IOC gives stiff arm to football

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Before football ever can become an Olympic sport, the International Olympic Committee must recognize it.

The IOC isn’t presently inclined to do so.

According to Alex Marvez of FOXSports.com, the IOC has rejected the International Federation of American Football’s initial application for recognition.  Folks from the IFAF will meet with representatives from the IOC within the next 45 days to discuss ways that the effort can be enhanced for the future.

“American football’s burgeoning international athlete participation and appeal continues to propel the game on an exciting upward path,” an IFAF spokesman told FOXSports.com.  “IFAF and the world’s American football family have great reason to remain inspired and energized by our ongoing dialogue with IOC leadership.”

Even with IOC recognition, football would be a long way from inclusion in the Olympics.  Without IOC recognition, the chances of that happening are nil.

If football ever would approach Olympic status, the most compelling question would be whether it would be played in the Summer Olympics or the Winter Olympics.  Games played on truly frozen tundra would help neutralize the extent to which our second-tier college players would blow out the best of the best from any other countries that can cobble together enough equipment to play.

32 responses to “IOC gives stiff arm to football

  1. The IOC should be so smart. Wrestling, you know the ancient sport, lets drop it and include great sports like beach volleyball and rhythmic gymnastics, you know twirling scarfs.

    Football’s better off without the Olympics.

  2. What kind of competition would there be? It’d be a joke worse than the pro bowl.

  3. Just one of the many areas Goodell is failing miserably. The international expansion of this sport is unfortunately NOT moving at a snail’s pace.

    It’s moving at the pace of a snail shaped bacteria.

  4. That last paragraph is pretty myopic. I also believe the U.S. has the best collection of football players in the world, but, think a bit before spouting off something like that. (Assuming the recognition and logistics of playing the game in the Olympics are worked out) Who do you think will play for the U.S.? Pros? Nope. The teams would balk because their huge investments could be permanently lost. I doubt the NFL players would want to risk injury and jeopardize their lucrative careers for games they would not be paid for. Top college prospects? Nope. Same reason. Who’s left? Guys that would not/did not make practice squads. Sure they might be better players but those guys still have that NFL dream. I’m sure some players might be willing to risk injury for further notoriety but when would they practice? These other countries could field teams that have been practicing/playing together for months if not years. At best, the U.S. team would be thrown together at the last minute. Sure, the talent level might prove to be enough but it is by no means as easy a win as you imply above.

  5. Nigeria could put together a decent team if all first-gens in the NFL played for them. Haiti, too.

  6. American Football spreads when it figures out how to reduce the very high injury factor in the game.

    It’s not obvious to us as long time fans of the game but the injury factor is out of control compared to most sports.

    Boxing would never get IOC recognition at this point if it were not already in the games. Mixed Martial Arts won’t as an example.

  7. Love the Olympics but football will not be a sport in it….for god sakes they just got rid of wrestling; it’s a crime against humanity.

  8. I stopped watching the Olympics when they introduced “Dancing with a Ball” as a sport.

  9. Football is not a sport played all over the world. It’s laughable it’s thought to even receive consideration!

  10. FinFan68 says: May 28, 2013 8:53 PM

    “That last paragraph is pretty myopic. I also believe the U.S. has the best collection of football players in the world, but, think a bit before spouting off something like that. (Assuming the recognition and logistics of playing the game in the Olympics are worked out) Who do you think will play for the U.S.? Pros? Nope. The teams would balk because their huge investments could be permanently lost. I doubt the NFL players would want to risk injury and jeopardize their lucrative careers for games they would not be paid for. Top college prospects? Nope. Same reason. Who’s left? Guys that would not/did not make practice squads. Sure they might be better players but those guys still have that NFL dream. I’m sure some players might be willing to risk injury for further notoriety but when would they practice? These other countries could field teams that have been practicing/playing together for months if not years. At best, the U.S. team would be thrown together at the last minute. Sure, the talent level might prove to be enough but it is by no means as easy a win as you imply above.”

    Tim Tebow.

  11. With the collapse of the European Football League, I think only the US and Canada have American football leagues, college or pro.

    What’s the point of having an Olympic sport with only 2 teams?

  12. It basically would be used as an additional “combine” for the NFL like the senior bowl.

    The U.S. would still roll and the NFL would make another billion by expanding the game.

    It would also be a great way for international players to gain recognition outside of the traditional college ranks.

  13. Can you imagine trying to pick the US team?

    Most likely scenario… only backups would be on the team because of injury concerns. Get a couple more reps to impress a general manager or two.

    No way a Rodgers, Brady, Manning, Flacco, or Brees level player steps onto that field.

  14. Actually, Canada beat the USA 23-17 in the 2012 U-19 World CUp finals, and the Canadians aren’t even used to playing by American rules. So don’t count on that gold medal yet.

  15. Just not a good fit at the moment. One way or the other. It would not be good for football or for the Olympics. The day “american football” is truely a global sport we can revisit but I dont think any of us reading today will live long enough….

  16. Well Mr. thestrategyexpert you failed miserably in your research (which was obviously nil).

    Goodell is not apart of the IFAF. In fact, when you look them up (Copy/Paste + Google = 10 seconds) and find the About link you’ll discover that between the Presidium and the Executive Board there is only 1 American who is apart of this organization.

    Shocking. I didn’t expect to find Goodell on the list but I did expect to find a lot more americans. So it appears there are a few more countries interested in American Football. ~shrug~

    This is still NOT reason enough to create a London NFL team. Ludicrous to force that team to fly 8 hours 8 times a season and other teams 8 times a season. The press already talks about the advantages/disadvantages of teams having to fly across the country to play a game. This would take it to a whole new level. If they want more games in London then form a new european league but leave ours alone!

  17. American (and Canadian) football is unique to us, a sport that is truly much like apple pie. The rest of the world has soccer, which is their cup of tea. NFL Europe didn’t exactly pack ’em in (if they had they’d still be in business), with many of those attending games, U.S. servicemen. Quite frankly, I fail to see what the Olympics would do for us. Except maybe to decimate our teams every four years, as the Olympic committee culled “only the best” for the national team.

  18. Brilliant! The International Community has spoken.

    Now the Vikings and Steelers should be allowed to skip the stupid London game.

  19. The IOC and other international organizations like FIFA have become quite anti-American since 2000. They got rid of baseball and softball yet brought back rugby and continue to allow trampoline, synchronized swimming, and little girls dancing with ribbons. They gave the Olympics to other nations despite much better bids by US cities. FIFA inexplicably awarded the World Cup to Dubai. Yeah, soccer in 130 degree weather in the Middle East. Great call there FIFA.

    That said, football in the Olympics is just an absurd idea. No one else plays except Canada.

  20. The lack of perspective or thought in this article reflects the ongoing American behavior of referring to the Super Bowl winner as “world champions” when they don’t play against anyone outside of the US. It’s completely egocentric and ethnocentric. If they really want to convince the INTERNATIONAL Olympic Committee to acknowledge the sport, how about doing more to encourage international interest than just sending over an off-season minor league out that way.

    I love the game, and it is by far the most entertaining game available to watch during the season. But basketball, hockey and baseball are all played, watched and adored more internationally than football. And the fact we choose to call our game by the same name already in use by a significantly more popular world-wide sport probably doesn’t help much either…

  21. I can’t believe I’m saying this with a masters degree in ancient history but, who cares about the Olympics, it bores me to freakin death, I would place watching a javelin throwing match on the same plane as watching a lifetime movie.

    Plus that little French d-bag who runs the IOC is an arrogant fairy

  22. gridiron football has no business being in the olympics. not a big international sport. same reason why baseball and softball were bumped from the olympics. big in America does not qualify a sport for olympic status.

  23. Every Winter Olympics sport has to take place on a surface of ice or snow, per the Olympic Charter, so football would have to be a Summer Games sport.

  24. I understand there’s a bunch of Americans who would like to see Football in the Olympics.. but let’s get real, who would the Americans play?? There’s no other country in the world who would even be able to step on the same field as these NFL players who dedicate their whole lives to playing the game.. in other countries, they are lucky to even see American football played on TV. So wouldn’t this be a little one sided??

  25. Opening to closing ceremonies span a period of 17 days. Many teams complain about the Sunday to Thursday short week. If you field 16 teams, it’s a 4 game bracket to the gold medal. 4 games in 16 days? (16 because they would refuse to play on opening ceremony day). Then you have to think about the “pool” play that most team sports play, rather than straight bracket. That would possibly add another game into the mix. And the final question would be how does a country qualify a team for the Olympics? Most sports have qualifying tournaments via international competitions I believe. Of course dream teams like basketball may just get an automatic bid due to professional play I presume. The Olympics just are not an acceptable venue for American football, even if it was a worldwide sport in my opinion.

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