The Opening Kickoff

The Opening Kickoff

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Ita€™s Americaa€™s most popular sport, played by thousands, watched by millions, and generating billions in revenues every year. Ita€™s also Americaa€™s most controversial sport, haunted by the specter of life-threatening injuries and plagued by scandal, even among its most venerable personalities and institutions. At the college level, we often tie footballa€™s tales of corruption and greed to its current popularity and revenue potential, and we have vague notions of a halcyon time--before the new College Football Playoff, power conferences, and huge TV contracts. Perhaps we conjure images of young Ivy Leaguers playing a gentlemana€™s game, exemplifying the collegial in collegiate. What we dona€™t imagine is a game described in 1905, not today, as qa social obsession--this boy-killing, man-mutillating, education-prostituting, gladiatorial sport.q In The Opening Kickoff, Dave Revsine tells the riveting story of the formative period of American football (1890-1915). It was a time that saw the gamea€™s meteoric rise, fueled by overflow crowds, breathless newspaper coverage and newfound superstarsa€”including one of the most thrilling and mysterious the sport has ever seen. But it was also a period racked by controversy in academics, recruiting, and physical brutality that, in combination, threatened footballa€™s very existence. A vivid storyteller, Revsine brings it all to life in a captivating narrative.Some of the players were profiting off the game, as well, although far more modestly than their coaches. The system of covert payments, like the ones made to Yalea#39;sJames Hogan around the turn of the century, became more widespread throughout the 1920s, a poorlykept secret ... The stock market crashed justdays later, and the nation turnedits attention from college footballindiscretions to survival.

Title:The Opening Kickoff
Author:Dave Revsine
Publisher:Rowman & Littlefield - 2014-07-29


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