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Indiana University football coach Kevin Wilson explains VR-enabled training to his players. Indiana University Athletics

Athletes look for an edge in a new place: virtual reality

Virtual reality technology is a radical departure from traditional video presentation, with myriad applications in both consumer media and in athletic practice.
Would a little extra pay make the Coyboys’ Demarco Murray more likely to take risks (like plowing headfirst into another player)? Would the threat of a fine deter him? Reuters

Does a running back’s pay affect his willingness to take risks?

It turns out professional football players are perfect lab rats for labor experiments, and the answer has implications well beyond the NFL.
Distraught Seattle Seahawks fans after their team lost the Super Bowl. Jason Redmond/Reuters

Worst coaching call ever? Hindsight bias and the Super Bowl

“The worst call in Super Bowl history,” read a headline in my hometown Seattle Times after Seahawks’ head coach Pete Carroll seemingly threw the game away with his ill-fated decision to pass – rather than…
There’s science going on here, no test tubes or lab coats necessary. USA Today Sports / Reuters

Super Bowl athletes are scientists at work

Seattle Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman gets called a lot of things. He calls himself the greatest cornerback in the NFL (and Seattle fans tend to agree). Sportswriters and some other players call…
The Patriots ran away with the AFC Championship. What did deflated footballs have to do with it? USA Today Sports / Reuters

Football physics and the science of Deflategate

News reports say that 11 of the 12 game balls used by the New England Patriots in their AFC championship game against the Indianapolis Colts were deflated, showing about 2 pounds per square inch (psi…
Many former NFL players face the future with despair: the years after retirement can include an array of physical and financial woes. USA Today Sports/Reuters

Is there life after football for NFL pros?

The cascade of woes that have befallen former NFL players has stunned fans and casual observers. Former NFL stars Junior Seau and Dave Duerson committed suicide. All-pro Warren Sapp went bankrupt after…
Is there more to the concussion crisis than what the science can tell us? Wikimedia Commons

Concussions aren’t only a medical issue

The sports media has a fascination with concussions. Not only is there a huge volume of stories about the issue, but there’s also an urgency to the tone of the reporting. The heightened coverage has served…
Watch your head. Soccer players via Wallenrock/Shutterstock.

What every parent should know about concussions

This fall, the deaths of three high school football players were linked to direct head injuries on the field of play and one collegiate football player’s death has been potentially attributed to unresolved…
Even at major NCAA Division I schools like Alabama, whether or not their athletic programs turn a profit varies by year. Tim Murphy/Flickr

Who actually funds intercollegiate athletic programs?

Parents, government officials, and tuition-paying students are all seeking solutions to the skyrocketing costs of higher education and the burden of student debt. Currently, public universities in America…
This isn’t trademar-geddon but the Redskins trademark cancellation is going to have serious long-term effects. EPA/ Larry W. Smith

Washington Redskins trademark is lost, but not the game … yet

On Wednesday the US Patent and Trademark Office cancelled the US trademark registration for the Washington Redskins football team. This is a big victory for Native American groups, and an important development…
FIFA suggests that 270 million people are involved in playing or officiating football around the world, with billions also tuning into the World Cup every four years. EPA/Sebastiao Moreira

It may be the World Cup, but how global is the ‘world game’?

In 1863, the newly formed English Football Association (FA) drew up and published the first Laws of the Game of football. The aim was to provide a set of universal rules to govern the various forms of…
Hurry up, the commercials are on soon. Elaine Thompson/AP

Forget Seahawks vs Broncos, ads are the Super Bowl stars

The XLVIII (that’s the 48th) contest has been held in New York and be fought out by the Seattle Seahawks and the Denver Broncos, with the Seahawks crushing the Broncos 43-8. Fox TV, which broadcast the…

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