Let’s face it, we’re all more than a little eager for live entertainment. Whether you’re missing your favorite local show (cough-cough, Studio 5), the final rounds of The Voice, or NBA playoffs – re-runs can only hold us over for so long.
Sports fans are especially feeling the pains of quarantine! This group is passionate, vocal, and all out of sorts in a world with no playoffs or championships. So, here are 10 ways to cope with the sports withdrawals at your house.
The Last Dance
Basketball fans rejoiced over this highly anticipated documentary release last week. The Last Dance is a 10-part documentary series chronicling the 1997-1998 Chicago Bulls’ (aka Michael Jordan’s prime time) quest for a sixth NBA title. Every Sunday night for the next five weeks, two episodes will be released on ESPN. Sure, it’s a story line many sports fans are familiar with, but it offers hours of unseen behind-the-scenes footage from one of the most storied runs in sports’ history.
Crossroad Dash – Nick Heath
Sports fan or not, these twenty second commentated blips are flat out entertaining! Longtime Rugby commentator Nick Heath has taken to YouTube to give everyday activities, like crossing the street, play-by-play analysis. The #LifeCommentary series features mundane walks, “find a bargain” steeplechase, market bartering, and the 2020 Crossroad Dash. Heath’s British accent, witty commentary, and relatable scenarios make these a fun watch for the whole family.
Tournament Style Brackets
A little healthy competition makes for a fun break from routine, especially when it can help you cope with NCAA Tournament withdrawals. Sports and pop culture fans alike have united to create bracket challenges for topics and categories they hold dear. Taylor Swift fan? There’s a bracket for that. The Office fan? There’s a bracket for that too. Fast food and Disney? Yep, the creative and slightly bored social media world has got you covered. Print out your own copies and have the whole family fill them out. The friendly debates and champion announcements will keep you entertained for hours and make for a memorable quarantine activity.
Find the brackets here.
If you’re a Jazz fan, or even a fan of good, thought provoking conversation, you will love this podcast. Utah Jazz forward Joe Ingles and his wife Renae started their own podcast just under a month ago and the result is refreshing insight into the NBA, as well as life as parents and Utahns. The couple hosts the podcast with UtahJazz.com’s Aaron Falk and so far, their guests have included Modern Family’s Ty Burrell, Sweat personal trainer Kelsey Wells, and they’ve thoughtfully navigated topics like their son’s Autism diagnosis and COVID-19. They drop new episodes every Wednesday.
Jelle’s Marble Runs
It took a global pandemic to shine a spotlight on the apparently thriving marble racing industry (you read that right, it’s a full-blown industry). The Jelle’s Marble Runs YouTube page has almost one million subscribers and hundreds of racing videos that feature custom built tracks, shiny ‘n’ speedy marbles, and captivating commentary to match. Watch the races for entertainment or let it serve as a source of creativity for your own at-home marble racing. Either way, you’ve got hours of entertainment at your disposal for the entire family.
If you need a good binge watch, the CW just released their series All American on Netflix. It’s a hybrid of Friday Night Lights and Gossip Girl. Strange combination? Yes, but it’s football heavy and set in the heart of Beverly Hills, right in the middle of Hollywood’s glitz, glamour, and drama. As if that’s not alluring enough, it’s based on the true story of NFL Superbowl Champion Spencer Paysinger’s rise from the slums in South Los Angeles to Beverly Hills and beyond. There are only two seasons out so far, so you can definitely start and finish it during your extra time at home.
Local College Sports
Be it BYU, Utah, Utah State, Weber State, SUU, or Dixie, each school has stepped up to the plate with content from their athletes and coaches to fill the interim. Most platforms are offering Instagram Live interviews with marquee athletes and coaches, at-home workouts that are sport specific (perfect for your growing athletes at home), and archived footage and highlights pre-coronavirus. We recommend turning to each athletic department’s Instagram page for links to each respective sport’s videos and features.
I Promise on Quibi
If warm fuzzies and success stories are what you’re after, look no further than the brand new mobile streaming service Quibi. Los Angeles Lakers star Lebron James has a new short form series on the platform that highlights the highs and lows of at-risk students and their families at his I PROMISE school in Akron, Ohio. It’s uplifting, encouraging, and authentic – all things we could use a little more of right now. New episodes drop every weekday and each one is 10 minutes long or less.
Download Quibi here.
Yes, we know everyone and their dog (and their dog’s friends) are doing Instagram Lives right now, BUT that means your favorite athletes are, too! Think names like Steph Curry and Tony Finau. It’s a rare opportunity to see superstars completely uncut and unedited. A lot of the lives turn into fan Q&As or personal updates on how they’re spending their time at home. What makes this platform even better are the unlikely shared Instagram Lives you will inevitably come across. Take tennis superstars Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal, for example. Who knew these two were friends off the court? We sure didn’t, but that makes tuning in to hear their conversation that much more irresistible.
The Mamba Mentality: How I Play
We’re wrapping up this list with a book recommendation that will serve you well regardless of what sport or stage of life you’re in. Before his tragic passing, NBA great Kobe Bryant put pen to paper and wrote about his famous “Mamba Mentality” and what it looks like across different facets of life to pursue greatness. His candor and relentless “will do” attitude apply to aspiring athletes and everyday people alike. As an added bonus, the book is full of incredible photos chronicling his 20-year NBA career that will take any sports fan on a nostalgic two-decade trip.
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