Paste Magazine: The Vibrant Online Community of College Football Videogames

Paste Magazine: The Vibrant Online Community of College Football Videogames. “There’s hardly ever a reason to play an old sports game unless you’re pained with deep nostalgia. Yet it turns out nostalgia is easy to come by if they stop improving the game, or stop making a series altogether. The thirst and hunger created by the unfilled hole in the market sparks innovation among enthusiasts. Modding games is a pretty common process across genres, but the fans around NCAA Football have given the defunct franchise something most sports games don’t get: longevity.”

CNN: Kyrie Irving ‘will not play or practice’ with the Brooklyn Nets due to vaccination status

CNN: Kyrie Irving ‘will not play or practice’ with the Brooklyn Nets due to vaccination status. “Brooklyn Nets general manager Sean Marks has confirmed Kyrie Irving ‘will not play or practice with the team until he is eligible to be a full participant,’ as issues relating to the star guard’s vaccination status continue. On Friday, a New York City Hall official told CNN that Irving will be allowed to practice at the team’s facility but will not be eligible to play in the Nets’ home games at Barclays Center due to the city’s Covid-19 vaccine mandate.”

Associated Press: Flush with COVID-19 aid, schools steer funding to sports

Associated Press: Flush with COVID-19 aid, schools steer funding to sports. “One Wisconsin school district built a new football field. In Iowa, a high school weight room is getting a renovation. Another in Kentucky is replacing two outdoor tracks — all of this funded by the billions of dollars in federal pandemic relief Congress sent to schools this year. The money is part of a $123 billion infusion intended to help schools reopen and recover from the pandemic. But with few limits on how the funding can be spent, The Associated Press found that some districts have used large portions to cover athletics projects they couldn’t previously afford.”

Australasian Leisure: New Zealand Created Bot Aims To Eradicate Social Media Abuse Of Athletes

Australasian Leisure: New Zealand Created Bot Aims To Eradicate Social Media Abuse Of Athletes. “Aiming to reverse New Zealanders Jacqueline Comer and Rebecca Lee have created the FairPlayBot -a piece of technology that can be attached to social media accounts to automatically respond to negative messages with positive ones. Licensed and operated by Canada-based Areto Labs, the technology uses machine learning to analyse tweets directed at athletes, commentators and officials in real-time, and automatically and immediately changes the conversation by cheering on positive interactions from fans or calling out those who are abusive.”

NBC News: NBA draws line as stars like Kyrie Irving, Andrew Wiggins balk at Covid vaccine

NBC News: NBA draws line as stars like Kyrie Irving, Andrew Wiggins balk at Covid vaccine. “Irving, 29, is part of a group of current NBA players — which includes Golden State Warriors star Andrew Wiggins, the Washington Wizards’ Bradley Beal and the Orlando Magic’s Jonathan Isaac — who have chosen not to get vaccinated as the NBA 2021-22 season is about to unfold during the ongoing pandemic.”

Archives: State Championship Programs Now Available (Iowa High School Athletic Association)

New-to-me, from the Iowa High School Athletic Association: Archives: State Championship Programs Now Available. “The Iowa High School Athletic Association’s online archive at ArcaSearch has added its complete collection of state championship programs through the 2019-20 school year. ArcaSearch provides digitized and searchable archives of printed publications to preserve invaluable history for research and review. These programs, which feature all 11 sanctioned IHSAA sports and date back as early as the 1906 State Track & Field Meet, join the annual Summary Books (1967-2005) in the current archive.”

Michigan Live: COVID contributing to record rate of Michigan high school football forfeits, but not the only factor

Michigan Live: COVID contributing to record rate of Michigan high school football forfeits, but not the only factor. “Through the first five weeks of the 2021 prep football season, 74 games have been decided via forfeit, which, according to the Michigan High School Athletic Association online database, is the state’s second highest single-season total, behind the 94 forfeits from last year’s six-week regular season and playoffs.”

Sports Illustrated: Karl-Anthony Towns Opens Up About His Season of Grief

Sports Illustrated: Karl-Anthony Towns Opens Up About His Season of Grief. “On Jan. 15, Karl-Anthony Towns tested positive for COVID-19. Just nine months after the 25-year-old watched his mother, Jacqueline Towns, die of the same disease that also killed his uncle and five other members of his family, this was a nightmare scenario. Towns received treatment at an area hospital, then quarantined at home for the next few weeks, isolated from friends and family. Basketball had been the closest thing in his life to an outlet. Now, by himself, he had no choice but to confront the pain that followed his mother’s sudden death.

SportAndDev: New tool addresses racial inequities in sport

SportAndDev: New tool addresses racial inequities in sport. “The free online Racial Equity Assessment & Learning Tool (REAL) allows users to self-assess their internal systems and practices and provides steps that can be taken to improve an organization’s ability to address structural racism. U.S.-based sports organizations are strongly encouraged to use the free tool to help support work to advance racial equity across the sector.” This is one of those “answer a bunch of questions and get a PDF download” tools, but unlike many of those it does NOT ask for your email or any other personal information. (You do have to answer some general questions about your organization.)

USOPC: American hopefuls for Beijing Games must have vaccine (Associated Press)

Associated Press: USOPC: American hopefuls for Beijing Games must have vaccine. “U.S. athletes trying to make the Winter Olympics will have to be fully vaccinated for COVID-19 under a groundbreaking new policy announced Wednesday by the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee. CEO Sarah Hirshland wrote in a letter obtained by The Associated Press that, starting Nov. 1, the USOPC will require staff, athletes and others utilizing training centers and other USOPC facilities to be vaccinated.”