Sunday, November 11, 2018

The Big Game

Next Saturday, November 17, 2018, the Big Game will be played in Berkeley, California. It is an American football game between Stanford University (Stanford Cardinals) and University of California, Berkeley (Cal Golden Bears). They meet once a year. This will be their 121st meeting.
 
Side Bar: In USA, it is a rule that if anyone wants to turn professional in any sports, they should have attended 4 years of college. (Some athletes have successfully challenged that rule.) Because of this and enthusiasm of alumni, college sports, especially American football and basketball are very famous. More famous than the professional teams.
 
Usually each college football game is attended by 40,000 to 60,000 people. Each spectator pays an average price of $50. In addition, the colleges are getting revenue by selling television rights. These colleges play 12 regular games a year. So it is a big revenue maker for the colleges and universities.
 
Who do I support in this week’s Big Game? Stanford vs Cal. I am torn. In our family, we have alumnus from both Stanford and Cal.
 
According to Las Vegas odds, Stanford is a slight favorite.
 
Here is Wikipedia link on the Big Game.
 
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Big_Game_(American_football)

15 comments:

  1. Thanks, Rajan, for introducing something new to my knowledge base. Very interesting. I read the Wikipedia page as well. What a history and tradition behind a sporting encounter! I was just wondering if there is anything on similar lines in India.
    American football isn't popular here, and I have only randomly watched some clips. Anyway, I will surely see how the match went.

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    1. Thanks for your comments Pradeep. I am glad you found this post interesting. One more thing I want to mention is when they introduce players (in professional games) they introduce by telling which university/college they went to. For example: John Smith from University of Oklahoma

      There was a player in Oakand Raiders football team. His name is Otis Sistrunk. He never went to college. Somehow ended up with Raiders. When they announce his name they always said Otis Sistrunk from the University of Mars. Here is is wiki

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Otis_Sistrunk

      I am planning to attend the Big Game. Will let you know the outcome.

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    2. But how come he was allowed to play, when a stint in college is mandatory? Was it some sort of an exemption that was given to him?

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    3. Thanks Pradeep. Otis was exempted because he served the Nation (U.S. Marine Corps).

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  2. Let me at the outset record my appreciation that your blog is distinguished by the range and variety of subjects dealt with!
    An interesting post. I never knew that varsities make money by collecting a fee from students for witnessing the matches.Visual media being a source is no doubt acceptable.
    I have one question that has been rankling in my mind while I watch cricket.Do we support team because it is associated with your state or because one of your family or friends are associated with the team or you go purely for the strong team with high skill and capability or champion the underdog?
    One more question that is topical here is whether one can appreciate as a purist of the game a foreign team because they are better players than our own in a series that is being played?

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    1. As long as the money is ploughed back into the university's and students' welfare it's fine. I am sure it is. I guess that should be the way too.

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    2. Thanks for your comments Mr.KP and Pradeep. Average attendance for each game is around 40,000 people. Not all are students. May be less than 3000. The rest of them are alumni and general public. College games are more popular in USA than professional games.

      Yes, money is spent on student welfare. Now you know where the money is coming from (as one of the sources) when a student from a remote village in India is awarded a full scholarship from a prestigious university in USA.

      My personal opinion is a good game or a good team or a good player must be appreciated whether it is domestic or foreign team or player.

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  3. Money-spinner, Marketing, or otherwise, major colleges across the world should start organising such tournaments as it will help students gain a variety of skills - other than academics. As anyone who has passed college can testify, non-academic skills are equally critical for success in the professional world.

    Destination Infinity

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    1. Thanks for your comments Rajesh. Your suggestion is already implemented in almost all universities and colleges in USA.

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  4. Questions SG
    1. Since you have family rooting for both who is your choice?
    2.How is this in comparison to
    India Pakistan Match ( Cricket )
    SF vs Cowboys ( Football)?

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    1. Thanks for your questions Dee. Here are my replies:

      1. I am inclined towards rooting for Stanford.
      2. India Pakistan Match is not a game. It is a show of patriotism.
      3. SF vs Cowgirls is World War 3.

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  5. I loved watching American college football when I was in college. I had been to one of the matches and loved the enthusiasm of everyone there. But I don't actively follow them now.

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    1. Thanks for your comments Ashwini. I am glad you had the experience of being in the stadium during the NCAA football games.

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  6. It is a great thing that a sport sustains
    for about one and a quarter centuries. And that too generating fund for universities without taxing the mass. Your topics are new and informative, SG.

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