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Old 09-07-2002, 02:43 PM   #1
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STAT: What do you know about football?

Quick bc I know nothing and in like 4 hours I have to pretend I do.

Anyone?

Beuller?
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Old 09-07-2002, 02:51 PM   #2
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Old 09-07-2002, 02:54 PM   #3
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Re: STAT: What do you know about football?

Quote:
Originally posted by MonaVox
Quick bc I know nothing and in like 4 hours I have to pretend I do.

Anyone?

Beuller?
Assuming you are asking about American Football.....

There are FOUR QUARTERS in a game, each fifteen minutes long. If a player goes OUTSIDE the lines at the end of a play, the clock stops (thus, each quarter really lasts about 30 minutes on a regular clock).

Each team has FOUR DOWNS (plays) to make it 10 YARDS forward from where they have the ball. If they make it within the four downs, then the downs start over from where the ball is. (is. first play they make it three yards. Second play they go another eight yards. That is 11 yards from the first play, so they now get four more downs (plays) from where the ball now is). If they don't make it ten yards in those four downs, the ball gets TURNED OVER to the other team.

When the guy with the ball runs over the end line, it is a GOAL and they get SIX POINTS. The teams then gets to try to KICK it through the goal posts for AN EXTRA POINT (thus getting a total of SEVEN points) or they can RUN for TWO EXTRA POINTS (thus getting a total of EIGHT points).

Sometimes when the team doesn't think they will make it ten yards in those four downs, they will try to kick it through the goal posts on their fourth down. This is a FIELD GOAL and is worth THREE points.

I'm not even going to go into all the penelties and stuff. Just make sure you know the key words (in capital letters) and make sure your mouth is full of food whenever someone turns to ask you a question about the game.
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Old 09-07-2002, 03:49 PM   #4
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you know I never knew about downs

I guess that's like basbeall innings kinda?

tanks

aaaaaaah
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Old 09-07-2002, 04:09 PM   #5
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(The six-point goal Lynne is talking about is a "touchdown," by the way.)

Perhaps I can give an explanation from a different perspective:

The game is ALL about TERRITORY. At any point during the game, one team is trying to seize territory by moving the football down to the other end of the field, and the other team is trying to stop them. The side that is moving the ball is called the "offense," and the side trying to stop them is the "defense."

("Defense" is pronounced "DEE-fense," not "de-FENSE.")

THE TIME

As already mentioned, there are four quarters, each 15 minutes long - though the clock does NOT continually run.

The 1st quarter starts with a kickoff - one team kicking the ball to the other team. (They flip a coin to see who decides who kicks and who decides what side of the field they want.)

When the 1st quarter ends, the two teams switch sides of the field and pick up where they left off.

When the 2nd quarter ends (ending the "first half"), both teams go to the locker room and rest (in a timed period called "halftime").

The 3rd quarter begins just like the 1st quarter: with a kickoff.

When the 3rd quarter ends, they switch sides and keep playing.

When the 4th quarter ends, the games over: whoever scored more points wins. If there's a tie, the tie is broken through additional play (though the rules are bit odd, and they differ between college and professional).

THE FIELD

The field is 100 yards long (1 yard = 3 feet), with 10 yard endzones at each end (for a grand total of 120 yards). These "endzones" are target areas of each team; if they can move the ball into the other team's endzone, they score a touchdown - which I'll get to in a moment.

Let's say that Tennessee and Florida (two Southern colleges) are playing. As you look from one end of the field to the other, you'll see the following:

- The Tennessee goal-line
- The Tenn. 10-yard line
- The Tenn. 20-yard line
- The Tenn. 30-yard line
- The Tenn. 40-yard line
- The 50-yard line (midfield)
- The Florida 40-yard line
- The Fla. 30-yard line
- The Fla. 20-yard line
- The Fla. 10-yard line
- The Fla. goal-line

Tennesse wants to get the ball into the Florida endzone, and vice versa.

THE KICKOFF

Each half begins with a kickoff. If a team scores, there's another kickoff: the team that scored kicks off to the other team to give it a chance to score right back.

In the kickoff, each team is on their own side of the field. The kicking team kicks the ball to the receiving team, which can catch the ball and run as far as they can: the more they run at THIS point, the less ground the actual offense has to cover to score. Very rarely, the guy who caught the ball can ACTUALLY get to other end of the field and score points.

If the receiver decides he'd rather not run, but just make sure he doesn't drop the ball or anything, he can wave his hands - calling for a "fair catch". If he does that, the play stops when he catches it, and nobody can tackle him (can hit him).

If the kicker kicks the ball into the endzone and isn't caught (or the receiver calls a "fair catch" in the endzone), then the ball is automatically moved to the 20-yard line.

If the ball is kicked out of bounds (to one sideline or the other, not PAST the endzone), it's considered a penalty, and the ball is automatically placed at the 35-yard line - a good starting field position for the offense.

THE DRIVE

Each attempt to move the ball down the field is called a "drive."

During the drive, the offense is required to move the ball at least 10 yards (30 feet) within four plays, called downs. For example:

- Before the drive, there was a kickoff: Florida kicked the ball to Tennessee, and kicked the ball into the endzone. Tennesse's drive then starts at its own 20-yard line, with the intention of moving the ball to the Florida endzone.

- The first play of the drive is called "1st and 10 at the Tennessee 20." This means it's first down, and Tennesse has to move the ball AT LEAST 10 yards to get a first down. The ball is at the Tennessee 20-yard line.

- Let's say Tenn. is able to move the ball 7 yards. That brings up "2nd and 3 at the Tennessee 27."

- Let's then say Tenn. moves the ball another 5 yards. That brings up "1st and 10 at the the Tenn. 32." Even though Tenn. got more than the required 3 yards, the next set of downs still begins "1st and 10."

(A bit of terminology: the 10-yard interval is measured with two large sticks connected by a 10-yard chain. Hence, the offence wants to "move the chain" or "move the sticks." They want to get another first down.)

Put simply, the offense can move the ball by either running the ball or passing it - throwing it to a teammate. The player who usually passes the ball, or gives the ball to the guy who will run with it, is the "quarterback." He is the "field general" of the offense.

ENDING THE DRIVE

There are several ways a drive can end:

1) Touchdown: The offense can score a touchdown, meaning the guy with the ball runs into the endzone or a player catches the ball in the endzone. The team that scores get 6 points and gets one chance - from very close to the endzone - to get a point or two after the touchdown. If they kick the ball between the goal posts, they score 1 point. If they can get the ball into the endzone, they score a "2-point conversion."

2) Field goal: The offense can decide to try to kick the ball between the "upright" bars of the goal post from whereever they are. If they do, they get three points. Generally speaking, they usually do this on 4th down from the opposing team's 35-yard line or closer.

Say Tennessee is on the Florida 35-yard line and want to kick a field goal. There's an additional ten yards from the goal line to the "uprights", and the kicker will be about six yards behind "the line of scrimmage" (where the ball starts at the beginning of a play).

35 + 10 + 6 = 51 yards, which is about as long a kick as you will see.

3) Punt: Generally, this ALSO happens on 4th down: if you're too far away to score a field goal, you can kick the ball TO THE OTHER TEAM, and they start THEIR drive where they catch the ball (if they "fair-catch") or where you tackle the guy who caught the ball.

4) Turnover: If the guy running with the ball DROPS it, it's called a "fumble." If the defense can grab the ball, that becomes a turnover.

Say Tennessee fumbles the ball at their own 35-yard line. Florida recovers the fumble, and THEIR drive would start at the Tenn. 35-yard line.

Likewise, if a defensive player catches a pass, that's called an "interception," another turnover.

5) Turnover "on downs:" If it's 4th down, and the offense can "convert" or get a 1st down, it's a turnover on downs.

Say Tennesse has the ball at the Florida 20-yard line, 4th and 2. They COULD try a field goal, but they decide to go for a first down (hoping they can eventually get a touchdown from this drive). If they fail, Florida gets the ball at the same place on the field.

Turnovers like this also occur if a field goal is missed, or if a punt is blocked by the other team.

6) Safety: you're unlikely to see this, but if the offense gets pushed back (through penalties or a very quick defense) and the guy with the ball gets tackled IN THEIR OWN ENDZONE, it's called a safety.

The defense scores two points for its own team, and its team gets the ball.

PENALTIES

Finally, I won't go into details about what are penalties and what arent, but, generally, penalties result in adjusting where the ball is but resetting the down.

If the offense commits a penalty, "1st and 10" could become "1st and 15", the ball gets moved back 5 yards, but it's still 1st down.


Hope this helps.

Bubba
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Old 09-07-2002, 04:09 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally posted by MonaVox
you know I never knew about downs

I guess that's like basbeall innings kinda?

tanks

aaaaaaah
I was gonna say that no, the quarters are like the innings and the balls/strikes are like the downs, but now I see what you are saying. Although you need to realize that one team could potentially have the ball for a whole quarter or so (well, you have 30 seconds to make a play and if you start on the 1 yart line and go four downs per play, that would be..... um, over a quarters worth of time

Have fun!
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Old 09-07-2002, 04:16 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally posted by U2Lynne
I was gonna say that no, the quarters are like the innings and the balls/strikes are like the downs, but now I see what you are saying. Although you need to realize that one team could potentially have the ball for a whole quarter or so (well, you have 30 seconds to make a play and if you start on the 1 yart line and go four downs per play, that would be..... um, over a quarters worth of time

Have fun!
Um, I don't see the analogy, actually. Downs are just, well, downs. They have no really good baseball analogue.

In terms of "burning clock," the longest drive I've seen takes about ten minutes off the clock.

If you run the ball and get tackled in bounds, the clock keeps running.

If you run the ball and run out of bounds, the clock stops. If you pass the ball and the pass is incomplete, the clock stops.

AND, you can take a "time-out" to stop the clock: each team has 3 time-outs per half and can use them at the end of any play.

Clock control becomes VERY important toward the end of the game. If you have the lead AND the ball, you still want to score to put more points between you and your opponent, but you also want to take as much time off the clock as you can. That way, your opponent has that much LESS time to tie the game.
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Old 09-07-2002, 04:26 PM   #8
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And don't let this game overwhelm you: I've been going to football games for 21 years (and I'm only 23 years old), and I'm still learning about the strategy of the game.

(And, ultimately, if you know these basics, don't hesitate to ask questions between plays; most guys I know like girls who show an interest in the game. )

Bubba
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Old 09-07-2002, 04:28 PM   #9
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Omy total goodness

thankyou Bubba!

o_O Wow I can do calculus, but for some reason I'll have to read this things a few times.

WHAT IF I just play the helpless female?
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Old 09-07-2002, 04:34 PM   #10
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Heh: calculus is sometimes more logical.

Playing the helpless female should be okay if one rule is remembered: ask question between plays.

And, at any rate, I'll be here awhile listening to the Auburn game on the Internet. Feel free to ask any question that comes to mind.

Bubba
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Old 09-07-2002, 04:44 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally posted by Achtung Bubba

Playing the helpless female should be okay if one rule is remembered: ask question between plays.

Bubba
Ah yes, I forgot that very important part about how men *love* their football and do not want to be talked to during that time.

<i>However</i>, if you have ever wanted something from your guy, now is the time to get him to say yes. Just start talking *during* the plays, and he will try to shut you up, now is the time to strike! Some of these guys will say yes to anything just to get peace and quiet and get back to their game!

{{{running and ducking}}}
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Old 09-07-2002, 05:00 PM   #12
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We're also, generally speaking, terrible at multi-tasking: that's what's so good about baseball AND football. Unlike basketball (which I also like) and soccer, there's enough time between plays to discuss the game if it's good - or completely random topics if the game is so lop-sided it's boring.

Speaking of plays, I should go into a *little* more detail about individual plays...
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Old 09-07-2002, 05:18 PM   #13
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YOU MEAN THERE'S MORE?



I FOUND A RED SHIRT! AT LAST!
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Old 09-07-2002, 05:26 PM   #14
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PLAYS

Each drive is made up of a series of plays, and each play is defined, in part by the following information:

Down: 1st down, 2nd down, etc. This gives you an idea of how many plays the offense has to get another first down.

To Go: 1st and 10, 2nd and 3, etc. This tells you how many yards until the next first down.

(If the situation is "1st and goal," that means the offense is so close to the goal that they have 4 downs to score a touchdown: they CANNOT get another 1st down.)

Ball At: 1st and 10 at the Florida 20. This tells you where the ball is - how many yards they have to move the ball to get a touch down. If Florida is at its own 20, there is 100-20 = 80 yards until a touchdown. If it's at the opponent's 20, it has 20 yards until a "TD."

At the beginning of each play, the ball is placed between the two teams at what is called "the line of scrimmage." If the ball is moved PAST the line during the play, the offense gained yardage; otherwise, there is "no gain" or it lost yards.

The OFFENSIVE LINE lines up to one side of the line of scrimmage, the DEFENSIVE LINE lines up on the other side. Behind the offensive line are the BACKS: the quarterback (the "field general") and, for example, running backs and tailbacks - who usually run the ball. To each side of the offensive line are the WIDE RECEIVERS, who usually catch passes.

Behind the defensive line are LINEBACKERS, and behind them are DEFENSIVE BACKS. These backs usually try to prevent successful passes, and the linebackers either help them OR help the defensive line get through the offensive line (something called a "blitz," like the German blitz of WWII).

The play begins when an offensive lineman (the "center") "snaps" the ball, handing it off to an offensive back (usually the "QB" or quarterback). This player can run the ball himself, hand the ball to another back, pitch the ball under-hand to a back, or pass it to a receiver.

(If one of the offensive linemen or receivers move before the snap of the ball, it's a "false start" penalty - a loss of 5 yards and the down is replayed. If one of the defensive players crosses the line of scrimmage (the "neutral zone"), it's "offsides," a defensive penalty.)

(An offensive back CAN move before the start of a play, but only one back at a time can be "in motion.")

If the pass is incomplete - if the ball hits the ground - the ball is "dead" and the play is over. Otherwise - if a runner drops the ball, if the handoff doesn't work, if an underhand pitch isn't caught - the ball is "live," and can be recovered by the other team (a turnover).

The play ends with an incomplete pass, but that's not the only way a play can end:

- It can end when the ball-carrier runs out of bounds or scores a touchdown.

- It can end when the ball-carrier is "tackled," when a defensive player grabs the guy and brings him down to the ground, so that a knee hits the turf.

- In college rules, it can end when the ball-carrier's knee hits the ground, even if he just slipped.

I love the defense, so I will mention one more thing about the play: the "D" loves to stop a drive, but there are other things they like to do: cause a turnover (a fumble or interception) OR tackle the ball-carrier BEHIND the line of scrimmage. If they tackle the QB that way, it's called a sack.

The defense LOVES to sack the QB.

Bubba
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Old 09-07-2002, 05:28 PM   #15
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Re: YOU MEAN THERE'S MORE?

Quote:
Originally posted by MonaVox


I FOUND A RED SHIRT! AT LAST!
What game are you watching? Who are you pulling for?

By the way, "red shirt" is also a term in college football. A student-athlete can go to school for 5 years but can only PLAY for 4 years. If he chooses to defer his freshman year and start playing his second year, he's called a "redshirted freshman."

There's also the "red zone," that part of the field between the 20-yard line and the closest endzone. A good "redzone offense" scores a LOT when they reach this area; a good "redzone defense" prevents a LOT of touchdowns from this area.

Bubba

PS - Auburn's beating West Carolina 14-0; Alabama's losing to Oklahoma 23-3 at the half. Today's a good day.
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