Sports at Large with Milton Kent

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AJ Guel

For most Americans, Sunday is the day of the week where two of our most significant institutions, religion and professional football are most visibly on display. The two entities intersect in a big way on most Sundays. Many people of faith slide comfortably from their spiritual houses of worship to their secular ones, the stadiums where their football gods have taken up residence. Inside those football tabernacles, religion is freely and fervently practiced, with the usually tacit, but sometimes vocal approval of the spectators.

Deejay via flickr

As teams begin to report to training camp this week, I continue to find myself in a bit of a quandary over how a sport whose leadership shows such a continued indifference over how the public perceives it much less how it treats its players can still thrive.

Matt Chan via flickr

University of Maryland president Wallace Loh has proposed to break with tradition once again, by allowing the sale of beer and wine to the general public at the football and basketball arenas on campus beginning in the fall.

With the possible exception of the moment when the people at Coke went back to the original formula, few things have been as universally celebrated in this country than American Pharoah’s win in the Belmont Saturday.

Crystian Cruz via flckr

Know how you hear about the launch of a new product or the opening of a big summer blockbuster movie…and your reaction is a big yawn. 

That’s largely the feeling from this corner over last week’s news that executives of soccer’s international governing body were arrested on corruption charges.

I guess I’m supposed to be upset or at least concerned that 14 FIFA officials were indicted on charges of bribery, money-laundering and racketeering involving tens of millions of dollars over the past two decades.

Jerome Carpenter via flickr

It was a pretty good fall and winter in College Park, as University of Maryland teams marked their first seasons in the Big Ten by exceeding expectations in football, men’s basketball and women’s basketball.

And it’s shaping up to be a pretty good spring there, too. By the time you hear this, the men’s lacrosse team may have joined the women’s team in winning a national championships.

Coach Cathy Reese’s women’s team won its second straight title – a record 13th overall – with a 9-8 victory over former ACC rival North Carolina Sunday.

Blink Color via flickr

If your interest runs deeper than touchdowns, tackles and fantasy stats, you have to admit that loving the NFL of late feels rather unsavory. Just last week, a league-authorized investigation found probable cause that support staff of the Super Bowl champion New England Patriots may have altered the size of the footballs that were used during playoff games. And it may have happened with the knowledge and/or instruction of their heartthrob quarterback Tom Brady.

Keith Allison via flickr

For the last seven decades, it’s been baseball, more than our other major sports, that has led the way in terms of its connection to the broader American social fabric. And nowhere was that association on greater display than last week during the unrest that rocked Baltimore to its core.

Thomson20192 via flickr

The player being discussed most frequently in the glacial walk-up to the selection of college talent by professional teams is Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston.

Caroline Terp via flickr

Because history is an evolving thing, we should always be mindful of its elasticity, of the idea that one day’s absolute is the next day’s possible, and vice versa. As time passes, one era's standards and mores can often be found lacking by later generations.