Appointing Moyes in his place removes both the first and third on the list of the Premier League's longest-surviving managers. Wenger goes top with 17 years, but there really aren't many managers with any longevity beneath him.
It feels like the appropriate choice, although it'll be a heartbreaker for Everton fans. Heck, I have friends who are Preston fans who still pined his move to Goodison back in 2002.
The Fergie Era warped time and space. Eric Cantona retired in 1997. I bet there are players on United's books now who weren't born then.
posted by etagloh at 11:19 PM on May 08
NBC should give up on the Premiership and just show the Championship - it's vastly more interesting.
I'm pretty sure it's the most competitive league division in Europe, in part because the competition is so desperate. As Mr B notes, a couple of months of bad results can take you from the top to the drop.
Right now, it's better to spread your ownership across Europe and take advantage of the looser loan classification, and adjust your squads based upon who's best set at mid-season. But how long, I wonder, before league rules are changed so that Premier League club owners can also have stakes in lower-league teams and use them as de facto reserve sides?
posted by etagloh at 01:19 PM on May 06
Will the quality of the game deteriorate?
Does that matter? Colleges still pack their stadiums and get massive TV deals. But by extension, does that change the calculation about the value of a college scholarship?
posted by etagloh at 11:12 PM on April 24
Man Utd clinch the title; RvP probably clinches goal of the season.
posted by etagloh at 07:02 PM on April 22
The Masters should move the green jacket ceremony outdoors so the fans at the tournament could share in the moment.
Yeah, right. If the Augusta National could keep the spectators out on the surrounding roads and still take their money, they'd do that instead.
posted by etagloh at 12:59 AM on April 15
This would seem to suggest that the rules are either very complicated, not well explained, or simply so numerous that it's hard to keep track of all of them.
Golf: the US tax code of sports.
posted by etagloh at 12:17 AM on April 14
Thatcher was inclined to support the "membership" scheme that would have forced football fans to carry special ID cards. Hillsborough changed all that; the families still want to know her precise role in the govt/police/press nexus that blamed that disaster on supporters.
posted by etagloh at 03:48 PM on April 08
101GreatGoals, better known for its not-quite-kosher goal videos, has a piece on the relationship between Liverpool FC and Margaret Thatcher.
No minute's silence in Manchester tonight for United vs City, either.
posted by etagloh at 01:35 PM on April 08
Why Rugby League is looking more like the NFL
That's one reason why I've tired of RL over the past few years, especially in its antipodean incarnation. If you look at the clips of Eddie Waring commentating on Wakefield vs Hull Kingston Rovers, you'll see a very different game from NRL.
posted by etagloh at 01:23 PM on April 08
It's a matter of degrees - $50-100,000 a year in tuition, room and board might seem like a lot except when you look at the sheer volume of revenue being generated by their activity.
"Shaq is rich. The white man who signs his check is wealthy."
The system persists because enough people first and foremost enjoy the myth of the true amateur, the scholar-athlete, and the transformative coach; as a result, they accept the "traditional answer" about scholarships because that perpetuates the myth. The mythology precedes the rationalisation, as it has done throughout the history of formalised amateurism in sport.
posted by etagloh at 12:32 AM on April 03
Bit snowy in Denver, then. Twitter collectively noted that the Nike hi-vis ball did not exactly live up to its name.
posted by etagloh at 02:18 AM on March 23
"A dingo ate my homework!" The cricketing bit of Twitter has been laughing about this all day. I especially liked the wag who said that Ed Cowan's submission had footnotes and a bibliography.
On the other side of the argument, Brydon Coverdale makes the case that the players deserve their fate. But it still feels like pretty ropey sports psychology.
posted by etagloh at 09:06 PM on March 11
And for those interested in the sharp-toothed pitch invader, it was a Beech Marten, which is significantly larger than your average mustelid. They apparently have a reputation in Germany for eating cars -- specifically, hoses and other rubber/plastic bits.
posted by etagloh at 04:52 PM on March 11
NASCAR is busily pulling fan videos of the crash that were uploaded to YouTube; they have a copyright claim on fan footage as part of the conditions of entry, but it comes across as knee-jerk suppression of a news event, not a sporting event. ESPN apparently didn't do any of its own reporting at the end of the race, and instead interviewed drivers about the race while "waiting for word from NASCAR."
posted by etagloh at 07:39 PM on February 23
I think we may be approaching the 40th anniversary of that projection
Lots of things that are tangentially related to the game have to change first, particularly the development system. It's been mentioned here and elsewhere before, but big league US sport is set up to identify talent at high school, develop it at college (or in baseball, the minors) and dish out pro contracts to 20-year-olds after the NCAA has taken its cut. That's too late for soccer, which is one reason why Klinsmann has brought German-born players into the national squad.
The infrastructure to get talented kids into academy systems is growing, but the relatively small professional base can only stretch so far, even with the assistance of the world's scouts. It's a fair guess that the US has 2026 World Cup-winning talent in suburban U-10 rec leagues right now, getting bored and disillusioned because there's not a well-defined path to higher-level play for them or for their parents.
posted by etagloh at 06:52 PM on February 17
One Afrikaans paper reported that Steenkamp's body was found in the bathroom and the shots had been fired through the bathroom door; no official confirmation of that, though.
posted by etagloh at 02:20 PM on February 15
Combined baseball and softball bid?
The IOC is bad at lots of things, but it's less bad at promoting gender balance, hence the combined bid by the two federations. I don't think Americans are much fussed about their presence or absence, either.
posted by etagloh at 02:29 AM on February 14
I don't get what the limiting factor is; is there some law about how long the Olympics can run for?
The 16 days between Friday night opening and Sunday night closing are pretty much locked in these days, but football group matches and archery ranking rounds precede the opening ceremony.
To complicate the politics even further, Istanbul is bidding for the 2020 games, although Tokyo is currently considered the favourite. To place in jeopardy the presence of a top event for a potential host city seems more than coincidental to me. Then again, the Telegraph writeup talks about perceived issues with TV appeal, but it also suggests that wrestling didn't conduct an "effective lobbying campaign", which sounds like IOC-code for something that rhymes with "tribes".
I like the "pinnacle achievement" formula (and I've heard it before) but don't mind the football competition on the men's side, because it fits into the FIFA youth championship system, and if you have a men's competition, you need a women's one too, even if you can't make it a U23+ringers tournament. For tennis and golf, though, it's just another tour week.
posted by etagloh at 07:28 PM on February 12
some Baltic-area nations (Turkey (28 of their 39 gold medals), Hungary, Bulgaria (their top sport), Romania).
ITYM Balkan. The wrestling belt runs from the Black Sea to the Caspian, with the US, Cuba and Korea as odd outposts. Perhaps it's just enough votes to keep out the squash advocates.
posted by etagloh at 02:53 PM on February 12
I kind of got into Modern Pentathlon at the London Games (#JJGo) so I'm glad to see it's still around, but for me there is not a more Olympic-y sport than wrestling.
ModPent is sort of easy to organise, as it's now done during the final weekend when everything is winding down, and re-uses existing facilities. (There was a good turnout in London, especially for the Comedy Horse Lottery in association with Findus.)
On the other hand, wrestling basically needs a general-purpose arena and a matted floor, so it can re-use the facilities devoted to judo and taekwondo, which is what happened in London. So my guess is that it's more to do with IOC-federation politics than anything else.
Maybe the IOC didn't like any of the other sports applying for bids
That sounds about right, since it's now one of those eight that gets chosen later in the year. It's an easy way to once again stiff squash, which admittedly has technical issues with the facilities, but has by far the best claim of the seven candidates. It's the equivalent of Heinz announcing that it'll discontinue its salad cream, basking in the brand promotion that ensues, then saying that they'll keep it around.
posted by etagloh at 02:03 PM on February 12
Obligatory Mawkish Beer-Horse beat Overblown Patriotism From Italian-Owned Auto Company?
posted by etagloh at 04:39 PM on February 04
Me neither, though I hope that this inspires every ball boy at every Chelsea away game. And I'm pretty sure that the terrace composers are already at work.
posted by etagloh at 07:41 PM on January 24
So the "ball boy" was deliberately stopping the player from getting the ball, by initially holding it and then laying down on it?
If only professional football matches had multiple balls on the touchline to keep the game flowing...
posted by etagloh at 11:41 PM on January 23
Eden Hazard just got sent off for kicking a Swansea ballboy who wouldn't give him the ball back fast enough. That's a first.
posted by etagloh at 04:28 PM on January 23
The Puppy Bowl just became a viewing option.
posted by etagloh at 12:23 AM on January 21
Wouldn't it make more sense to have the outdoor game played earlier, with some daylight?
Not if you want to raise the odds of a suitably wintry setting for the outdoor game.
posted by etagloh at 04:25 PM on January 20
Me in 2004
I've put a little mea in my culpa since then, thanks to reading a lot more about the bike culture of the late 90s, as the omerta has gradually been chipped away and the early whistleblowers have been vindicated. Simeoni doesn't need my apology, but he has earned some (non-wage-earning) satisfaction.
all are to me just ways in which science and biotechnology are making it possible for elite athletes to stay at their level for longer
Except that they're also making it possible for aspiring elite athletes to drop dead, something which you apparently refuse to acknowledge, conflating "science and biotechnology" with folk medicine and "if this works, take twice as much and see if it works twice as well".
posted by etagloh at 12:17 AM on January 19
Such a designer gloves, lime green cleats and featherwinged shoulder pads kind of place.
Don't forget the warm-hearted, tolerant and patient fan base.
posted by etagloh at 03:03 PM on January 16
as the coach and his attorney calmly tick off the extra millions in contractual championship bonus money that keeps rolling in.
And the academic departments once again contemplate what it is to be subsidiaries of a sporting franchise.
posted by etagloh at 04:24 PM on January 08
Maybe the SEC Championship should be considered the national title game until another program or conference can hang with their best.
I like the idea of having two title games: the SEC Championship and a matchup between two non-SEC teams, and never the twain shall meet. That way everyone can sustain the oneupmanship right through until the start of the next season.
(Remember, the arguments are features, not bugs.)
posted by etagloh at 12:36 AM on January 08
My broader point is that for every non-scrambling Hall of Fame QB, there are a handful of pretty decent pocket-passers who have had the bejimminies knocked out of them, which is one reason why they're not ranked alongside those non-scrambling HoF QBs. It just feels like there's a certain amount of confirmation bias here.
posted by etagloh at 10:02 PM on January 07
Seems there may be a reason Marino, Manning, and some of the QBs who rarely subject themselves to such punishment can play into their late 30s.
Well, one reason on the part of Marino was his skill at being born in 1961, which meant he didn't have to face modern Ds that are significantly bigger and faster.
posted by etagloh at 07:34 PM on January 07
By the fourth quarter, I was rooting for Seattle so that Griffin could get some rehab. There's already too much mythology in the NFL about playing through pain.
posted by etagloh at 12:38 PM on January 07
He's got one more year to avoid the collective desire of the SEC D to have him as part of their own highlight reels. It also puts pressure on A&M replace the O-line seniors. He is definitely a bit good, though.
posted by etagloh at 01:30 AM on January 06
From that SI piece:
At some point between the hit and Ellington's catch for the win, someone pulled Clowney aside on the sideline, pulled out a smartphone and showed him footage of the clip on YouTube. "Somebody just said, 'Make a big play,'" Clowney said. "It just came to me."
posted by etagloh at 01:12 PM on January 02
All hail the mighty ACC, or something: USC Trojans lose to Georgia Tech(!); LSU go down to Clemson.
posted by etagloh at 11:24 PM on December 31
You can see him shouting "OOH! OOH! I KNOW THIS ONE!"
He gets to claim that one all for himself at the end-of-season awards dinner, and I bet Cobb and he had some banter about it afterwards, as it was clearly deliberate.
posted by etagloh at 02:36 PM on December 24
If he stays fit, then he's got a career for the next few years, given that Sevens is now more or less a self-sustaining thing on an annual schedule with specialist players, and a USA team always gets invited along. There are lots of jokes about wingers being one-trick ponies, but he's only going to improve -- he was a DII RB, so his skills are there to be refined.
posted by etagloh at 11:58 PM on December 11
Arsenal are in a weird situation with the League Cup: silverware is silverware, so they can't just put out the stiffs and shrug it off, but they also can't commit a full squad that has Champions League and Premier League duty most mid-weeks.
Will be interesting to see what kind of squad Chelsea put out vs Leeds tomorrow (aka the 70s Hooligan Memorial Trophy) now that they're out of the CL.
posted by etagloh at 06:27 PM on December 11
Carlin Isles couldn't qualify for the US Olympic team this year, even though his 100m best of 10.13 would have been enough to get him selected for most countries. A few months ago, he took up rugby, hoping to make it to Rio in 2016 for the new Sevens tournament. He's a bit quick.
posted by etagloh at 06:21 PM on December 11
Stoke - Port Vale is one of those rivalries where there is no humour whatsoever. Portsmouth - Southampton is similar. But they're lower-division, and a lot of the old First Division city derbies (Sheffield, even Nottingham for a time) have been broken up.
As an ongoing contest, Arsenal - Spurs has staying power, perhaps more so than the Manchester and Liverpool derbies. Although Newcastle - Sunderland definitely has a lot going for it.
posted by etagloh at 02:45 PM on December 10
If you're getting paid NFL wages, hire a full-time driver for your nights out.
posted by etagloh at 04:39 PM on December 08
They don't coach you to drop the ball in those situations. Or perhaps they do, but it's not something you can actually get into receivers' heads.
The closeness of the result makes the Sugar Bowl selection a wee bit more interesting, though I think Florida may still get the nod there, mainly because sitting around helps you more in the polls than nearly winning.
posted by etagloh at 11:41 PM on December 01
I'm not sure I'd fully agree with hincandenza's last comment, but I think the "competition vs entertainment" argument is the thing here.
American professional leagues are certainly contrivances that aim to produce a combination of microcompetition (drafts and salary capping to encourage rough results on a game-by-game basis) and macrocompetition (playoff systems that offer relatively marginal rewards for success in the regular season, and often offer .500 teams a path to the championship).
So I absolutely understand rcade's point about being in Orlando's home market but not being an Orlando home supporter -- and it's clear that college sports (or minor leagues) are actually closer to the European professional model in terms of the hard home/away distinction and fan expectations.
I do think hincandenza is right that the contrivances are ultimately broken, not just because (San Antonio - OAPs) = (Bobcats): there's a tension between the microcompetition and macrocompetition in a league system in which each team is individually motivated towards the goal of a championship, as opposed to an exhibition league. The Spurs are not the Harlem Globetrotters.
posted by etagloh at 10:28 PM on December 01
Why do you stop there and give the road team an excuse not to play at full strength?
There's not much of an away support at most big-league sporting contests, because of geography and ticketing policies. Now, I'll grant that many franchises rely on visiting stars to fill empty seats, and that the catchment area for franchises comes with additional travel costs.
I simply think that as a home supporter, your ticket is a tacit contract with the home team. (As an away fan, you are paying in the hope of that rare, exquisite experience of watching home fans suffer, and usually end up suffering yourself.) If the away team wants to send half a squad, I may bemoan not being able to share my opinion of the absent stars within their earshot, but I'm completely fine with it.
Like I said, the setup of American leagues changes this a bit, and every professional league around the world has people who'll show up to watch a glamorous visiting team. I just personally don't care about part-timers.
posted by etagloh at 05:28 PM on December 01
It's bad PR to allow teams to keep healthy star players out of games. The fans at the game are cheated out of the players they have every reason to expect to see that night.
I think you have a right to expect the home team to show up at full strength and play to win. Anything else is a bonus and doesn't come with the price of a ticket. That works both ways: I think it's bullshit to charge extra based upon the strength or pulling power of the opposition, apart from marginal situations such as a cup tie that needs additional resources.
So I agree with hincandenza on this, but acknowledge that it's a legitimate philosophical difference, especially in the American context of league systems with drafts, revenue-sharing and wage caps to induce more "entertaining" competition.
posted by etagloh at 10:49 AM on December 01
The Hurricanes are in Raleigh, while the Bobcats and Panthers are three hours away in Charlotte. The Triangle does have college basketball (and to a lesser degree, football) but the Raleigh fanbase seems a lot more engaged with 'its' hometown team than the ones in Florida and Arizona.
posted by etagloh at 11:33 PM on November 30
the UEFA Cup was possibly a tougher tournament than the Champions Cup, because it included everyone who was almost good enough to win their respective leagues
And often included clubs on upward slopes -- that is, this season's likely champions rather than last season's. That's changed because the Champions League and its millions has locked in most of the teams with a run at their domestic titles. (I think it was still a pretty decent competition until the switch to the Europa League format, although perhaps I'm biased.)
Even the Champions League is a victim of over-familiarity. In the days of the straight knockout tournaments, the chance to host Juventus or Bayern Munich or Real Madrid was a rare treat. Now it's just another Wednesday. At the same time, Champions League losers mostly get flushed into the Europa League, which means the Europa League doesn't have a coherent identity of its own.
Finally, the existing formats now play into the hands of a couple of top-heavy leagues (Spain and Portugal) while not giving strongish champions from smaller leagues a decent shot.
posted by etagloh at 01:37 PM on November 28
Oregon miss out on the Pac-12 title game because Stanford got the division tiebreaker; you'd assume they'll get an at-large bid, and the Fiesta Bowl has first dibs.
posted by etagloh at 02:40 PM on November 25
Deadspin has the best GIF of the many I've seen; Sanchez might as well retire now, because nothing else he does in his career is going to erase that. You could script it for a slapstick comedy film and the audience would consider it far-fetched.
posted by etagloh at 02:07 AM on November 23
That rule's gone next year. Straight out of Kafka. The principle behind automatic review is that momentum-changing decisions are worthy of a second look to make sure the officials get it right. There's something out of junior school in the rule as it stands: "you didn't ask nicely, so no, you can't go to the toilet... why are you peeing on the floor?"
posted by etagloh at 12:37 AM on November 23
Beckham's leaving the Galaxy after the MLS Cup, and all signs suggest that he may spend whatever's left of his career on short-term, high-value contracts in other developing national leagues, with Australia's A-League first on the list.
posted by etagloh at 09:41 AM on November 20
Boise State, San Diego State and BYU may be looking to return to the MWC, which would mean the former two buying out their contracts with the Big East due to begin begin next year.
posted by etagloh at 09:32 PM on November 19
As for scheduling "cupcakes" all top teams generally schedule 3 games versus lower-caliber opponents. Alabama, in this case, is no different, even though one of their easy games came this past weekend.
Which is more than somewhat different from "no different", given that results at "gut-check time" count more than ones earlier in the season.
I'm fine with end-of-season rivalry games, where the strength of the opposition can vary dramatically year on year, because the rivalry itself is often a leveller. I understand why Cupcake Week exists for SEC teams, because the NCAA now mandates a game on Thanksgiving weekend and some teams' schedules used to end earlier. That doesn't stop me thinking it's bullshit.
But, yet again, the arguments are the feature, not the bug.
posted by etagloh at 11:40 PM on November 18
It gets down to gut-check tome in the season and they let Baylor stand in the way of a possible appearance for the title? Is Baylor a powerhouse?
Or if you're in the SEC, at gut-check time you host FCS teams and assume that the coaches and journos can't calibrate for cupcakes and outweigh the BCS computer. Pretenders.
posted by etagloh at 04:43 PM on November 18
to claim either of those State games aren't scheduled as gimmies is completely delusional.
The Seminoles are #10, so that's not quite yer gimme; Ga Tech (not State, my bad, but you knew what I meant) perhaps qualifies, but rivalry games...
Having focused on ND-WF, I was still taken by surprise at how the SEC teams were lined up against minnows this week.
The down side of Oregon's crazy offense? Kickers who don't get much game experience.
posted by etagloh at 01:43 AM on November 18
I'll indulge the trolling for a moment: Alabama-Auburn may be as cupcakey this year as the WCU Catamounts, but the vs. State games for Florida and Georgia aren't gimmes.
I wonder if you might see a few coaches protest-vote Ohio State at the end of the season.
posted by etagloh at 12:14 AM on November 18
These other pretenders just can't handle it.
Not against the mighty Western Carolina, Georgia Southern and Jacksonville State. It was Patisserie Break for the SEC this week.
(Though I do feel a wee bit vindicated on suggesting that Baylor might be more of an opponent than Wake Forest.)
posted by etagloh at 11:41 PM on November 17
It's a Hermann Tilke circuit, like most of the ones in F1's recent expansion, and the standard complaint against his designs is that they don't promote overtaking. Tilke thinks there are four distinct overtaking zones in Austin, and F1 watchers think there's enough there to create good racing, but we'll only know for sure once the race begins.
posted by etagloh at 08:50 PM on November 17
Well, that was a bit good from Ibrahimovic. (Link won't stay up, but anyway.)
posted by etagloh at 05:04 PM on November 14
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