Monday, February 27, 2006

Prewriting to Generate Ideas

Freewriting (Time: 20 Minutes)

I have been involved in soccer for as long as I can remember. In fact, my entire family has been involved in the sport in one way or another. Because of this, I have always felt a certain inclination to the sport; it has effects on me daily, as well as on my father, as he works with the Richmond Kickers Pro Soccer team. In many foreign countries, I imagine that most of the youth are brought up in a similar way; their parents are or were involved in soccer in some way, as are or were their siblings. Its an inherent quality, that almost all children experience and live from their earliest days. So why, in the US as opposed to anywhere else, is soccer not regarded as the number one sport. Instead, we as citizens are bombarded with media coverage of football, baseball, and basketball. We find ourselves struggling to catch one soccer game a week on TV, and even major sports sources like ESPN shy away from the sport. What I am going to attempt to discover in my research is the reasons, motives, and actions that are examined and used in relation to the exposure of soccer. I have discovered a few reasons for America’s initial denial of the sport of soccer, chiefly concerning the character of a stereotypical American. We as Americans tend to be loud, boastful, self-serving, and have a strong fear of outside cultures. These characteristics are the exact opposite of the morals of soccer as a sport. Soccer is the ultimate team game; 11 players working together for 90 minutes in order to allow no goals, and score only one or two. One mistake can cause downfall, one show of brilliance can be the difference in a win or a loss. These teammates grow together, win together, and lose together, but fight to make their hometown, team, or country proud. They play the game in order to orchestrate beautiful spots of play, where control and precision are the name of the game. Americans, as w hole, prefer high-scoring affairs, with little or no defense. Take, for example, a typical basketball game, where scores reach into the 100’s for each team. Scoring is excting, and just as we embrace sex, drugs, and rock and roll, we also find ourselves embraced the guilty pleasure of high-scoring automatically meaning better.

Prewriting to Organize Ideas


Action- The thing that has occurred was an enormous growth of the sport of soccer outside of the US, while the US began to embrace baseball as it’s pastime. Called the “World’s game,” soccer began to show its importance in European, South American, and African countries. However, the US rejected the sport as anything more than a fun activity for the youth. Coverage was limited, and still is today, as only very important matches and the World Cup are given true media coverage. We are beginning to see more acceptance among Americans, and only time will tell what is going to happen as far as the sports growth here in our country.

Motive- The motives for this lack of growth in the US are what I am going to base most of my essay on, as they will help me determine why this shift occurred. One of the more interesting reasons that I have found thus far is that when America was beginning to be settled, the colonists rejected many of the ways of their former home. This rejection included the rejection of soccer, as these new Americans wanted their children to be different from all of the immigrants who were coming in (and who happened to play soccer). From its British roots, soccer picked up steam in African and South American countries, as it was easy to just pick up and play (just needed one ball, some sticks for goals).

Method- This lack of desire to accept soccer as a sport by American’s was simply done, at the beginning, to be different. Americans wanted to reject foreign cultural aspects, one of which was soccer. Americans who tried to organize soccer leagues prior to the mid-1900s encountered several problems. First of all, the people who tried to organize them usually had little to no interest in soccer, other than from a business standpoint. Because of this lack of care, if the investors saw these leagues as counter-beneficial, they would simply remove their funding, and fold the league. While soccer began to gain support in Asian countries in the mid to late 1900’s, soccer still saw only small amounts of improvement at home. Not until the World Cup touched down on US soil, followed soon after by the formation of Major League Soccer, had the sport seen any real advances towards what has been reached in other parts of the world.

Actors- The people involved in this action is a very diverse group. It involves all soccer players, fans, coaches, and managers, as they all play a vital role in how soccer is viewed and accepted around the world. Although my controversy focuses on the lack of advancement for support in the US, I can not simply look at the people in the US to fully grasp my controversy. I need to understand what goes on in other countries, from youth to professional, in order to understand what he have not achieved and what we can do to help our cause. Obviously, the purpose of my paper it to find out why the sport is opposed by the US as a community, and why it is so accepted in other places of the world.

Setting- This, like my set of actors, is also a very diverse group. Because of the nature of my community, there are several settings that I will be examining. I will be looking at the nature of soccer in the US, from where the games are played, to the lack of major city support, and in turn, lack of total support. I will also be looking at all of the other countries that embrace the sport, and asking myself what they have done to help the sport and, in turn, what we have not done. As far as time, I will be looking at soccer from its very roots; when it began, to when it started to thrive, to its movement into the US, and into its present state.


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