Tuesday, April 08, 2008

WHAT'S WRONG

Not much going on. I ran an easy 6 miles while watching the NCAA men’s basketball championship game. I’m to the point in my life where usually I don’t care who wins, I just want to see a good game. So it was nice to finally see a good game! It seemed like the last 10 tournament games were all won by 20 points.

Has anyone else out there been listening to any of the Runnerville weekly podcast or their Toni and Matt show? If so, what do you think about them? At first I found them interesting, but now I’m kind of getting bored. They keep hammering the “what’s wrong with our sport” drum. It’s getting very tiresome.

One interesting topic is; does the Olympic movement actually hurt the sport of running? If you think about it, the sports that have athletes that are successful, monetarily, don’t put all their emphasis on the Olympics. Sports like baseball, hockey, basketball, tennis, soccer, etc., are part of the Olympics, but their athletes don’t focus entirely on the Games. And football, golf, and Nascar aren’t even Olympic sports, yet their athletes are able to earn a decent living.

So the question becomes; would our athletes be better off, financially, if there was more emphasis on the sport, year-in and year-out rather than just for a couple of weeks every 4 years? Maybe that means developing some sort of road racing series or a track and field league. I don’t have the answers, but with things like bull riding, ultimate fighting, bass fishing, etc. getting more air time than running, it seems like there could be an opportunity to increase exposure.

Unfortunately, I’m more willing to bet that people just don’t care about being entertained by runners or track and field athletes – no matter how it’s packaged. And no matter how incredible the athletes are – which ties in with this comic that Eric sent me last week;

Quote of the day;

“I don’t remember my victories. Only the losses. The losses I see every step of.” – Dyrol Burleson

3 comments:

Mike said...

I think one of the problems with running is getting the elite athletes to show up at the same meet and compete in the same event against one another. So many of them seem to be afraid to race against good competition in anything other than handpicked ideal conditions once a year. I was excited to see the milrose games was on TV this spring, not so excited to see only 1 elite miler show up. Why can't Lagat & Webb go head to head on a regular basis - that would generate some excitement and interest, same thing with the sprinters it's crazy how often the top guys duck one another.

Anonymous said...

Running will never be popular as a spectator sports. It just doesn't lend itself well to TV or crowds. Have you ever stood on the sidelines of a major race? An elite athlete appears in the distance, blows by you in 5-10 seconds, and is gone. That's it.

Running at the elite level looks effortless...ordinary fans have no idea how much work they put into it, and how much talent it requires.

Personally...I like the fact that running is like an iceberg...a small portion shows above water, but underneath, 98% of the mass is hidden.

Chad said...

Mike, yeah I guess the runner psyche is a fragile thing.

Anonymous, you're probably right about it never being popular. However, just because an elite runner flies by someone standing still, it doesn't mean that's how it has to appear on TV.

"...ordinary fans have no idea how much work they put into it, and how much talent it requires."

Yeah, that's what the comic is saying too.