orientation in the hiring process. In addition, there are specific protections in our collective bargaining agreement with the players that prohibit discrimination against any player, including on the basis of sexual orientation.”