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  1. #1
    Ragman is offline Senior Member
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    Default Better we should become complacent about World Cup (long and controversial)

    It is true, as you say, that we have the talent pool and resources. But they are not unlimited. So, if we direct our talent pool and resources at soccer, we are necessarily diverting them away from other sports.

    You and other soccer fans believe that there is no reason to relegate soccer to the bottom of the USA sports heap. But with all due respect, there really is no reason to put it on the top, either. As a value proposition, soccer is no better or more important than any other sport.

    What does happen when we over-emphasize soccer is that we take good young athletes away from other sports--including football, basketball and baseball. Did you know that American football is withering at the high school level in large part because good young athletes are devoting themselves to soccer?

    Soccer also takes young athletes away from Olympic sports, which, frankly, are far more important to the USA's international sporting stature. We've never been any good at soccer, but we have been a powerhouse in swimming, track and field, Alpine skiing, figure skating and gymnastics, to name a few, and we've been a near powerhouse in many other Olympic sports. But the USA's stature in those sports is at risk because the base is flat or falling--in large part because good young athletes are devoting themselves to soccer.

    The American Youth Soccer Organization claims that over 1.2 million American youth are playing soccer in its programs. If that's true, that number dwarfs the number of registered athletes in swimming and track and field combined--the disciplines in which the USA won more than half of its medals in each of the last two summer Olympic Games.

    Soccer also has a nasty little secret that soccer fans and AYSO completely overlook: the rate of serious injury is far greater in soccer than any other sport--even American football.

    So, I say, encourage complacency about soccer. Let Ghana and those other countries have their fun, too.

    BTW, I am not a soccer-hater. I played the game in high school myself, my brother played through college, I've been to pro games, etc. But believe it or not, soccer fans, despite my up-close look at the game, I conclude it is no more beautiful, compelling, symbolic or important than any other game. And as a matter of personal preference, I'd rather watch almost any one of them over a soccer friendly.

  2. #2
    trace1124 is offline Senior Member
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    Default Interesting.

    I hadn't heard that stat you mention about h.s. sports such as football withering on the vine. Here in Pa. HS football still reins supreme. In fact one of our longtime soccer powerhouses-Northeastern- has finally decided to play HS football, and I predict the opposite will happen to them for their soccer program. But you may be correct in other parts of the country

  3. #3
    Rutherford is offline Member
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    Default It's probably good for international relations...

    Lot's of countries view their national Soccer team as a proxy war. Giving them something to beat us at because they won't beat our armed forces helps them to some degree.

  4. #4
    Snizshizzle is offline Senior Member
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    Default What?

    >>>>Soccer also takes young athletes away from Olympic sports, which, frankly, are far more important to the USA's international sporting stature. We've never been any good at soccer, but we have been a powerhouse in swimming, track and field, Alpine skiing, figure skating and gymnastics, to name a few, and we've been a near powerhouse in many other Olympic sports. But the USA's stature in those sports is at risk because the base is flat or falling--in large part because good young athletes are devoting themselves to soccer

  5. #5
    Ragman is offline Senior Member
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    Default Actually...

    American football tends to take less time than does soccer for most athletes.

    Football is seasonal. AYSO leagues encourage kids to play soccer 10-11 months per year. That doesn't leave a lot of time for exploring other sports.

  6. #6
    Snizshizzle is offline Senior Member
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    Default Actually...

    football has summer camps and in most schools requires them to train during the entire year. My highschool made the football team workout all year.

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