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Two things instantly transport me back to my childhood—the smell of freshly cut grass in the spring, and the roar of the crowd at a football game in the fall. That thread from the past repeats itself annually as I check my high school alma mater in the CIF standings, and my friends gather at homes and bars around town on Saturday to root for the old college team. And as my friends’ kids grow up and head off to university, I find my football world expanding. I used to simply follow the local cross-town rivalry between USC and UCLA, but the stakes have changed now that I have reason to watch the Big Ten as well as the Pac Twelve, and many of the smaller colleges and universities in between. I’ve always loved an underdog, and there’s nothing more thrilling than an unexpected upset that moves a lower-ranked team to the top of the leaderboard.
As for pro football, the league has definitely suffered its share of scandal and controversy in the past few seasons, but there’s still cause for excitement in the City of Angels. Carson recently approved plans for a $1.7 billion stadium that could house both the Oakland Raiders and the San Diego Chargers if the teams cannot strike deals for new facilities in their respective cities.
Not to be outdone, the city of Inglewood has passed a similar initiative to build an 80,000 seat stadium in hopes of luring the St. Louis Rams back to California. To further complicate the situation, the Raiders and Chargers would likely have to undergo a division shift in order to share the stadium. Both teams are currently part of the AFC West but are willing to let the league make the decision about who plays in which conference or division in order to share the new facility.
To be clear, none of the decisions about pro football coming back to L.A. after a 20-year hiatus will be finalized during the fall 2015 season. But with the owners meeting in New York in October, and a possible decision regarding team relocation pending in January, a girl can dream!