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The Game's Not Over

The Game's Not Over

In Defense of Football

On November 17, 1968, the Oakland Raiders staged a last-minute comeback against the New York Jets, scoring two touchdowns in the final minute for a dramatic finale. But there was a problem: no one saw it. NBC, broadcasting the game nationally, cut away with 1:01 remaining and the Jets still leading to air a previously scheduled movie, Heidi. The ensuing public outcry was so significant that the rules for football broadcasting were quickly and forever changed.

In this perceptive, finely argued book, Gregg Easterbrook shows that the so-called “Heidi Bowl” was not just an isolated bizarre moment. It was the beginning of the football era in America. The sport boomed alongside television, soon becoming our national campfire–one of the few points of agreement across the political spectrum and a genuine source of community even as religion’s influence waned. It is no coincidence, Easterbrook argues, that we now see in football the same issues that we perceive elsewhere in America–including recent problems with bullying, violence against women, racial injustice, and financial skulduggery.

These problems are significant, and many have been moved to limit their engagement with the NFL’s venal culture–or boycott it entirely. Yet as Easterbrook shows, there’s something here worth saving. He expounds on the benefits of football, and throws its many problems into relief, finally arguing that the work of reforming and changing one of our great pastimes is American as the game itself.
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Genre: Nonfiction / Sports & Recreation / Football

On Sale: December 8th 2015

Price: $13.99 / $17.99 (CAD)

Page Count: 240

ISBN-13: 9781610396493

What's Inside

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Reader Reviews


“Mr. Easterbrook's analysis suggests that the game is becoming safer even as it becomes more compelling and competitive. The debate over football and its risks will continue, but both NFL fans and foes will enjoy this readable and entertaining book.” –James Freeman, Wall Street Journal

“Conflicted fans might take some solace in Easterbrook's unabashed enthusiasm for the game and its strategies.” –James Sullivan, Boston Globe

“A breezy read that provides cultural context to accompany another football season…It offers comfort to fellow fans that the sport deserves their attention and even their love.” –Kirkus Reviews

"With a distinct voice, Easterbrook makes important observations about the game that will have a broader appeal than just football fans." –Library Journal

“ a serious author with serious points to make.” –New York Times

“Easterbrook...writes nothing that is not brilliant.” –Chicago Tribune
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