Unfair Advantage

It’s been an interesting year so far, huh? Amongst many other things, the clusterfuck known as 2020 has directly led to complete chaos in the sporting world. Maybe you don’t care about that, but it’s a pretty big deal in America. Most major sports have found some plan of action to move forward, some (hockey, basketball) working better than others (baseball). But now we wait to see what the football juggernaut is going to look like.

The song and dance the NCAA and Division I football has gone through is a complete farce. The Big Ten and Pac-12 wanted to be heroes and cancelled/postponed their fall seasons. The ACC, SEC, and Big 12 wanted to be heroes and said yeah, no, we’re gonna keep playing. There have been protests and complaints and petitions and calls from Presidents and now we might get a Big Ten season. Your guess is as good as Kevin Warren’s as to when that might happen, though. I’m not holding my breath that I’m gonna see the Badgers play this season, but hey, anything is possible.

Then you have the NFL. They’re the king around these parts, so it was a certainty that they were going to have a season. When was it going to start? What does training camp look like? How is travel going to be handled? These and many more are questions that had to be answered to move forward. One of these answers that is gaining criticism, is the NFL’s decision on fan attendance in the stadiums.

Basically the NFL has instructed its teams to follow local guidelines around social gatherings and whatnot. What does that actually mean? Do whatever you want. Listen, I don’t know if colleges should be playing football. I also don’t know if we should be attending games. What I do know is that the Cowboys being allowed to have fans and the Packers not, is complete and utter bullshit.

I think it’s dumb the Power 5 Conferences couldn’t come to a consensus, whatever that may be, and we have this fragmented season. But they are essentially independent organizations, and they can and did come to different conclusions on what they wanted to do. The NFL is the NFL (facts only). How can you have some teams with fans and some without?

It seems like a completely unfair advantage for some teams to not be allowed to have a home crowd. But don’t take my word for it, read this very interesting article from The Athletic. Editor’s note: that article is behind a paywall and I didn’t actually read it all but it seemed like it supported what I was saying and I like posting links. Buffalo Bills head coach Sean McDermott seems to agree:

“I think it’s honestly ridiculous that there will be … what appears to be a playing field that is like that,” McDermott said Monday during a video conference call with reporters. “Inconsistently across the league with the different away stadiums.”

Bullshit. Complete and utter bullshit. On a completely unrelated note, I will be in the Green Bay area the weekend of the Packers-Lions game.

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