Manly men — and even some women — complain that football is becoming feminized

For several years now, I’ve been writing about the gradual convergence of various factors which, taken together, pose an existential threat to football. We’re reaching the point where the most fundamental aspects of the football culture — the violence and machismo –  are under assault. Players suddenly — and litigiously — are aware that head injuries suffered on the field can bring life-long misery. Consequently, new rules have been promulgated, and some players are unclear about which kind of tackles are...

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Patriotic? Northwestern footballers to wear uniforms depicting spattered blood!

Here’s an example of adding insult to injury: As if it weren’t bad enough that the Northwestern Wildcats football team has not lived up to expectations this season, the players will now have to endure the potential humiliation of having to wear uniforms that bespeak a misplaced notion of patriotism. The story is HERE: In its Nov. 16 game against Michigan, Northwestern football players will wear special uniforms as part of the team’s effort to support the Wounded Warrior Project. Naturally, the uniforms, which are made by Under...

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The curious overuse of the F-word

It’s that time of year again when I’m obliged to register my annual complaint about a certain pet peeve — namely the odd penchant among people associated with the gridiron culture to use the word “football” seemingly six times in every sentence. I’ve been beefing about this for years now, and a search of the Internet shows that I’m not the only person annoyed by it. But the problem persists. Broadcasters, coaches, players and others involved in the sport have to remind themselves every few seconds that the game is called “football.”...

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Did pressure from the NFL prompt ESPN to bail out on PBS investigation of football concussions?

HERE‘s the basic news story: ESPN has backed out of its collaboration with PBS’ “Frontline” on an investigation into the NFL’s response to concussions and brain injuries. The end of the partnership was first announced on Thursday in a statement from “Frontline,” authored by executive producer David Fanning and deputy executive producer Raney Aronson. The partnership between PBS’ respected longform journalism series and ESPN’s “Outside The Lines” was announced in November 2012. It has included...

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Is football on its deathbed?

John Kass of the Chicago Tribune SAYS the answer to the question above is yes: Football is dead in America. Even through all the chatter and cheerleading and media hype, football as an American cultural institution lies in final spasm. It’s as dead as the Marlboro Man. And if the professional game survives at all, it will be relegated to the pile of trash sports, like mixed martial arts or whatever is done in third-rate arenas with monster trucks and mud. It won’t be as American as apple pie. Instead, football will become the...

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