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June 12, 2021

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Premier League’s pandemic season: Robbed goal celebrations, bags of PPE, fears for football’s future

ESPN
The 2020-21 Premier League season was unlike any other. With the coronavirus pandemic forcing the 2019-20 season to conclude in late July, teams had a little over six weeks to reboot, reset and regroup. From there, the grueling calendar took hold, with a compressed league schedule and cup competitions squeezed......

Crowning a 2021 champion in college football’s 64-team playoff

ESPN
Part of the magic of the NCAA tournament is the little guy knocking off the big guy, especially in the early rounds and against all odds. But when you get to this point, talent usually wins out. We’re down to 16 teams in ESPN’s fictional NCAA football tournament. Here’s how......

‘Pep is football’s Heston Blumenthal’

BBC
David Moyes has likened Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola to celebrity chef Heston Blumenthal for his tactical innovations that defy convention. Blumenthal is famous for coming up with unusual recipes such as bacon and egg flavoured ice-cream and snail porridge, which work despite the ingredients. West Ham boss Moyes, aiming......

College football’s most intriguing newcomer for each Way-Too-Early Top 25 team

ESPN
7:00 AM ET ESPN staff Between recruits, transfers and new coaches, even the best teams in college football look different year to year. From defending champ Alabama breaking in a new offensive coordinator to Ohio State’s ready-to-contribute true freshmen, these are the most intriguing newcomers for each of the Way-Too-Early......

College football’s February 2021 national signing day tracker

ESPN
College football’s February national signing day is here. Despite the NCAA enacting a dead period amid the COVID-19 pandemic since last March, meaning recruits haven’t been able to take official visits, recruiting has gone on as normal. The early signing period in December came and went, and now the regular......

Is football’s racism battle being lost?

BBC
Manchester United and Sheffield United players kneeling before their recent Premier League game at Old Trafford – Manchester United pair Axel Tuanzebe and Antony Martial received racist abuse following the match When it comes to online racist abuse, football appears to have had enough. Again. Last week’s series of incidents......

College football’s way-too-early 2021 All-America team

ESPN
After navigating the challenges of the 2020 college football season, is there anybody not eager to look ahead a little bit? We bid adieu to stars such as DeVonta Smith, Trevor Lawrence, Justin Fields and Daviyon Nixon, but there’s a whole new batch of players waiting to star on college......

‘Hook ’em, you don’t Gig ’em’: Mack Brown recalls one of college football’s most cordial rivalries

ESPN
Not long after Mack Brown was hired at the University of Texas, he was saved from the first controversy of his young Longhorns career by the unlikeliest of allies. In 1998, Brown and longtime Texas A&M coach R.C. Slocum were guests at a public event in San Antonio along with......

From Lane to Dabo to Tom Herman’s favorite app: College football’s quotes of the year

ESPN
It began with Joe Burrow, Coach O and an unprecedented LSU run that made college football history, and 2020 ended on an even more unprecedented historical note. In between, a global pandemic threatened the entire sport and exposed rifts and power imbalances across its landscape. This was a year of......

Teal turf, mullets and Coastal Carolina’s long road to becoming college football’s must-watch team

ESPN
Editor’s note: This story was published on Oct. 29, when Coastal Carolina was 5-0. The 11-0 Chanticleers face Liberty in the FBC Mortgage Cure Bowl on Saturday, Dec. 26, at 7:30 p.m. ET on ESPN and the ESPN App. It was Tuesday, July 30, 2002, when Coastal Carolina University dignitaries......

Bracketology isn’t perfect, but it beats college football’s system every time

ESPN
A version of this column first appeared in January, 2001. Some of the names have been changed to protect the guilty. Congratulations to Alabama, Clemson, Ohio State and Notre Dame. They are the unsurprising “final four” of college football. We won’t use the initial caps Final Four until the powers......

Proof that Mac Jones is college football’s most interesting man

ESPN
HE WAS BURIED on the Alabama depth chart, way down deep where the sun never reached, so Mac Jones‘ most urgent reason for existing in this moment was to make Nick Saban’s defense better, more fearsome, the ilk of defense that wins championships five times in nine seasons. Jones knew......

Heisman Watch: Can a wide receiver take home college football’s top award?

ESPN
Welcome back to our weekly Heisman Watch for the 2020 college football season. Throughout the season, ESPN.com writers will vote on their top Heisman Trophy candidates. To get the final rankings, we use the following methodology: 13 voters, five votes each. Points system: five points for first-place votes, four points......

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