SPORTS & RECREATION

NFL Century: The One-Hundred-Year Rise of America's Greatest Sports League

Crown. Aug. 2019. 384p. ISBN 9781635653595. $28; ebk. ISBN 9781635653601. SPORTS.
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Author Horrigan worked for the Pro Football Hall of Fame for 42 years, serving as the executive director before his recent retirement. As such, he is intimately acquainted with the history of the NFL and here offers something of a swan song of his accumulated knowledge, recounting the league’s first 100 years by primarily concentrating on ownership and league management, with less focus on games, seasons, teams, and players. Many of the stories and figures have been oft-told, but Horrigan includes unique connections and little-known facts to make the familiar seem new. With some tales, however, he casts new light on details forgotten with the passage of time. Horrigan does not deal with player health and aging concerns but identifies three recurring themes evident in the first century of the league: player salary demands, player movement restrictions, and college football player eligibility issues. These themes reverberate throughout.
VERDICT This engagingly written chronicle of the most powerful and influential sports league in American history should be of wide interest.

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