Tag: ESPN

POWER IS AS POWER DOES

When the IAAF Council announced its significantly more strict Olympic entry standards for Tokyo 2020 on March 10th, and also changes to its Diamond League Tour, also for 2020 – essentially eliminating distance races over 3000m – the response from around the running world came fast and (mostly) furious. 

Perhaps most chagrined was Rich Kenah, Executive Director of the Atlanta Track Club, who will host the U.S. Olympic Marathon Team Trials next February 20th.  In wake of the strict new Olympic entry standards, the Atlanta Trials may not have much practical meaning in Olympic team selection anymore. 

This whole Olympic entry standards tightening didn’t happen in a vacuum, of course; it came at the request of the IOC, which, since the Olympics returned to the Modern Era in 1896, has used the sport of athletics as its center-stage attraction.  But now, as the sporting landscape has erupted with many more new sports looking for Olympic inclusion, the IOC doesn’t need as much from the sport of athletics as they once did.

It reminds me somewhat of when ESPN grew into the cable TV Hulk that came define an era.  Here’s how. (more…)

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USA vs. The World – Who Won?

    

     First of all, it sounds like either Michael Bay’s next disaster starring Shia LaBeouf, or The Donald’s campaign slogan for 2012.  Instead USA vs. The World is the Penn Relays format / marketing campaign  for their century-plus year old track carnival in Philadelphia.  

     I watched yesterday on ESPN, but I never caught the score.  Anyone catch the final?  It probably came down to the last race, and what a match up that would have been.  Everything on the line in that one race, all the pressure, all the prestige, all the money.  I know I saw a lot of national uniforms racing around the track, and waving flags in the packed stands. 

     Excuse me?  Oh, you say they didn’t actually keep score? Really?  But it was supposed to be a competition between the USA and the World, right?  I wanna know who won. 

     It was what?  Just a bunch of individual races?  You mean with nothing on the line like moving on to the next round or money?  So kind of like if the Heat – Celtics game this afternoon in the NBA Eastern Division semifinals just ran up and down the court for 48 minutes with every 24-second possession being an end in itself?  Jeez, you wonder why the NBA doesn’t do that. It’s such an intriguing format. 

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