After reading many of the blogs, and more importantly the comments after them here at Fannation, I feel that I have to point something out. We all know that as a blanket statement, the sporting world is "swimming in money". There is a reason that the sporting world in general and athletes in particular make so much money. It has been true throughout the ages, dating back to before the days of the gladiator, and I'm not talking about the movie. Even back into Biblical times, the athlete--the champion--has been revered, praised, emulated. Samson was the biggest and strongest man around, and he enjoyed a fame that resounded through the land. And even he hit a low point in his carreer, making bad decisions, just like our famous athletes today. Goliath, though he was the enemy, found his way into the annals of history because of his daunting abilities and his freakish size. And David himself after besting the giant, was crowned king of the Israelites. Each and every one of them in the olden days was coddled and pampered, compared to the alternative in a harsh world, where the average person was either a slave or indentured as a servant, or simply toiled their life away in the hopes of feeding themselves and their families every day. And very often, athletes found favor with kings and queens, living a life of comparable luxury.
What makes this happen? Why is this true? Because sports and accomplished athletes are entertainment for the masses. You may break it down into varying degrees of fanaticism, but that's fodder for another blog. They are entertainment for us no less than movie or TV stars.
The incredible amounts of money saturating the sporting world comes from us, the fans. The rich team owners wouldn't have money to dump into players and facilities if there were no fan base. I have heard people, most often women, complain of sexism and bias when speaking of the disparity of player salaries between the NBA and the WBNA. Now granted, there very well may be sexism in the WNBA, but it has nothing to do with their pay scale. Women athletes don't make as much as men athletes because the draw, the interest, the fan base is nowhere near the size of men's sports. I listened to my dental hygienist complain about athletes making millions playing a game, while the dentist himself earned far less after eight to ten years of intensive schooling. Yeah, well, I don't think that dentists and doctors have much of a following. I've never seen a doctor's logo on a mass-produced white frock, extolling his superiority as an arthroscopic genius.
If one were to look closer at sports as an entertainment media, one will understand better the differences in popularity, media attention, differences in all the sports' coverages, saturation in all societies, and above all, the money. Sports has its rightful place in not only American society, but probably all societies the world over. They are an inevitable result of people being people.
So go on out and cheer for your team! Urge your favorite center to slam the ball while posterizing the hated defender! Heckle the opposition's quarterback! And don't forget to purchase the jerseys, the bumper stickers, and the coffee mug with the Seahawks logo. Oops, I mean your team's logo. It's all driving the entertainment that we love so much.