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Thread: NFL to crackdown on football hooligans

  1. #1
    Pro Bowler Jigawatts's Avatar
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    NFL to crackdown on football hooligans

    http://msn.foxsports.com/nfl/story/8169916?MSNHPHMA

    Once again NFL commissioner Roger Goodell seems intent on breaking with the head-in-the-sand approach of his predecessor, Paul Tagliabue.

    For years as drunkenness and violence escalated at NFL stadiums the league's policy was, uh, good luck with that.


    But on Thursday Goodell announced he will be issuing a fan conduct policy that will hopefully forestall the nuclear option of banning alcohol at NFL games. After all, of the many revenue streams in pro sports, can any possibly be as lucrative as the stream of domestic beer selling for $8 a cup?

    "We want everyone to be able to come to our stadiums, behave properly, enjoy this experience but don't ruin it for others," said Goodell. "We will be focusing on that, including the implementation of an NFL fan conduct policy which we will have out prior to the season."

    If Goodell's new policy holds franchises accountable for the conduct of their fans the way he will now hold them financially accountable for the behavior of their players you can bet teams will crack down in a meaningful way.

    Here's a taste of what Goodell might consider improper behavior. Or perhaps this. For more disturbing images of what Goodell might define as ruining it for others go to YouTube and plug in "Raiders Chargers fight."

    McAfee Coliseum in Oakland and Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego might as well be octagons for all the impromptu mixed martial arts that break out when the Bolts and Raiders throw down. But unconscionable fan behavior is not a recent development.

    In 1995, when unruly Giant fans pelted the field and knocked the opposing equipment manager unconscious with ice-balls, the league might have thought it had a problem.

    In 1997, when over 60 fistfights broke out at Veterans Stadium in a nationally televised game, prompting Philadelphia to assign a municipal court judge to the stadium on game days in '98, the league might have thought it had a problem.

    In 2000, when that Raider fan stabbed a Charger fan, the league might have thought it had a problem.

    In 2001, when Browns fans showered the field with plastic beer bottles, the league might have thought it had a problem.

    In 2003, when three Charger fans beat a Jaguar fan into unconsciousness, the league might have thought it had a problem.

    And on and on until Goodell inherited an almost league-wide problem.

    But until now the NFL was loathe to admit that it had a drunken fan epidemic. So while it may be overdue, give Goodell credit for trying to improve his product by finally acknowledging one of its shortcomings.

    Maybe Goodell decided to take action because of the collective effect of so much anti-social behavior. Or maybe it was the Mardi Gras North that broke out at Gate D in the Meadowlands last year where kids at Jets games got to witness men screaming at women to bare their breasts (and women obliging). Or maybe it was the two shootings outside the Coliseum in Oakland before and after a Raiders-Chiefs game last fall that forced his hand.

    Cracking down on player misconduct has been a hallmark of the commissioner's early tenure (though Charles Grant's manslaughter charge and a shooting involving a gun owned by Marvin Harrison could not have been the offseason Goodell was hoping for after coming down hard on Pacman Jones and Chris Henry). But the fact is fans you know, the consumers of the product will have a lot more interaction with other fans than with the players. So Goodell's announcement is welcome news for the vast majority of football consumers who can take in a game and, yes, even suck down a few brews without wanting to assault anybody.

    At an infamous 1999 game between the Raiders and Chargers in San Diego, Raider legends Ben Davidson and Otis Sistrunk were so appalled by the out-of-control fan violence they left the stadium. Think about that.

    Davidson told the San Diego Union-Tribune after the game, "It's just a sad testament to our time."

    Davidson was listed at 6-foot-8, 275 pounds in his playing days and Sistrunk at 6-4, 265.

    Packers fans: Setting the example for the rest of the NFL. (Streeter Lecka / Getty Images)

    Imagine how a dad might feel in those same stands with his 70-pound fourth-grade son. (One of the more chilling images in the YouTube gallery of fan violence is two middle-aged women shepherding a small boy away from the melee that had broken out around them.)

    Thankfully, not every stadium becomes Thunderdome when an opposing fan steps foot in it. God bless Lambeau Field.

    My friend Dan attended the NFC Championship game in Green Bay in his Eli Manning jersey. Not only did he emerge unscathed, he received a grudging Midwestern respect for making the trek and for the gritty performance of his team.

    Check out this news report on how Giants fans were greeted in Green Bay. And not one woman implored to expose her breasts.

    Oh, that all NFL cities could be Green Bay.

    But the sad truth is that many NFL stadiums are about as family friendly as the strip clubs where the league's players so often get arrested. Goodell's fan conduct policy will be the first step to taking the violence out of the stands and parking lots and keeping it on the field where it belongs.

  2. #2
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    Re: NFL to crackdown on football hooligans

    my all time favorite memory was when i was at a steelers-browns game in cleveland in 2003, a steelers fan with a hard cast on his right hand beat the hail out of this browns fan...NFL games are non stop entertainment and i hope goodell doesn't change that (only joking of course)
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  3. #3
    LasVegasGuy
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    Re: NFL to crackdown on football hooligans

    Goodell needs to wake up and realize it's not the few bad apples bringing the league down it's the organization that has been cheating for 8 years that is destroying the integrity of the league. That we will push under the rug and make a stand somewhere else.

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    Re: NFL to crackdown on football hooligans

    What a bunch of crap...there are plenty of game day fights here in Green Bay.

  5. #5
    LasVegasGuy
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    Re: NFL to crackdown on football hooligans

    Quote Originally Posted by stlrz d
    What a bunch of crap...there are plenty of game day fights here in Green Bay.

    Players or fans?

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    Hall of Famer AngryAsian's Avatar
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    Re: NFL to crackdown on football hooligans

    Quote Originally Posted by stlrz d
    What a bunch of crap...there are plenty of game day fights here in Green Bay.


    Jax, has a ton of fights. The few times I went up there to see the Steelers play, it was horrible. There's a bunch of low-lifes in that town. Drunk, disorderly, brawling, puking.... that's just the female Jag fans.

  7. #7

    Re: NFL to crackdown on football hooligans

    If you want to end the violence inside the stadiums or in the parking lot, it is very simple. Each team needs to threaten to revoke the seat license for the offending patron. If the offending person is not a season ticket holder, then whomever owns the license for that particular ticket will be revoked. If the ticket was purchased on ticketmaster, then the purchaser of the tickets can not purchase anymore in the future.

    If I can't make a game, I always ensure that whomever uses my tickets will conduct themselves with humility. My theory is that it took me way too long to finally get my seats, I don't want some drunken idiot to ruin my livelihood.
    He who forgets, will be destined to remember.

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    Re: NFL to crackdown on football hooligans

    Quote Originally Posted by BigLebowski
    If you want to end the violence inside the stadiums or in the parking lot, it is very simple. Each team needs to threaten to revoke the seat license for the offending patron. If the offending person is not a season ticket holder, then whomever owns the license for that particular ticket will be revoked. If the ticket was purchased on ticketmaster, then the purchaser of the tickets can not purchase anymore in the future.

    If I can't make a game, I always ensure that whomever uses my tickets will conduct themselves with humility. My theory is that it took me way too long to finally get my seats, I don't want some drunken idiot to ruin my livelihood.
    And tickets to an NFL game should be thought of as a commodity.

    Good post Lebowski!!!

    Couldn't agree with you more. Being here in the crotch of football, Cleveland, I get to "interact" with several drunk moron Clown fans every time I'm in Steeler colors. That occurs, believe it or not, whether there is a game or not. The recent Penguins success is a prime example of that.

    There is more than enough truth to my theory that Clowns fan doesn't have a particular affinity toward the Clowns. They just believe that it is equally important to hate on the other team. In my book, that's f***ing wrong no matter what. I'm a Steelers fan, not a Clowns hater, so what do I care what their team does?

    You also have to recognize that these are alcohol related offenses and most hooliganism happens between fans who don't attend the games. What do you do with them? Local police need to understand that they must enforce laws equally regarding alcohol violations and any lawbreaking occurring as a result of alcohol consumption. That would require a professional neutrality that goes beyond any fandom they personally possess.

    Even though I am not an official in the employ of the Steelers, I feel that when I wear the colors I carry the responsibility of representing the team with dignity and class. I cheer strenuously for the team, but do my best to recognize the play of the opposing team and give them credit where credit is due, personal feeling aside. I wish more fans, especially Clowns fans, would do the same. They just don't and that's what makes things difficult in a place like Cleveland.

    I could go on and on about how bent the sports fan in Cleveland is on getting a major title for any of their teams. Some of the behavior here is disgusting when the sober fan lets loose. Add alcohol, and you have a potential powder keg.
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    Hall of Famer Djfan's Avatar
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    Re: NFL to crackdown on football hooligans

    Cool sig Stlrzd! I love the blues!
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    Re: NFL to crackdown on football hooligans

    Quote Originally Posted by LasVegasGuy
    Quote Originally Posted by stlrz d
    What a bunch of crap...there are plenty of game day fights here in Green Bay.

    Players or fans?
    Fans. Especially when the Bears and Vikings come to town.

    Quote Originally Posted by asiansteel
    Quote Originally Posted by stlrz d
    What a bunch of crap...there are plenty of game day fights here in Green Bay.


    Jax, has a ton of fights. The few times I went up there to see the Steelers play, it was horrible. There's a bunch of low-lifes in that town. Drunk, disorderly, brawling, puking.... that's just the female Jag fans.
    Sounds like Green Bay too. I think y'all would be shocked at the number of trucks in this town sporting the rebel flag and/or truck nuts. Not to mention all the NASCAR decals, snowmobile decals (Polaris, Arctic Cat, etc), Harley decals and so on.

    Yee haw!

    Quote Originally Posted by Djfan
    Cool sig Stlrzd! I love the blues!
    Give props to the yellow man for the artistic plan.

    I just gave him a list of some of my favorite guitar men. He did the rest. He's like a photoshopping Matthew Lesko...he does all the work, you just have to send the PM!

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