Every four years, it seems that new sports are added to the Olympics to help match the growing popularity for them across the globe. For the 2016 Olympics, the voids from baseball and softball were replaced with Rugby sevens and golf.
Now, the International Federation of American Football is taking the next step for the 2020 Olympics to have the game introduced as an Olympic sport.
As Tokyo holds the hosting honors, there is a push for the Olympic committee to allow American Football into the mix. Much like the bidding for the host city, there is a bidding process to the Olympic committee for new sports to be added.
Over they years, the number of sports have changed. The original Olympic games only held nine different sports. That number has increased up to 28 sports for 2016’s games in Rio de Janeiro. For a sport to be considered, it must be widespread in at least 75 countries in at least four continents.
This may be the hardest obstacle for american football to overcome as the expenses of the game make it difficult to spread across all cultural and economic backgrounds around the world.
Overall there will be twenty-six sports vying for an opportunity to join the 2020 sports. While the decision is not expected to be made until next August, these sports will be talked about around the clock with the Olympic committee:
- (American) Football
- Dance Sport
- Air Sports
- Bridge (The card game)
- Flying disc
- Roller Sports
- Underwater Sports
- Sports Climbing
- Tug of War
In all likely hood, American football will not make it to the Olympics for a number of reasons. One, the skill differential between the top countries and the bottom countries will be as close to inhumane as possible.
The international support from fans likely will not be there as NFL teams would NEVER allow their players to compete. And finally, there would likely be too much confusion between the football gold medal match and the football gold medal match (futbol v. football).
*Featured Photo (above) credit to USA TODAY Sports