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Topic: seattle seahawks
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February 3, 2014 at 9:17 AM
Super Bowl Champs. How sweet the sound. The pure delight of the Seahawks’ 12th Man fans is part of the magic of Sunday’s extraordinary win.
Yes, an extraordinary victory. The Denver Broncos, and their knighted, sainted quarterback, Peyton Manning, were expected to be all sorts of trouble. Would the Seahawks be competitive? Yes, of course. Could the Seahawks beat the Broncos? Certainly. Would the Hawks grind Manning and his team into dust? No one imagined that might happen.
The Broncos were attracting favorable predictions from all corners – how’d that game look to ya Gov. Christie? Denver was getting lots of high marks that all drifted back to Manning and his skills and abilities and leadership. Yes, the Broncos had an awesome season by any standard.
Typical of the admiring prose was a piece Sunday in The New York Times by Frank Bruni. His homage to Manning’s maturity explained how the NFL veteran would guide the Broncos to glory. Well, some things don’t work out. The terrified look in Manning’s eyes as the ball sailed past his head on the first play of the game was a grim omen.
The Seahawks combined offensive and defensive prowess into a complete performance. Kudos to coach Pete Carroll and his staff for creating that magic blend of talent. Go Seahawks. A stunning win. The Lombardi Trophy is the perfect exclamation point on that judgment.
January 31, 2014 at 1:10 PM
Last Saturday, New Orleans-based writer Keith O’Brien landed in Seattle wearing a bright orange Denver Broncos jersey and hat. He even festooned his rental car with two of that other team’s flags. A mutual friend convinced this Seahawks fan to tag along for the day to witness how an imposter would fare in the land of the 12th Man.
I learned we’re too nice. We really are, Emerald City. Read about O’Brien’s hilarious adventure (and how he fared as a faux Seahawks fan in Denver) in this feature story for Esquire.
On the same day my Seattle Times colleague Sharon Pian Chan wrote an editorial daring the 12th man to channel Richard Sherman’s trash-talking ways, O’Brien expected some swagger. He mentioned the editorial in his story:
In The Seattle Times just that very morning, an editorial page writer dared locals to be more like their idol in the No. 25 jersey. “I aim to Sherman-ate,” the writer declared, throwing down a challenge for her readers. “It’s time to do some trash-talking.”
Fans outside Mill Creek Sports—a sports memorabilia store tucked into a strip mall 30 minutes north of Seattle—seemed to be taking her challenge to heart as they waited to meet Beverly “Mama” Sherman. They carried homemade Seahawks flags and wore neon green costumes. And when I emerged from my rental car adorned with two Denver Broncos flags, ambled across the parking lot wearing a bright orange Broncos ball cap and Peyton Manning jersey and got in the long line for autographs, the Sherman-ating began with great gusto.
The gusto turned into a few cold stares and some passing comments, but nothing close to irate.
Later that day, my friends and I stopped in a dive bar in Georgetown. I watched in shock as bar-goers in Seahawks shirts (and a waitress with the team logo shaved into the side of her head) moved swiftly from booing to gentle swayin’ as the tall, skinny guy who called himself “Bronco Fan” shamelessly belted out his karaoke rendition of John Denver’s “Rocky Mountain High.”
As O’Brien points out in the story, it takes something much more to get people into what sports psychotherapists define as Fan Mode.
Though he got a healthy dose of “Seattle nice” during his 12-hour visit, expect Beast Mode to break out in two days — when the Seahawks and the 12th Man corral a bunch of ponies and send them home crying.
January 31, 2014 at 6:08 AM
Opinions are mixed on just how much Super Bowls really attract sex trafficking, but several stories this week by CBS News, The New York Times and The Christian Science Monitor place a spotlight on this widespread, illicit crime ahead of the match-up between the Seattle Seahawks and the Denver Broncos.
By Thursday morning, New York’s attorney general announced the arrest of 18 people suspected of running prostitution and drug rings in Manhattan for “high-end clientele” in town for Sunday’s game.
So here’s the message to the 12th man traveling east for the game: Have fun and represent your hometown. Don’t get caught doing you know what.
New Jersey officials are cracking down, too. Gov. Chris Christie has taken a beating in recent weeks for his staff’s shenanigans, but his blunt talk is worth paying attention to. Check out these tweets:
We are only a few days away from the Super Bowl. A time, where sex trafficking is at a high risk.
— Governor Christie (@GovChristie) January 29, 2014
So to anyone out there that is even thinking about it. Don't even try it. We have eyes and ears on the ground and on the web.
— Governor Christie (@GovChristie) January 29, 2014
October 31, 2013 at 6:00 AM
Are we so blinded by our love of sports that we’re willing to be fleeced by the most profitable sports league in the world and its billionaire team owners?
In Virginia, Republican Governor Bob McDonnell, who styles himself as a budget-slashing conservative crusader, took $4 million from taxpayers’ pockets and handed the money to the Washington Redskins, for the team to upgrade a workout facility. Hoping to avoid scrutiny, McDonnell approved the gift while the state legislature was out of session. The Redskins’ owner, Dan Snyder, has a net worth estimated by Forbes at $1 billion. But even billionaires like to receive expensive gifts.
Throughout the report, Easterbrook provides an exhaustive look at how American taxpayers have financed “70 percent of the capital cost of NFL stadiums,” in addition to many ongoing infrastructure and operating costs. Here’s a tidbit about the Seattle Seahawks:
CenturyLink Field, where the Seattle Seahawks play, opened in 2002, with Washington State taxpayers providing $390 million of the $560 million construction cost. The Seahawks, owned by Paul Allen, one of the richest people in the world, pay the state about $1 million annually in rent in return for most of the revenue from ticket sales, concessions, parking, and broadcasting (all told, perhaps $200 million a year).
The Seahawks are a great team, but this is just plain wrong, especially when we’re struggling to fully fund public education and to sustain the cost of essential services such as the Metro transit system and health care.
Here’s the kicker: The National Football League is tax exempt. To the IRS, the NFL has been known as the Nonprofit Football League for decades. NBC News reports it gets away with this by only claiming tax immunity for the main office, which operated in 2011 with about $255 million worth of revenue. The NFL’s main function is to distribute billions generated from licensing and television deals to its 32 for-profit teams, each worth on average $1.2 billion according to this Forbes report. Still doesn’t pass the smell test. How many trade or charitable organizations pay their top official (in this case NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell) nearly $30 million? (more…)
October 14, 2013 at 6:00 AM
Sorry to bring everyone down from their Sunday Seahawks high, but the question must be asked in light of mounting evidence that football is a dangerous game: Would you let your son play football?
Whether you have a kid or want to answer this hypothetically, here’s a quick poll:
Regardless of your answer, the NFL is here to stay. Americans adore football despite dire warnings from scientists that football has caused long-term brain damage in some players.
- Last week, PBS’s investigative series “Frontline” broadcast a two-hour program on this topic. Here’s a link to a brief, must-see visual interactive explaining how Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy has affected at least 50 players as young as 17. Watch the program below:
- Author and New Yorker writer Malcolm Gladwell wrote a thought-provoking and influential piece in 2009 comparing football to dogfighting. He has not let up on his criticism of the game, as tracked in this August report from The Atlantic.
- On Friday, The New York Times’ editorial page published a fascinating guest column by Gregg Easterbrook, author of “The King of Sports: Football’s Impact on America.” in which he argues President Obama needs to get involved in reforming the game today, just as former President Theodore Roosevelt did in the early, bloody days of football. Easterbrook writes that Roosevelt’s involvement made college football less brutal and led to the creation of the NCAA. (more…)