Can’t say you’ll get a crazy argument from me here.
For those who don’t already know, Anthony Rizzo made his weekly appearance with ESPN 1000 on Tuesday and he said pretty much what my headline says verbatim.
While I’m sure some guys play for the love of the game, I’d guess that less than 10 percent of these guys would play for free more than twice a year.
Division I college players have roughly 55 games a year, not including summer ball which can escalate to roughly 40. And I KNOW most guys are spent by the time they get to summer ball. most are just counting down the days until they can go home for two weeks until fall ball start back up.
Now you want to take away money from these guys? I just can’t fathom enough guys agreeing to take a pay cut, even if they’re making millions and will play less.
“For the love of the game,” not only failed as a movie, but doesn’t really work here.
But I don’t hate Rizzo’s idea. One of the reasons football has always done so well is fans get to see their team once a week. It becomes an event and doesn’t consume their life to the point where they’re bogged down with something, outside of news, every night.
Which is why Thursday Night Football typically doesn’t get good ratings — it’s just too much.
The idea isn’t terrible, but I’ve thought about this quite a bit before myself. There are a few holes.
First off, how many games does he want to play? He didn’t give a specific number in the interview, at least according to Jesse Rogers’s article. Are we talking 10? 20? Cut the season in half?
Two reasons I ask. One, obviously how does it effect how players are paid, which we already went over. Second, if you cut down on the number of games certain players on the roster become unnecessary.
If you drop 20 games on the season do you really need a fifth starter? And how many bullpen arms do you need? Hard to imagine the offense would be effected, but the rosters could shrink from 25 to 23 or even 20. Are players going to be alright with that?
Honestly, how often will you even need relievers anyways? If guys have an extended period of time off, they could afford to go long into games — if managers and GM’s feel like that’s a good idea.
I think in some ways it’s a great idea, no doubt, but there are significant holes in the proposal.
Maybe someone will come up with a good one soon, but until then, 162 games it is.