Tuesday, August 01, 2006

football isn't chess

ah, the title might seem obvious, football isn't chess. it also isn't a giraffe or leaves falling in the cool autumn breeze. I like football, i like chess, i think i'd probably like most giraffes if i got to know them, and there are few things i love more than autumn. Just because i like them doesn't make them identical.
So why the rant?
I often watch sports, and my favorite is football. This evening I was watching NFL live, and the anchor said "well, you know, those coaches are going to have quite a chess game out on the gridiron". I used to be a serious chess player and what they will be playing is not chess. Chess is a game in which the pieces move in identical ways every turn. because the pieces move in identical ways you can carefully calculate every possible move, the likely reactions, and your reactions to those moves. When I was playing competitevely we would generally calculate 10-15 moves into promising lines. Much of the challenge of coaching a football game, i assume, lies in the non standard ways players respond. If a couch makes a decesion the player will sometimes be able to implement it and other times be unable to. Much of this depends on the players clarity of vision, conditioning, and attitude at a given second. The bishop is either able to make it from one square to another or it isn't. Both players know whether it can make it. There is no ucnertainty.
In Chess, the only variables are the players on either side and which color each player starts with. In a football game the variables include, wind speed, coaches, 40-50 players on each team, crowd noise, refereeing, and countless others. In that regard football is probably a more difficult strategic problem given the enormous variety of variables and possible moves.
I love football and i love chess, but fuckin' eh football announcers, just cause something invovles tactical analysis doesn't make it a chess game. get a new analogy.


At 7/09/2007 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Actually, football is chess. I have proof. but it's secret.


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