Monday, October 26, 2009

A Sportscaster's Guide to Watching Football

By Mark Oristano

From the back of the book:

“Want to know what everyone is cheering about? Learn to enjoy – and understand – the game with the football fanatic in your life. This book is the ultimate guide for the novice fan. … Laced with hilarious and insightful anecdotes from Mark Oristano’s career as a pro football sportscaster, “A Sportscaster’s Guide to Watching Football” will turn you into a football-watching pro, or at least let you fake it.”

I’ve been a fan of football for many years. At one time, I could easily spout off stats, players, teams, coaches … you name it. I haven’t had a lot of time to follow the game the last few years, but I still watch now and then.

That said, I started reading this book with the perspective that I might learn some fun little tricks for when I do find time to watch a game with family or friends. Mark Oristano does offer some funny lines to use that will make everyone around you think you’re the ultimate know-it-all when it comes to the sport.

He also explains the game itself, including offense, defense (pronounced DEE-fense), player positions and more. It was a good chance to catch up on my beloved sport.

I’m not sure, however, how novice you are expected to be when you read this book. Even with my background in the sport (and yes, I’ve also covered a few games in my career as a journalist), there were spots in the book where I wondered if someone coming into it with no experience might have trouble digesting the information. I did a couple double-takes myself, which is why I only gave it 3 books.

I might have read through the book too quickly. For the true novice, slowing down and taking the time to think about what Mark is saying would be more educational.

But, all in all, I did enjoy the book and found it quite entertaining. I’d recommend it to anyone with an interest in football, even someone who already thinks they know it all!

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