Tag: user-generated content

Nothing but Netball


One of Nerds on Sports’ loyal readers has challenged us!

Katharine wrote:
I challenge you to cover or at least mention the world netball championships
which are about to start in New Zealand. NB. There is a USA team taking part.

Not being familiar with netball, I had to do some research. The days are long gone that I could grow up learning about sport, proving a solitary common shared interest with more than one other member of the family. Nowadays, new interests in previously unfollowed sports is based upon three criteria:

  • How fun the game is to play
  • How fun the game is to watch
  • How attractive the top quintile of professional players are

It is with this in mind that I began my research, i.e., typed “netball” into Wikipedia.

Netball is a non contact sport similar to, and derived from, basketball. It is usually known as a girls’ sport.

So already, #3 has nothing to do with me. Not a good sign. My well below median height suggests that I would not enjoy playing the game, nor are there any handball courts in the immediate vicinity, so #1 is pretty much out too. Number 2 is tricky, though. I’m generally not a fan of basketball, but the game sounds different enough that it could be interesting. So let’s see what YouTube can dig up in terms of netball matches.

Lessee…pavement…pavement…quick cut to nothing in particular…pavement…turning away from the actual action…what is this, a sport or an Andy Warhol film?
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Bowling for Championships


It’s that time of year, folks – time to bitch about the Bowl Championship Series.

The BCS is a Frankenstein’s-monster of ad hoc rulings, institutional biases, popularity contests that would make cheerleaders wince and statistical oddities. In an era of franchise tags and million-dollar sponsorship deals, college football remains one of the last examples of sport for the sake of sport. Given all the love and attention it attracts, you’d think it’d merit some serious attempt at ranking.

Oklahoma over USC?  Whatever you say, Com-Pu-Tor!However, in the nine years since its inception, barely a year has gone by without some form of controversy. The BCS megacomputer picked Florida (8th) over Kansas State (3rd) in 1999, Florida State over Miami in 2000 and Nebraska over Colorado (the team that actually won the Big 12) in 2001. Not strictly the fault of the computer, but also deplorable: Oklahoma getting shoehorned into the Rose Bowl in 2002, the OK/LSU/USC voting fiasco in 2003, the Auburn Tigers being shut out in 2004, the shameful pandering to Notre Dame in 2005, and the tangle between Michigan, Ohio State and USC in 2006.

Then again, what do you expect? Six grossly disparate conferences (the Big East vs. the ACC?) playing seasons of varying lengths with a revenue sharing system that guarantees Notre Dame a slice of the pie no matter how bad they are. Seriously! Does this year’s 1-9 Notre Dame deserve the same share of revenue as 9-1 LSU? Or even as 3-7 Mississippi? Who can pretend this is fair?

Given all this, is it possible to fix the BCS? Or scrap it in lieu of a new and exciting method of determining the true champion of college football? Don’t just sit there, Nerds on Sports fans – you tell us!

Let’s Make A Sport


User-generated content day at Nerds on Sports.
Today’s game: Let’s Invent A Sport.

The procedure:

(1) You add a rule by posting a comment to this entry.

(2) The rules don’t need to be in any kind of sequential or procedural order. So if everybody else is talking about how to resolve fouls and you want to set the rules for overtime, just write it down.

(3) Don’t contradict anything that anybody else wrote already, unless you want it to be a special exception or a rules loophole.

(4) Don’t waste comments asking, “Hey, what do you mean when you say ‘x’ in comment #202?” Tell me what I meant by adding it to the rules.

I’ll start us off.

Scoring: Players score by either advancing the ball into their opponent’s First Zone and then passing the ball to a teammate in the opponent’s Primary Zone, or by advancing the ball into the opponent’s Primary Zone and then passing it to a teammate in the opponent’s First Zone.