Thursday, April 18, 2002

FOOTBALL, AMERICA'S GAME WATCH: Condoleeza Rice would love to be NFL commissioner someday:

"That's absolutely right," she said, "though not immediately and not before Paul Tagliabue is ready to step down. I want to say that for the record.

"I think it would be a very interesting job because I actually think football, with all due respect to baseball, is a kind of national pastime that brings people together across social lines, across racial lines. And I think it's an important American institution."

Gosh. She, like Paglia, loves the tactics of the game:

Most of Rice's time in recent days has been spent monitoring the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. But she still finds a few moments to keep up with preparations for the N.F.L. draft, which begins Saturday at Madison Square Garden. No matter where she is Saturday and no matter what she is doing, Rice expects to find out which players are going where.

Rice's passion for football stems from her study of the history of warfare. While acknowledging the obvious differences, Rice said she was attracted to two fundamental similarities between football and warfare: the use of strategy and the goal of taking territory.

"I really consider myself a student of the game," she said. "I find the strategy and tactics absolutely fascinating. I find the evolution of the game really interesting. Again, as it relates to military history. Military history has swung back and forth between advantage to the offense and advantage to the defense. When the offense has the advantage, then a new technology will come along that will temporarily give the defense the advantage and vice versa. Football has that kind of pattern, too."

That article also reveals Condi was once an aspiring figure skater. Yeah, I can picture that. Anyway, hopefully she can use the vice presidency to push herself into a job with actual cultural cache. SportsByBrooks, which appears to be a fine sports blog, found via Diana Hsieh.

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