Biya – Ahidjo’s Rift – Harbinger of the Failed Coup in 1984

Biya – Ahidjo’s Rift – Harbinger of the Failed Coup in 1984

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He had an educationally sound background and having worked with him for long prompted his predecessor to believe in him and handed over power to him serenely. Little did he know that he was dealing with a Serrano. As some one Amadou Ahidjo trusted, he was taken aback when he soon realized that his successor was not living up to the tenets of the then ruling party. He was fast enough to read between the lines and the chameleon hit a sore point by failing to implement the policies of the then Cameroon National Union (CNU). This was really substantiation that he was a cootie on the body of his predecessor or a cog in the wheel.

The inability of Amadou Ahidjo to weather the storm precipitated him to sense danger and received Biya poorly when he visited Ngoundere in 1983. He soon realized that he was trying to back the wrong horse and thus had an Argus-eye. He then advocated for his teammates and Ministers from the North to resign from the regime of Biya which he responded by reshuffling the cabinet throwing them out. A tall order of events ranging from the failed attempts to eliminate Biya to the coup of 1984 took place for he was really a thorn in his flesh.

Between March and August 1983 there were futile attempts alleged to be masterminded by Amadou Ahidjo to eliminate Biya. This was possible because he had some hands on his farms. First was the attempt to exterminate Biya during the 20th May celebration in Yaounde where he escaped death at the skin of the teeth. Biya sensed danger too and boycotted a political bureau meeting on the 19th of June the same year thus still escaping death at a close shave. By hair’s breadth he fled death again during the military ceremony for graduating officers in the Military Academy ( EMIA) and on August 7th 1983 in a football match pitting Canon Yaounde and Union Douala in Cameroon Football cup Final another endeavor was made to do away with Biya after which he came to grips with himself.Following these series of stabs to eliminate Biya, he became rather cautious and with the help of his collaborators, he was always being hinted for assassination attempts. He also tightened the security around him and the poor planning of the assassination plots by his adversaries gave him an edge to be wise.

The immediate causes of the dark April 6th 1984 coup could be traced to the fact that the chairman of the CNU and the newly appointed president had conflicting ideas just to support the tension that was already looming between Ahidjo and Biya. The North -South cleavage became rather prominent as top ranking Military officers from the north were removed during the cabinet shake up and Biya quickly transferred the Unit of the Republican guard. By 3.05 pm on the 6th of April 1984,captain Awal Abassi and colonel Ibrahim Saleh together with some mutineers attacked the presidency, the Military Head quarters and the National radio station which was switched off by a journalist and the message about the coup was circulating only in Yaounde.Though the airport was surrounded by the insurgents as early as 7.00am, it was later on recaptured by the forces loyal to Biya by the 11th Infantry battalion from Ebolowa under ColonelTitus Ebogo with reinforcement by air forces troops from Koutaba.

To borrow a leaf from neighboring Nigeria where a series of successful coups have been carried out, one can say that the coup plotters did not make use of surprise which is indispensable in a military take over. The air force was not put out of action that prompted the recapture of the airport.Failure to completely neutralize top military officers loyal to Biya and the fact that the strategic sites already seized by the rebels were not well protected eased recapturing. Above all, the leader of the mutineers in a communiqué over the radio spoke with fear over the radio that necessitated people to doubt the story.

Whether the coup was successful or not, the damages were enormous. The coup plotters were condemned to death while others were instantly executed.. About 235 gendarmes died and about 1053 rebels captured. Some top ranking ministers were dismissed from their posts by Biya and the Republican guard was dissolved and placed under the Delegation of National Gendarmerie. The presidency was then guarded by Regiment of the Armed forces Headquarters.

If an antecedent can hand over power peacefully to a successor he trusted even if he failed him after, why can the descendant not too hand over to someone else? Coups and post election violence must not be a means to a change in a regime for those who appreciate the sweetness of honey must have tasted something bitter. A good actor knows when to leave the stage except he wants to be a cyborg.

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PR Crisis Management – Tell It All, Tell It Fast And Tell The Truth

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I turned on the television news recently to learn that one of our top football teams may have lost an important match because of illness, the story being brought to us by a reporter stationed outside the hotel where the players enjoyed lunch prior to the game.

In the car, this was the lead story on the radio news with the story read by a reporter, again said to be outside the hotel. He confirmed that the Police had collected samples from the restaurant to pass onto the health authorities.

Guess what? The story was also the lead in the tabloid newspapers sat on my desk when I reached the office. Photographs of the hotel in question usually supported the story.

As a public relations professional, I reflected on what the hotel’s PR people are going through this morning. This is a prestigious hotel group with a well-crafted brand image of quality at the premium end of the market. Here they are, in the spotlight for all the wrong sort of reasons!

They will surely have a documented Crisis Management Plan or, in softer terms, a PR Communications Plan. But it is not only global companies who need to devise a plan in advance. Being in business, or even running a not-for-profit organisation, exposes everyone to the risk of a PR crisis.

No organisation is very far from crises and their resulting media attention. Their reputation can be washed away or seriously damaged in an instant. A crisis is any situation that threatens the integrity or reputation of your company, usually brought on by adverse or negative media attention.

These situations can be any kind of legal dispute, theft, accident, fire, flood or manmade disaster that could be attributed to your company. It can also be a situation where in the eyes of the media or general public your company did not react to one of the above situations in the appropriate manner. This definition is not all encompassing but rather is designed to give you an idea for the types of situations where you may need to follow this plan.

Crisis management is a complex subject, but here are five tips to get you started. And, start, you must.

1. Don’t wait. Many organisations only get their crisis plans underway once a disaster has struck. Instead, brainstorm possible scenarios or types of disasters that could happen, and start planning for them. In fact, I have found this to be a positive process as bringing together key executives to share ideas and examine scenarios often brings out a range of issues that they can take forward.

2. Realise that crises take a wide range of shapes. As I say, this can be anything from the hotel’s crisis to a legal dispute getting out of hand to customer dissatisfaction aired on the Internet. I even recall a weekend phone call from a Scout leader whose campsite had been washed away in storms with some children being injured; the media were on the telephone badgering her for the story! They will all require slightly different responses. Brainstorm and prepare for as many as you can imagine.

3. Develop a PR communications plan. A barrage of media attention may swamp you within minutes of the news breaking. Also, think about how you will get information out to staff, supporters & investors, and customers – yes, remember to get your side of the story out to customers as soon as you can. Internal communication is as important as communication to the general public.

A physical plan has to do with getting everyone out of the building in case of an earthquake. A communications plan involves identifying a spokesperson, developing press releases, setting up a media hotline, and finding a place where you can have a press conference.

4. Be prepared to speak to the media and to your constituents. Even if you can’t say much because your lawyer is concerned about liability, plan to say what you can as soon as you can. Be concerned, show concern, speak concern, and always tell the truth. That doesn’t mean you have to tell everything all at once, but never, never lie.

5. Provide media training for senior management. Do this before a disaster strikes. Make it a regular part of board and senior employee training. Media training needn’t cost a lot if you have someone on your board working in public relations or someone who is a member of the media. The key is to do it regularly so that new people are always trained and others don’t grow stale.

Don’t delay your crisis planning. Don’t ruin your hard-won reputation by handling difficult situations badly! The directors and PR team of that hotel this morning went to bed last evening little knowing the blast of unwelcome publicity that was facing them this morning. Hopefully, their PR Communications Plan will be a trusted aide today!

Suggested reading

1. “Crisis in Organizations: Managing and Communicating in the Heat of Crisis,” by Laurence Barton.

2. “You’d Better Have a Hose if You Want to Put Out the Fire: The Complete Guide to Crisis and Risk Communications,” by Rene A. Henry.

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The Story of Dick Leftridge – A Forgotten Pioneer Or Simply Ignored

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Quick by a show of hands how many of you ever heard of Dick Leftridge before today? I have to confess I too never heard of Mr. Leftridge until recently, when I was contacted by his son Jack Richard Leftridge Jr. The younger namesake is on a quest to have his father’s name and accomplishments remembered and properly acknowledged in the history books. The timing of this movement could not have come at a better time in lieu of the highly anticipated release of the Disney movie “The Express” due to open in theaters. The Express is based on the life of the late Syracuse great Ernie Davis who was the first African-American football player to win the Heisman (1961).

Like Mr. Davis all accounts point to the fact that Dick Leftridge was a pioneer in his own right, according to my research and a synopsis received from his son, Dick Leftridge was the first African-American to receive a football scholarship to play for a major college in the south, after he signed with West Virginia University in 1962, which at the time played in the Southern conference, below the Mason Dixon line. The recruitment and signing of Dick Leftridge accompanied by the subsequent signing of another black player Roger Alford represented a shift in the culture at the university. According to Richard Leftridge Jr., WVU was not his father’s first choice despite being a hometown product (Hinton, WV), he wanted to attend Ohio State to play for the legendary Woody Hayes; however the elder Leftridge bowed to the pressure he received from boosters to local politicians all of whom wanted him to stay home and play at WVU. According to the document even the local chapter of the NAACP encouraged Leftridge to attend the local university and be the one who broke the color barrier at WVU. Dick Leftridge played for WVU from 1963-1965 during that time he put up some impressive stats he was the leading ground gainer and scorer each of his three years at WVU, in 1965 he was named Amateur Athlete of the year by the West Virginia Sports writer Association. Dick Leftridge was the first African-American to play for the south team in the North-South Shrine game in 1965, he was also the first African-American named to the University of Pittsburgh All-Opponent team, and Dick Leftridge was also the first African-American voted to the second teams all south conference.

A few of you older Pittsburgh Steelers fans may remember Dick Leftridge as the team’s first round pick in 1966 he was chosen third overall that year, he was also a fourth round selection of the AFL’s Miami Dolphins that same year. Unfortunately Dick Leftridge only played one unspectacular season for the Steelers and many fans and media personnel labeled him a bust. This is where the story gets interesting; there are varied accounts as to why an athlete with so much promise lasted only one season in the NFL? Depending on whose version you believe some say Dick Leftridge, simply didn’t have the desire and discipline to make it, there are stories that say he simply “ate” his way out of the league by putting on too much weight to be effective as an elite running back, according to one article on Mr. Leftridge written in the Hinton Daily News (7/19/66), the Steelers had a weight clause put in his contract, the fine print read that every pound over 230 he brought to camp would carry a $50 fine, however in an interview with a reporter of the Charleston Daily News (9/26/85) Mr.Leftridge gave a different account of the events, he is quoted as saying the “Steelers put in the papers that I weighed 300 pounds when I reported. Everybody believed that and they still do. I admit I was lazy sometimes, but I wasn’t fat. I weighed 242 pounds when I reported; Hell all I know is how to play football. That’s all I’ve ever done. I was just a poor boy from Hinton (WV). How could people think I’d throw away a chance to make a million dollars? I’d never turn my back on that”.

Controversy seemed to follow Leftridge from WVU through his short pro career he was dismissed from school in the middle of the semester of his senior year a few days after he played his last collegiate game and his eligibility was done, in 1976 he would return to school to complete his degree. The younger Leftridge is also quick to point out that his dad was no saint; he wrestled with his own demons once his football career finally ended. He shared details of his father’s checkered past this included time spent in Detroit working in the automotive industry, and making questionable decisions to get involved in the drug game as a dealer both in Detroit and upon his return to his hometown, as a result of being on the wrong side of the law, Mr. Leftridge was sentenced to a five year stint in federal prison (1987). According to his son while the elder Leftridge sat in prison there were a number of alleged verbal, mental and physical harassment of the family on the streets and places of employment.

He also shared stories of his frustration in getting his dad’s story told and published. “I’ve contacted a lot of people, especially the African-American celebrities I see and hear in the media and received little to no interest, I’m not sure if the story is too controversial or what? He’s also faced an uphill battle in getting WVU to properly acknowledge his father’s achievements and historic significance for the Mountaineers. According to Richard JR. the school didn’t really acknowledge his accomplishments until his death and even then the school just published a short blurb, to this day he still has not been inducted into their Hall of Fame. Now the critics will argue that being inducted should not be based on race as a criteria for selection, and you should be judged strictly on athletic achievements , on the flip side supporters can point out his stats and some of his awards (mentioned earlier) and in this case his being the first African-American player at WVU, during a time of tumultuous unrest (Civil Rights Era) in this country’s history, should be taken into consideration alongside his on field performance, he was and still is the schools highest ever NFL draft pick. Does Dick Leftridge deserve to be inducted in the WVU Hall of fame? I’ll let you decide. In my humble opinion I think the story of Dick Leftridge is one of intrigue, mystique and historical importance and one that needs further exploration, if any of you would like to assist the younger Leftridge on his journey to promote his dads story (he can be reached at jrljr63@yahoo.com), he would be very gracious, he is not seeking fame and fortune from this story, just a chance to share the legacy of a forgotten Pioneer.

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A Story From The Stands – What Have Former Nebraska Football Players Learn From The Game – Smith

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THE GO-TO GUY

The new coach at Colorado told the talented blue-chipper from Thornton not to leave his native state and play for Nebraska. "You will not get to play, Bill McCartney told me," said Rod Smith, "but I was going to Nebraska because they kept their word to me."

The talented all-around player who returned twelve punts for touchdowns in high school, packed his stuff into a pickup and a trailer and he and his buddy Marc Munford headed for Lincoln. "The Colorado papers called us turncoats."

This was not Smith's first trip to Lincoln. "I attended a football camp at Nebraska when I was a high school junior," he explained. One of his buddies was Doug Fiala, a nephew of Husker linebacker Adrian Fiala. "Adrian came out to watch Doug and noticed me, too. He wanted Doug to come out to Lincoln for the football camp and asked me to come along."

Smith did and put on a show. One of the guys watching was Coach Tom Osborne. "He called me into his office and told me there would be a scholarship for me at Nebraska when I graduated," Smith said.

But his senior year in high school brought disaster instead of more stardom. "I had a knee injury and had to have surgery," he explained. Smith was out for the season but not out of the minds of the Nebraska coaching staff.

Nebraska coaches called often to find out how he was getting along and reassured him that the scholarship was his if he wanted it.

"I took my Colorado visit when the Buffs played Nebraska and went over to the Nebraska side so the doctors and trainers could check out my progress," he said as he laughed. "Even with the injury, Nebraska honored their promise and that was important."

The young Huskers-to-be arrived in mid summer. "Marc and I rented a house without air conditioning and had to sleep on the porch because of the humidity and heat. We could not believe it." He could not believe the reception he got when he walked into the weight facility the first time either.

"A guy walked up and asked if I was new and needed someone to work out with," Smith explained. "After we worked out, he asked if I wanted to catch some passes so we went out on the field for a while." The guy was Turner Gill and the year was 1983.

McCartney was wrong. Even with the triplets ruling college football, young Smith saw some varsity action as a freshman. He was groomed as a wide receiver but was soon put back for punt returns. He led the nation in punt returns in 1986. During Nebraska's first game under the lights on October 6, 1984 against Oklahoma State, Smith returned a punt for 67 yards and a touchdown. From that point on, Husker fans slid up on their seats when Smith went back for a punt.

His first touchdown pass did not happen, however. "Coach Osborne gave me this look when we broke the huddle so I knew it was going to be me. "I was all alone and Travis Turner thread a perfect spiral.

Lesson learned, catch first, run next. He also learned Nebraska coaches could be forgiving. Instead of a seat on the bench, he soon became one of Steve Taylor's top go-to guys.

Things were looking great and this goal-driven guy was well on his way to reaching his big dream. "I set a goal to play pro football when I was eight years old," he said. There was a good chance his Nebraska performance would allow him to do just that. Then Oklahoma came to town.

"I was back for the opening kickoff and got caught up in the excitement so much that my knee just started to shake," he recalled. The kick sailed over his head for a touchback.

Maybe that shaking knee was an ominous sign. Smith got whacked later in the game. A week later in Boulder, he could not walk. He had a broken leg and his Nebraska playing days were over.

That did not stop Smith from trying pro football through the free agent route. He got to play for the Kansas City Chiefs and the Oakland Raiders. But his days in football were numbered. "After five surgeries, a helpful of screw, and a plate in my leg and my explosion was gone."

Smith decided to move to the Phoenix area and start a business. "I remember how warm and nice it was there when we played in the Fiesta Bowl against Michigan." He started a company that conducts football camps for young boys.

"We try to teach leadership more than football skills and techniques. We try to give the kids positive reinforcement and get the kids to believe in themselves. That's half the battle," Smith explained. The camp includes four lectures a day that also deal with drug, alcohol, and violence problems.

His approach is approach works. Smith came back to Lincoln for the 2001 Oklahoma game. You can be sure he smiled when he watched one of his graduates play. "Eric Crouch attended our camp when he was in the eighth grade and Mike Brown attended when he was in the ninth."

"I guess I could have made a lot more money selling cars or something," Smith said, "but there has always been something a little bigger out there for me.

That's good news for dads and moms with boys who need a positive focus and a little push to reach their big dreams. They can count on Rod Smith to help. He is still the go-to guy.

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Demand of Sports and Games Apps in Modern World

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Stuck in a traffic jam or getting bored in the office, mobile phones can come to our rescue. Mobile games have been one of the best additions to our lives. Today mobile game development is a multibillion-dollar industry. Game developers crack their brains to bring us newer apps with improved experience and features. Since the days of the snake games, mobile apps have come a long way. With improved handset features and processing capabilities, they are giving PC games a run for their money. Sports and games apps have become the fashion of the modern world.

The world of mobiles is changing a lot. Once regarded as a tool for interaction now has turned in to a massive body with a wide range of application ranging from business to movies and entertainment.Mobile games apps has changed the way people opinion towards games both on a professional as well as on a personal front. Now people are playing games like never before. With the help of apps not only we can play the latest version of the game we can also keep an eye on the latest happenings in the sporting world. We can check the scores and sometimes watch the sports match live on our mobile phone. Considering the huge popularity of mobile games, all the mobile manufacturers are giving better functionality to their devices to make their phones compatible with different types of games available in the gaming sector. Sports and games apps have changed the whole structure of the modern world mobile applications.

There is a tremendous demand of online sports and games apps among people of all age groups. So, even a business with limited budget is now stepping into the world of games online. It has become an instant hit among all types of business sectors.

The businesses are using specific themes and there are various categories of Smartphone games available such as sports, action, adventure, racing, table-top, puzzle, hidden-object, educational and simulation games. Moreover, there are multi-player games introduced in the industry that allows users to play with their social circle even from their mobiles. The aim is to attract the attention of users and engage them to become their regular visitors or customers.

Some of the Android apps which have been very popular among the masses have been

a) Sporting News Pro Football

b) CBS Sports Pro Football

c) NBA Game Time Lite 2009-10

d) F1 LIVE RACING

e) ESPN Score Center

f) Sports Radio Droid

So, since the preference of the people keeps on changing the recent boom in mobile gaming sector just seems to be the perfect medicine for the live full of stress and tension. Seeing all these things one thing is for sure that the market is going to be flooded with the latest apps and it will provide a very nice option for the consumers to choose according to their need and demand.

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Athletics: It’s More Than Just A Game

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If someone were to analyze a football, basketball, or softball game, they may be impressed with an athletic play or cheer on a particular team. Ultimately, they would come to the conclusion that the point is to win the game. Still, win or lose, it is just a game. Although winning is the goal all athletes want to reach, athletics is much more than just a game. Athletics, especially at the collegiate level, is a laboratory for the growth of future A-player employees. An A-player is a top-level employee who is a great leader, role model, and achieves success. Hiring one A-player will change a business dramatically and with proper tactics to retain valued employees, A-players will attract more high quality workers.

According to the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) the percentage of athletes who continue their athletic careers professionally is minuscule. 1.6% of all NCAA football players will play in the NFL, 0.9% of all women’s basketball players get the opportunity to play in the WNBA, and 1.4% of men soccer players continue their college career at the professional level. In the 2013-2014 academic year, 472,625 athletes participated in 23 NCAA sports across the country. Unfortunately, the possibility of playing professionally are very slim and many talented athletes must move on from athletics and enter the workplace after graduating from college.

The good news for many businesses is that athletes are raised to be excellent employees. I believe a businessman should hire an athlete as his next employee because:

1. Athletes are achievement oriented

2. Athletes are resilient

3. Athletes are strong communicators

4. Athletes are team oriented

5. Athletes are excellent with time management

Most athletes have a burning desire to be competitive. An athlete not only competes against an opponent, but they also fight for a position on the team with other teammates. Collegiate athletics is a business and each athlete is expected to produce or playing time and/or spot on the team can be in jeopardy. Achievement oriented individuals refuse to be complacent and tend to never be satisfied. It is important to continually give athletes goals to strive for in the workplace. Competing is fun for them and a business will benefit immensely from an athlete’s competitiveness.

Athletics promote resiliency and overcoming adversity in order to become successful. Overcoming adversities arise in different forms throughout an athletic career. Athletes are expected to cope with injuries, adjust to uncontrollables like an umpire’s strike zone and compete to the conclusion of a game even if it feels like a victory is out of reach. Those who are resilient achieve greatness. For example, in 2004, the Boston Red Sox were down three games to the Yankees for the American League Championship Series. It would have been easy to throw in the towel but the Boston Red Sox refused to give up and the baseball team showed their resilience by winning four games straight and then onto win the World Series. Athletes refuse to let the uncontrollables bring them down; they will fight, scratch, and claw to reach their goals. An employee with this mentality will be an impactful member of the business and will contribute to creating a culture of success.

Especially in a team sport, an athlete is required to have strong communication skills. On the field, their job is to communicate with teammates in order to perform plays and encourage positive actions through supportive cheering, thus creating a unified atmosphere. Communication is not limited to verbal messages but is any information that is exchanged from one person to another. Successful athletes are coachable and communicate consistently with their coaches and team members. Coachability is critical because without buy-in from both the coaching staff and teammates, communication becomes fragile or broken causing indecisiveness, lack of trust, and a lack of confidence. As a manager, you want your employees to whole-heartedly trust the process, be open to constructive criticism, and communicate through behavior, feedback, and allowing oneself to be coachable. Because an athlete is achievement oriented and competitive, they tend to be one step ahead of non-athletes and will comply for the success of the business.

The benefit of being part of a team is probably the biggest attribute an athlete can bring to the workplace. Being team oriented encourages selflessness, consideration of others’ culture and emotions, and represents something much larger than one individual. Athletes work well with others and realize that their actions are a direct reflection of the team and organization. Issues always arise in a group, but when you are around the same people more than you spend time with family, you learn to manage and communicate with others as you strive for a common goal.

Lastly, a college athlete would be a great asset to a business because of their experience managing time wisely. The NCAA mandates all athletes enroll in at least twelve credit hours and maintain a 2.0 or higher grade point average. Athletes are also required to have a certain percentage towards their degree completed each year in order to participate in their sport. Depending on the Division (I, II, or III) and the university, an athlete is also expected to excel in a strength and conditioning program as well as attend practice. Juggling academics, practice, and strength and conditioning is a task most freshman struggle with their first year, but by the end of an athlete’s career, they become a master of time management. The ability to manage time relieves stress and prevents being overwhelmed as well as reduces drop-offs in performance.

In conclusion, a former student-athlete is an excellent candidate for a business’ next A-player. It may look different while they are competing in their sport, but college athletes make an impact on and off the field. Athletics build character and the sport will push a player’s beyond their perceived limitations. Athletes are always given a choice and those who persevere through a grueling yet rewarding four-year career become better people, better athletes, and have the tools to be contributing members of society. Enterprise Rent-A-Car is the most well known supporter in the hiring of college athletes. In April 2012, they signed a partnership with Career Athletes LLC to broaden recruitment of former student-athletes. Other companies associated with Career Athletes LLC include Urban Teacher Center, Northwestern Mutual, Stryker, and Federated Insurance.

References:

Brown, Lisa. “Enterprise Signs National Partnership to Hire Student Athletes”. St. Louis Post-Dispatch. 25 April 2012. Web. 20 November 2015. http://www.stltoday.com/business/local/enterprise-signs-national-partnership-to-hire-student-athletes/article_6f6babf8-8ee6-11e1-9e0a-0019bb30f31a.html

“Estimated probability of competing in professional athletics”. NCAA Research. 14 April 2015. Web. 12 November 2015.

http://www.ncaa.org/about/resources/research/estimated-probability-competing-professional-athletics

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The Differences Between Speed and Quickness

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Many people confuse speed and quickness, but these are two totally different things. It’s possible to have one without the other, but ideally you’d like to have both.

Quickness is about reacting quickly, changing directions, and moving over a short distance.

Speed, on the other hand, revolves more around strength and power, and deals only with covering a lot of ground quickly in a straight line.

Both speed and quickness require acceleration. And to accelerate quickly requires strong muscles. Both are about explosion, blasting out from your starting position to reach your goal.

However, the similarities end there. When you think of speed, think of a 100 meter sprinter. The only objective is to get from point A to point B in the shortest amount of time possible, and everyone knows the shortest distance between point A and point B is a straight line. So speed is all about moving quickly in a straight line. It’s linear, in other words. Two things matter most for speed: 1) the ability to explode and drive yourself forward, which comes from strong muscles, and 2) proper form and technique, which makes sure your motions are efficient and that you’re not wasting energy.

Quickness, on the other hand, is not about moving quickly in a straight line. It’s about being able to move quickly in any direction. In other words, it’s multi-directional instead of linear. Quickness also entails agility and reaction time. You want your body to respond quickly to what you see on the field or the court.

When thinking about quickness, think of an NFL defensive back. The wide receiver knows exactly where he wants to go, but the DB doesn’t. He has to simply react to what the wide receiver does. So reaction time and agility are key to quickness.

To become faster in terms of speed, you can keep the focus on the two things mentioned above: 1) muscle strength and 2) proper form. Going to the weight room regularly and practicing proper form in practice can help you build speed.

To become faster in terms of quickness, going to the weight room a lot won’t necessarily help. Instead of focusing on your big muscles, quickness requires strength in the small muscles and tendons. Quickness drills and whole-body exercises are the best ways to improve quickness, as they improve your reaction time and condition your body to respond in a certain way.

In summary, speed and quickness are two totally different things, and different methods are required to improve in each area. The good news is that it is possible to improve both your speed and your quickness. You just need to approach each differently and make sure you’re addressing the areas that will make you most successful.

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Learn La Liga Rules in Regards to Transfer, Promotion, Relegation & Non-EU Players

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La Liga refers to the first division Spanish League. The top professional football league in Spain is officially called as Liga BBVA for the reason of sponsorship. It is one of the most professional and exciting leagues in Europe, attracting some best football talents from all over the globe.

Just like any other leagues, La Liga is also guided by some strict rules and regulations regarding promotional and relegation of the clubs as well as how many non-EU players can play in the league. Let us take a quick glance over the La Liga rules.

Rules of Promotion-Relegation

Every year, 20 teams take part in the competition. The three teams finishing at the bottom of the league table are relegated to the 2nd division of the Spanish league system, with the top two rankers in the immediately lower division and the winner in a play-off replacing the relegated clubs.

Inclusion of Non-EU Players

There is an upper cap in regards to retaining of non-EU players in this top-most division of Spanish league. In La Liga, every team is allowed to retain a maximum of three offshore players. Even in the second division, each participating clubs can keep hold of only 2 players. If any La Liga club is relegated to the lower division, it is allowed to keep hold of the same number of foreign players until their contracts are expired.

What does it mean by “Non-EU”? The phrase has been repeated many times following several verdicts from the European Court of Justice. According to a decision adopted by the Spanish Federation in this regard, the participating La Liga teams are entitled to make the best use of the rules and bring many foreign players to their squad.

Claim of Citizenship

The foreign players are allowed to apply for Spanish citizenship from the countries where their ancestors descended from. In La Liga, a non-EU player can claim for Spanish Citizenship if he has played in Spain for at least, five years and it may result into triple citizenship. Let us give you an example. Leo Franco was born in Argentina and has Italian ancestry. He is capable of applying for Spain citizenship, having played in the country for more than five years.

The players arriving from the ACP countries including Africa, the Caribbean and Pacific, are not considered against the Non-EU category as per the Kolpak ruling.

Breach of Rules & Conduct

All the La Liga clubs are required to abide by the rules and regulations as clearly specified by the highest authority in the Spanish football league system that, in turn, ensures compatibility with the guidelines made by FIFA, the governing body of football in the world. In recent times, Barcelona have been handed punishment by FIFA for failing to conform to the rules regarding transfer of the players after allegation of transfer of the under-age players (below 18).

The defending La Liga champions are not allowed to play any new player until January of 2016. The club applied against the ban but it was not lifted. However, they have been allowed to sell players during the time of transfer ban.

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What Happened In The UK In 1990?

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1990 was an action-packed year in the UK, in which events took place that changed the face of the country. Breaking the year down into the biggest political, sports and entertainment news; here’s what happened…

First off, it was the year that the literal breakthrough was made in the channel tunnel; construction workers drilling through the final slice of rock that separated the UK and French halves of the project. Television pictures showed the workers celebrating as they came face-to-face in the middle of the tunnel before walking on to have their passports stamped in the opposite country (the first time anyone has walked between the two countries since the Ice Age!).

Politically, the ruling Conservative party endured a far from ideal year. Demonstrations against the poll tax they had earlier implemented led to the worst riots seen in London for a century; with over 100 people being injured and nearly 350 arrested. Their long time figure-head Margaret Thatcher took the fall for this, amongst other things, and resigned as Prime Minister, to be replaced by John Major.

Sports wise, 1990 is best remembered for the Italia ’90 football world cup. Going into the tournament surrounded in controversy, and having already announced that he would leave after it, Bobby Robson led England to the semi-finals of the competition, where they lost on penalties to eventual world cup winners West Germany. However, perhaps the biggest winners were the ‘Three Tenors’ (specifically Pavarotti) who became major world stars as a result of their singing performances throughout the tournament.

Other stars to arrive in 1990, this time coming from America, came in the form of the yellow skinned ‘Simpsons’. By the end of the year everyone was familiar with Homer, Bart, Marge, Lisa and Maggie, and the catchphrase ‘Eat My Shorts’. Also coming over from the States was David Hasselhoff’s and Pamela Anderson’s ‘Baywatch’. As lifeguards in Los Angeles, they ran about in not much clothing and saved some lives; everyone was happy and the show was a big hit.

The biggest film of 1990 was ‘Home Alone’ which made a star of the little boy (Macaulay Culkin) who woke up to find that his Christmas wish had come true and that his family had disappeared. Also out that year was ‘Pretty Woman’, starring Julia Roberts and Richard Gere, which involved a love affair between a streetwise working girl and a rich, high-flying businessman.

Musically, ‘Hanging Tough” by the boy band ‘New Kids on the Block’ was the 1st of 17 singles to top the charts throughout the year; the biggest selling of which was ‘The Righteous Brothers’ recording of ‘Unchained Melody’ (which featured in the film ‘Ghost’). Madonna achieved her 7th number one single with ‘Vogue’ and went on to top the albums chart for 9 weeks (selling 3.6 million copies) with her greatest hits release ‘The Immaculate Collection’. The Christmas number one fell to Cliff Richard and his single ‘Saviour’s Day’; making him the only person to have a number one in the 50s, 60s, 70s, 80s and 90s.

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Sports Journalism

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As the name suggests, Sports Journalism reports on sports topics and events and it is an essential element of any news media organization. Today a career in sports is at its boom and which also brings wonderful career opportunities for sports journalists as well. Television, radio, magazines, internet have become an integral part of people’s life. Many of them are ardent fans of different sports; they switch to TV, websites, newspaper for getting latest updates and news in their sports. Thus, the scope of sports journalism is increasing gradually. Sports Journalism prepares students to sports reporting career and also introduces them with the writing of a sports writer and media professionals use.

But still a lot to done in this field, it is disappointing to say that there are not enough good sports magazines in Indian languages. A couple of English magazines are available in the market which cater with the need of limited fans but many sports loving people who are not comfortable in English do not enjoy this privilege.

Today it is a rewarding vocation which requires talented and skilled media professionals. To be a journalist you need to know inside out of your subject and have a passion to make a mark in this vocation.

It also demands lot of hard work and onus. However, rewards are lucrative, a journalist gets box seats at the games, meets internationals sports star, gets lot of exposure while traveling from one country to another, getting to know the people who train Olympics athletes and fame appreciations from the readers and fans.

Today, internet has become an important part of sports journalism. Almost all journalists have to start from ground zero. So if you are an aspiring Journalist, you can start with your own blogs on your favorite team or particular sport. This helps you to build up your portfolio of self-published clips and if any sports organization finds your blog interesting then you could also get a chance to work with them.

Today Sports Journalism has turned into long form writing, it also produces popular books on sports which include biographies, history and investigations. Many western countries have their own national association of sports journalists. In India there has been recent growth in Sports Journalism. The sports column in various leading newspapers is widely popular among readers. Indians today not just appreciate cricket but they have also understood the importance of other sports also like football, hockey, wrestling, boxing etc.

You could go for a degree in sports journalism which could enhance your writing and reporting skills and also trains you efficiently in the areas sports. You would learn to write technical details about a sport in a simple manner. One could also opt for journalism and match reporting course which deals with going to sport games, sporting events, and venues, meeting with players then reporting all this to sports crazy audience.

The career opportunities in sports journalism are – match reporter, freelance sports journalist and sports writer. You would get to work in newspaper, radio, TV, magazines and online journalism.

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