Chargers Copyright “L.A. Chargers” – What Does it Mean?

It appears that the owners of the San Diego Chargers recently filed for copyright protection for the terms “Los Angeles Chargers” and “L.A. Chargers.”  None of this means for certain that the team is moving to L.A., but it is certainly a necessary step in that process.  To read the story click here.  From the story:

“Approval of the applications can take several months, and if the Chargers don’t use the marks within six months after the team is granted approval, the applications would be considered abandoned. But that timeframe can be extended multiple times, Saivar said. So even if the Chargers don’t decide to move to LA immediately, the trademark applications could prove helpful to the team down the road.

One other interesting note:  The attorney of record named on the trademark applications is not an employee of the Chargers. It is Anastasia Danias, a senior vice president and in-house attorney with the NFL. At the very least, Saivar says, this suggests the league has signed off on whatever the Chargers decide to do.”

If you have read my book you know that the Chargers were one of the original eight 1960 American Football League franchises and were based in Los Angeles before moving to San Diego the next year.  Not sure if they will move back to L.A. or not but one thing is for sure: those powder blue uniforms with the lightning bolts are among the best in the history of the NFL!

That’s it for now football fans.


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The Real Crime in Deflategate

It’s been about one year since “deflategate” roiled the NFL world.  In case you were locked away in a cave for the past 12 months, “deflategate” involved allegations that the New England Patriots and star quarterback, Tom Brady, illegally deflated footballs during last year’s AFC playoffs.  While I have no great love or hate for the Patriots, I did think the $3M investigation and the weak (too be kind) Wells Report and conclusions seemed fishy  – as noted in my book.  It appears they were exactly that.  The New York Times published a story today discussing how a number of noted and independent scientists (MIT, Carnegie Mellon, Univ of Chicago, etc.) found the research and report written by the expert hired by Wells and the NFL would not even meet the quality of a bad graduate student.  The scientists were able to show that the deflation of the footballs was consistent with well known scientific laws around the behavior of gasses in a cold environment.  Click here to read the story.  From the story:

“When he was done, he concluded that Exponent had made a series of basic errors. Leonard’s work showed the exact opposite of Exponent’s conclusions: The drop in the Patriots’ footballs’ p.s.i was consistent with the Ideal Gas Law; the smaller drop in pressure in the Colts’ balls was not. (Leonard surmises that because the Colts’ balls were tested after the Patriots’ balls, they had warmed up again.)

The edited lecture went up on YouTube on Dec. 1 and has been viewed more than 17,000 times. It is utterly convincing. Leonard told me that if an M.I.T. undergraduate made the kinds of mistakes that Exponent made, “I would force them to repeat the experiment and correct the analysis.” Based on his study of the data, Leonard now says: “I am convinced that no deflation occurred and that the Patriots are innocent. It never happened.”

Brady of course ultimately won the battle with the Commissioner over the issue, but the owner of the Patriots paid a steep price for the NFL’s bogus science.  Meaning, the real crime here is the made up crisis put on by Roger Goodell and the NFL front office.  The second crime was not dealing properly with the Patriots’ video-taping incident back in 2007 which led to the other owners wanting Goodell to “get the Patriots” this time around.

And if the Patriots win the Super Bowl again this year…

That’s it for now football fans.


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First Female Coach in NFL!

Pretty exciting news today that the NFL hired its first full-time female coach.   The Buffalo Bills hired Kathryn Smith as Special Teams Quality Control, an assistant coach position on Rex Ryan’s staff.  Click here to read the story.  In July 2015, the Arizona Cardinals hired Jen Welter as a pre-season intern, coaching linebackers.  Ms. Smith, however, will be the NFL’s first full-time regular season female coach.  As the father of two daughters, I think this is great as — while my girls will probably not want to coach football — any new ground for women is welcomed news!

“I consulted with (Cardinals coach) Bruce Arians on this since he was really the first NFL head coach to make this kind of move when he hired a female linebackers coach through the summer,” Ryan continued. “You can see the success some of these young ladies are having in the coaching profession, such as the young lady (Becky Hammon) that is an assistant to Coach (Greg) Popovich at the San Antonio Spurs, and realize how exciting this is for women like Kathryn Smith as well as the Bills organization.”

Hats off to the Bills and to the Cardinals!  And best wishes to Ms. Smith where every steps she takes up the ladder will be breaking new ground.

That’s it for now football fans.


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Woodpeckers May Lead the Way to Prevent Football Concussions

A new device may soon be available to help eliminate concussions in football (and other sports, e.g., ice hockey, NASCAR, etc.).  The technology is based on woodpeckers and the fact that they can bang their head against a tree repeatedly and not suffer any ill-effects. It’s not a new helmet however:

“Helmets are good at preventing skull fractures, but they can’t prevent concussions. That’s because the brain floats in fluid inside the skull, like an egg yolk inside a shell. No matter how well the outside is padded, the brain is still damaged when it sloshes against the sides of the skull during a collision. Bailes’s innovation is a collar that lightly constricts the jugular vein, which has the effect of reducing the jiggle room inside the cranium.”

Rather, the technology is based on the physiology of woodpeckers:

“He began studying woodpeckers. One of their most unusual features is a long tongue, which in some species is supported by bones that wrap all the way around the head. Smith theorizes these compress the woodpecker’s neck veins as it thrusts its head forward, increasing the volume of blood between its brain and its skull. Smith says this extra fluid “works like Bubble Wrap” to help keep the brain from knocking against the skull. He was convinced that the same effect could be reproduced in humans, perhaps with some kind of collar.”

Click here to read the full story.

This could be a real game changer (no pun intended) if it really works (and a lot of “ifs” here).  Eliminating or significantly reducing head injuries in football would be a godsend to the players (at all levels), the NFL owners, and the fans – who are often conflicted between the love of big hits and concern about the well-being of their favorite players.

Fingers crossed on this one.

That’s it for now football fans,


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Rams Moving Back to L.A. – a History of a Storied Franchise and their Uniforms

The big news is that the Rams are moving back to Los Angeles.  While I think it sucks that the great city of St. Louis (where I lived for 8 years) loses another NFL franchise, it is just par for the course in these days where money is king.  I also think it is awful that the Rams owner felt the need to trash the city as part of his escape plan.  I’d like to think that the saying “he’ll get his in the end” would apply, I also know that Santa and the Easter Bunny are not real, so let’s face it, the only thing that is going to happen to Stan is he’s going to get richer with this move.  Oh yea, he’ll also die but that’s in everyone’s future so no special karma there.

Long wind up to a great article showing the history of the Rams unique uniforms.  As you know from my book, they were the first team to use helmet logos, when a Ram player painted “horns” on the sides of their blue helmets back in 1948 (see picture below).  To read more about this and to see how the Rams’ uniforms changed (along with their home cities – they were originally from Cleveland), click here.

That’s it for now football fans.