Strange fans – pink feather boas in Canada

Fans of the Winnipeg Blue Bombers cheer for their team against the Montreal Alouettes during first half CFL action in Winnipeg, October 22, 2011. REUTERS/Fred Greenslade (CANADA – Tags: SPORT FOOTBALL)

Yes – Canadian fans like to dress up like idiots as well. These guys are fans of the Winnipeg Blue Bombers, as if that’s not reason enough to make fun of them.

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5 questions with Brian Frederick of

While the NFL owners and players continue to battle in court about how to split the $9 billion pie, some fans are not sitting idly by waiting to find out what happens. Brian Frederick, the executive director of, is one of those who is literally fighting on behalf of the fans–the fans like you who continue to get shafted by greedy sports team owners and overpaid players. We had the chance to ask Brian a few questions recently about and some of the current issues affecting fans:

The Scores Report: First, if you can tell me briefly about how you started your organization and some of the things that you stand for?

Brian Frederick: Sports Fans Coalition was founded in 2009 by the chair of our board, David Goodfriend, a former Clinton White House staffer. He put together a great board, including a member of the Bush White House. I was brought on in August of 2010 to be the first full-time employee. We were founded to give sports fans a voice on public policy issues; to bring the voice of the fan to the halls of power. We are concerned about issues like media blackouts, stadium construction, ticket prices, work stoppages and the lack of a college football playoff.

TSR: I read that you were trying to earn a seat at the initial labor negotiations. Did anyone respond to you at all and if so, what did they say?

BF: After one of the mediation sessions in DC, DeMaurice Smith asked to speak with me and he and I walked back to his office and chatted. He said we had written a great letter and he was interested in some of our ideas. He saw no reason, for instance, that a new CBA couldn’t include language ending blackouts. I am still hopeful that he will try to include that in whatever the new CBA looks like, but I am not holding my breath. I never heard from Roger Goodell.

TSR: Now that the appeals hearing is set for June 3 and a ruling might not come down until a month later, do you think any games will be missed?

BF: It depends on the ruling (and further appeals). I’ve always felt that we are likely to lose some early games but not the whole season. That’s not to say that there’s not a chance the whole season will be lost, it just seems unlikely because this is just over how to divide revenue within a structure that works. The NFL doesn’t have the deeper problems that the NBA does, for instance. If the owners win their appeal, I think we’re looking at some lost games. If the players win, I think there’s a better chance for football in the fall.

TSR: Do you think the NFL has done enough damage to this point that will make fans boycott, at least to some degree?

BF: The NFL is certainly damaging its brand every day this dispute drags on. I don’t think it’s caused enough harm yet that fans will boycott. Only after games are missed will there even be a chance of enough fans uniting to take action. This is unfortunate, of course, because that is what the NFL and NFLPA are counting on — that fans won’t care until games are missed. But that attitude (like a game of chicken) is exactly what leads to missed games. There’s this sort of attitude among fans that it will get worked out — “they always work it out.” Well, they don’t always work it out. Sometimes there are games missed and even whole seasons.

TSR: When players and owners say how important the fan is, do you believe them? Why or why not?

BF: I believe that they believe the fans are important in the sense that they are important to their bottom line. They are interested in treating fans as loyal consumers and they don’t want to jeopardize that relationship. They want the fans to have an enjoyable experience and to pay as much money as they are able to in order to have that experience. They don’t mind that they lose fans who can’t afford to follow anymore. That’s troubling. Sport doesn’t have to be that way. At we’re trying to empower sports fans and fight for a different way of thinking about sports — one that places what’s great about sports (passion, camaraderie, fair competition, athleticism, etc.) ahead of huge profits.

For more information about Sports Fan Coalition and, please visit

Die-hard sports fans are unhealthy

sports fan

This breaking story comes from the Kansas City Star. I’m sure this will come as a surprise to all, but apparently dyed-in-the-wool sports fans have terrible eating and exercise habits.

Daniel Sweeney and Donna Quimby, professors at Arkansas Little Rock, conducted the study in which 515 people on campus responded to an e-mail survey.

The survey found that 26 percent of sports fans ate vegetables only one to three times a month, compared with 19.2 percent of non-sports fans, while 11.9 percent of sports fans have four or more drinks when they consume alcohol compared with 3.2 percent of non-sports fans. Additionally, 21 percent of fans almost always ate high-fat food compared with 13 percent of non-sports fans.

Sports fans had an average body-mass index of 27.4, while non sports fans were at 25.09. A BMI between 25-29.9 is considered overweight, while 30 or higher is considered obese.

“Knowing something is there is good, but it’s not enough to affect change. The next step is why is this happening? What is going on there?”

Why is this happening? I’ll tell you why. My opinion is that most “die-hard” sports fans typically run from their mid-twenties onward. This is because they’ve had a considerable amount of years to gain a proper knowledge about sports and have grown to truly love their favorite team. I find that, as these fans get older, they either get married or care so little about getting married that the idea of looking good can become insignificant. Let’s face it, if you can find a mate that is also a crazy sports fan, or can at least tolerate your addiction, snatch them up right away.

I also think the problem lies in both the number of sports and their scheduling. It’s rare these days to find a fan who only follows one sport. At any time of year, there are at least two college or professional leagues running. As fans become attached to their favorite teams, they may have more than one game to watch a day. This makes setting aside an hour or two for the gym after work nearly impossible. Obviously, it can be done. It’s all about discipline and setting a schedule for yourself that balances both an exercise and sports intake.

I suppose a step towards better living would be to eat a healthy meal while you’re watching sports. Still, I’ve never seen a buddy have a salad and a Diet Coke while a game is on. If you’re really serious about it, you could eat when you’re not in a sports setting, so as to avoid the temptation of unhealthy foods. But being a sports fan is all about the experience, which has proven to be more enjoyable than a regular job. So, what will a be? A nice beer, some chicken wings, and fries after the daily grind? Or a low-carb alternative and some lemon water?

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