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JRN 362 - Lecture Twenty-Three (Epilogue)

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JRN 362 - Lecture Twenty-Three (Epilogue)

  1. 1. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Rich Hanley, Associate Professor Lecture Twenty-Three (Epilogue)
  2. 2. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • If you were 10 years old in the 1840s, this is what football looked like.
  3. 3. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • If you were 30 in the 1860s, this is what football looked like.
  4. 4. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • If you were 50 in the 1880s, this is what football looked like.
  5. 5. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • If you were 60 in the 1890s, this is what football looked like.
  6. 6. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • If you were 70 in the 1900s, this is what football looked like.
  7. 7. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • If you were 80 in the 1910s, this is what football looked like.
  8. 8. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • If you were 90 in the 1920s, this is what football looked like.
  9. 9. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • This is what football looked like to a 10-year-old in the 1930s.
  10. 10. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • This is what football looked like to a 20-year-old in the 1940s.
  11. 11. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • This is what football looked like to a 30-year-old in the 1950s.
  12. 12. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • This is what football looked like to a 40-year-old in the 1960s.
  13. 13. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • This is what football looked like to a 50-year-old in the 1970s.
  14. 14. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • This is what football looked like to a 60-year-old in the 1980s.
  15. 15. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • This is what football looked like to a 70-year-old in the 1990s.
  16. 16. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • This is what football looked like to an 80-year-old in the 2000s.
  17. 17. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • This is what football looked like to a 90-year-old in the 2010s.
  18. 18. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • If that 90-year-old continued to live at least to the end of 2021, that person would have seen Tom Brady win Sports Illustrated’s Sportsperson of the Year twice - in 2005 and 2021. Only Tiger Woods and Lebron James have won it three times.
  19. 19. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • This is what football looks like to a 10-year-old in the 2020s. • Black QBs in college such as the great Eldridge Dickey were for decades told they couldn’t play the position in the NFL. Now, several such as Patrick Mahomes, Jalen Hurts and Kyler Murray are stars.
  20. 20. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • But problems persist when it comes to Black coaches in the NFL and college. • Despite the NFL’s Rooney Rule designed to encourage the hiring of Black coaches by requiring interviews with minority candidates, few are chosen.
  21. 21. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • In 2022, only three Black head coaches were on the sidelines: Mike Tomlin in Pittsburgh, Lovie Smith in Houston and Todd Bowles in Tampa Bay. • Almost 70 of NFL players are Black.
  22. 22. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • Black coaches can be traced exclusively to one Black coach: Tony Dungy, now with NBC. • That points to a need to hire more Black coaches to create more coaching trees with Black coordinators and assistants.
  23. 23. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • In November 2022, a 1957 photo of Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones surfaced that showed him at his Little Rock, Arkansas, high school in a group blocking Black students from entering the building after the Supreme Court three years earlier ordered schools to desegregate.
  24. 24. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • Jones acknowledged his actions and vowed to work to make sure the NFL would break the old-boys network to hire Black coaches. • He said the issue comes down to forming relationships between owners and more Black coaches.
  25. 25. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • Only two of the majority owners of the NFL’s 32 teams are minorities: one Asian American, the other Pakistani American.
  26. 26. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • Progress is possible. • Football also looks like this to a 10- year-old in the 2020s, who witnessed the first all-Black officiating crew in 2020.
  27. 27. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • The 10-year-old’s great grandfather probably did not witness a Black game official at all unless he or she attended a game featuring two all- Black teams.
  28. 28. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • And it looks like this to a 10-year- old, watching games officiated by women, including the first, Sarah Thomas, who joined the NFL in 2015.
  29. 29. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • And the 10-year-old witnessed Sarah Fuller of Vanderbilt become the first woman to play in a Power Five college football game – and the first to score when on Dec. 12, 2020, she kicked an extra point. Some 2,500 women have played high school and college football.
  30. 30. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • But what took so long for the American game to become open for Black and women players. • 1939, LIFE magazine reported on women’s football played fiercely in Los Angeles. But girls played tackle football throughout the U.S., too.
  31. 31. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • In the 1930s, a 14-year-old girl played center for her Connecticut high school team. A girl in Texas kicked for her high school.
  32. 32. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • But the male establishment then in control of school athletic departments and town parks and recreation institutions sought to prevent women from playing after LIFE published the photos. • Girls and women would be banned from the game for decades – until
  33. 33. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • Today, girls are fueling the growth of one of the fastest-growing sports in America, with 1,640 leagues: flag football. • Six states have certified girls’ flag football as a varsity sport, with another 2o considering it. The NFL sponsors girls’ flag football leagues.
  34. 34. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • “That’s the beauty of flag football,” Andrea Castillo, quarterback of Panama’s Bronze Medal team at the World Games in 2022, told the Los Angeles Times. “Everyone can play. It accessible and inclusive.”
  35. 35. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • The NFL is also supporting the growth of girls’ flag football in Latin America, where the sport’s following is growing. • International women’s flag football championships have been held since 2002.
  36. 36. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • With equality of opportunity in the air, the 10-year-old also witnessed the first woman to serve as an assistant coach during a game when Cleveland Browns chief of staff Callie Brownson roamed the sidelines directing the team’s tight ends in their Nov. 29, 2020, game against Jacksonville.
  37. 37. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • A 10-year-old would see Carl Nassib become the first active NFL player to announce that he is gay when he shared an Instagram video in June 2021. • Michael Sam had become the first openly gay athlete to be drafted by the NFL in 2014.
  38. 38. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • The 10-year-old is also watching coaches make decisions such as whether to go for a first down or attempt a two-point conversion based on analytics, developed in the 1960s in large measure by an accidental NFL quarterback named Virgil Carter.
  39. 39. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • Carter ties together many parts of the modern NFL. • Summoned to play quarterback by coach Paul Brown and offensive coordinator Bill Walsh of the Bengals after Greg Cook was hurt, Carter in his spare time authored a study that created a metric called expected
  40. 40. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • Called the expected points metric, its a computation that rests at the foundation of contemporary NFL analytics. • The metric is the typical number of net points a team can expect based on field position, down and distance.
  41. 41. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • Carter played college football at BYU under coach Lavell Edwards, who refined a spread offense later copied by college coaches and now pro coaches. • He is thus the single link between spread offenses and the analytics, components of the 21st century
  42. 42. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • And there is another piece of football magic to disclose. • Red Grange, the college star who gave the NFL credibility when he signed with Chicago in 1925, announced one of the first televised league games, the 1949 Thanksgiving Day game in Detroit.
  43. 43. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • And running the football – the elemental part of the game Grange pursued- may be back • In the first half of the 2022 NFL season, points scored fell to a five- year low, two years after teams set an NFL record for most points in a season with 12,692.
  44. 44. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • Through Week Eight of the 2022 NFL season, quarterbacks have passed for the fewest touchdowns since 2016. • Could the spread be dead? Or is it just that quarterbacks are running more than ever?
  45. 45. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • These examples show that the long history of the game and its roots are not all that distant, popping up down and then to remind us that the game remains close to history and the connections are tighter and more personal than we recognize. What’s old is new again.
  46. 46. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • Come to think of it, the old rugby game of yore mashed with the modern appeared in 1982 when California beat Stanford on a kickoff return featuring laterals and backwards passes that led to the winning TD as the Stanford band took the field.
  47. 47. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • “Working on a book about the inexplicable (game) … I interviewed coaches and players, fans, journalists and officials. I learned a lot about football, but more about brotherhood, regret and hope,” wrote James Rainey of the Los Angeles Times in a Nov. 19, 2021, story on the game.
  48. 48. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • So, in this period of acute medical trauma, anxiety and political anger, it may be no accident that Americans are looking to football for redemption, for togetherness and hope amid the grieving of incomprehensible loss.
  49. 49. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • As such, football will continue to reflect that “ ... subterranean river of untapped, ferocious, lonely and romantic desires, that concentration of ecstasy and violence which is the dream life of the nation” as writer Norman Mailer wrote of American life.
  50. 50. JRN 362/SPS 362 Story of Football Review+ • It is, after all, the same game as ever: a player carrying an air-filled bladder covered by animal hide must be brought to the ground before crossing a line, all in an exercise of ecstasy and violence experienced directly and vicariously each autumn and winter by millions of Americans.

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