Troy Polamalu to Retire

Troy Polamalu will now be a former great linebacker for the Pittsburgh Steelers. Polamalu told the Steelers he plans in retiring, according to the Herald-Standard (PA)

Polamalu played 12 years for the Steelers and was a dominant presence on one of the best defenses in the NFL. Polamalu also comes to notoriety for his long flowing hair. He leaves football as one of the best linebackers to play the position.

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Former Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ Kicker suing team for $20 Million 

Former New York Giant and Tamp Bay Buccaneer is suing the Bucs for $20 million according to a news release from the Podhurst Orseck and Brad Sohn Law Firm the Tampa Tribune. Tynes claims the team created “unsanitary working conditions” which led to his contraction of the MRSAinfectipn that would end his career.

“The negligence and premises liability lawsuit, filed by Podhurst Orseck and The Brad Sohn Law Firm in Broward County Circuit Court, seeks compensatory damages for (Tynes’) lost salary and substantial pain and suffering,’’ a news release from the firm said.
As the lawsuit alleges, Tynes contracted a Methicillan-resistant Staphylococcus aureas (MRSA) infection from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ Training Facility, which ended his career and cost him more than $20 million in expected future earnings.’’


Do Americans care about Soccer? 

The American sporting landscape is changing. Football, even though still highly popular, has come under fire for being to violent and to detrimental to players’ health. Baseball has been declining in popularity amongst young kids, most likely for being too slow. Basketball has maintained its popularity, but has not surpassed football. The question comes when I ll Americans start caring about soccer and the MLS , Major League Soccer, the American league of global football.

Frank Deford of NPR notes that American interest in the global game has peaked, but Americans cannot seem to watch MLS:

For just about every other nation, soccer is thesport—a far, far better thing than the American dollar, beer, Google or sex. Alas, in the United States, soccer has been more commonly identified with soccer moms than soccer players.

The American sports fan loves sports. A fan will watch almost anything — hello PBA bowling. As Deford mentions, the World Cup does get great ratings every four years. However, Americans are used to the best professional sports leagues in the world. This means more Americans are going to watch European leagues over MLS.

MLS has a chance to grow and has been steadily increasing in popularity. At 20 years old the leaugue has expanded, even adding teams in Canada. MLS success relies on keeping home grown talent and growing the game in schools. Maybe ones at MLS will be compared to La Liga, but if that day comes it will not be for a long time.

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Duke Wins, Wisconsin Coach doesn’t like ‘renting’ players, and the NCAA making money 

Duke won the 2015 NCAA men’s basketball tournament Tuesday night defeating Wisconsin 68-63. After the game, Bo Ryan, Wisconsin’s coach, basically blamed the referees and then went on to so he doesn’t want to ‘rent players’ to win a championship. After all that, the question still remains as to why does the NCAA not allow athletes to make money while playing in school?

The NCAA makes around 96 percent of it’s revenue from the men’s tournament each year. Coaches making millions complain about the officials. Something does not add up. College athletics is great, it allows athletes to come to schools and perform at a high level both academically and athleticaly… well at least athleticaly.

Men’s basketball and football players are not ‘student-athletes’ they are athlete-students. They play a game for a university and get subsidized in an education many of them will not use. 

The system needs to change. When a billion dollar event only financially benefits organizations and not the participants there is a problem. College sports are great, but are not financially sound at the moment.

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NFL to hire First Full-Time Female Referee

Aaron Wilson of the Baltimore Sun reported today the NFL plans to hire Sarah Thomas as the first full-time female referee.

@RavensInsider: Hearing the NFL has hired its first female official, Sarah Thomas, a ground-breaking move. Mississippi native was a finalist previously 4/3/15 

The NFL has seen a female referee before. Shannon Eastin was a replacement referee during the 2012 season.

This is good news for the NFL, a league that seemed to be a ‘no female league.’ Hiring Thomas allows the NFL to cater to its female fan base and hopefully bridge the gender gap in the sporting world.

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New York City to surpass 2020 Population Estimates within the Year

A crowd in Times Square

A crowd in Times Square

New York City’s population is expected to surpass 2020 estimates according to the Real Deal, the New York real estate blog.

New census estimates reveal that the population of New York City reached 8,491,079 in 2014, a problematic figure given that it is only about 60,000 short of previous estimates for the 2020 population.

New York is the constent megapolis in the Unuted States. Always changing and growing, but only growing vertically, the City cans expand out. The population increase is an issue that many cities deal with, but it takes another turn in New York. This city can not handle more people easily. The beauty of New York, its simplicity, is being lost in the influx of people.

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Uniform Number Restrictions in College Basketball 

Ever notice something missing at a college basketball game? Have you ever seen a player with the numerals 6, 7, 8, or 9 on his uniform? Well, apparently there’s a rule for that according to the New York Times.

The rule is in place so referees can signal a player’s uniform with a maximum of two hands. The numbering system can be adapted so referees can signal a number to the scorer’s table more effectively. Interesting rule.

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Report: Cablevision to make $1 Offer to Purchase New York Daily News

Reuters is reporting that cable operator Cabelvision System Corp. is planning on making a $1 dollar offer to purchase the New York Daily News.

Cablevision’s $1 bid takes into account the New York Daily News’ reported $30 million annual loss and $150 million investment in a printing press, and declining circulation that relies heavily on newsstand sales rather than on subscriptions, the source said.

Cablevision already owns Newsday, New York’s suburban newspaper. The cable company is controlled by the Dolan family who also run the Madison Square Garden company.

New York City has its share of media conglomerates, but Cablevision has to be one of the more intriguing, primarily because of James Dolan. Dolan seems to be poised to want to corner the New York market, but only time will tell if Cablevision will soon dominate the largest media market in the country.

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Chris Mullin to Replace Steve Lavin as St. John’s Head Coach

The Red Storm of St. John’s University have gone back to the age of big hair for their next head coach. Chris Mullin, former star for the Red Storm men’s basketball program in the 1980’s, will be the university’s new men’s head basketball coach, according to sources.

Mullin has received words of advise from his former coach Lou Carnesecca:

“We talked, and you have to understand this is a big thing for Chris, a major, major step,” Carnesecca said. “He had a good thing going [in Sacramento], where he could come and go as he wants. Now it’s a vocation. This is no longer a job, it’s a vocation.”

Mullin has been one of many former players with no prior experience, both on the collegiate and professional levels, to be hired as head coaches. Jason Kidd and Derek Fisher, both former NBA stars, have started their coaching careers for New York teams, but Mullin has more connections to the St. John’s program than Kidd and Fisher have to their pro-teams. Mullin’s success may be worth the wait. He will need to plan and work hard, but Mullin’s presence may help establish better recruiting for the Johnnies in the New York City area. The shift might rejuvenate a program that has had only limited success since Mullin’s departure as a player during the 1980’s.

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NFL Looking to Expand Overseas 

The NFL has long wanted to increase its brand image outside the United States. On Thursday Albert Breer of NFL.com reported that the league is looking into expanding into overseas markets, zeroing in on Canada, China, and Mexico.

Both Canada and Mexico have hosted regular season games, while China has always been in the mix. London will play host to 3 regular season games this coming season. Brazil has been mentioned as a Pro Bowl location.  All locations are great to help showcase the NFL brand. However, the most interesting comment from Breer’s reported was from Mark Waller, the NFL’s international chief, stating that the league wanted a team playing in Europe full-time by 2022.

The NFL is not the NBA, MLB, or NHL. These leagues are at the top of their respective sports ladders. International players enjoy playing in those leagues and bring global eyeballs. American gridiron football is a great game, but is a hard sell outside the United States. Canada and Mexico allow for limited exposure on the Nirth American continent, but even in Mexico global futbol wins out. 

The NFL is at a tipping point with international expansion. The league needs to focus on improvements within its current state and then move on to building appeal in foreign markets .

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