Football

Kara Durrette / Atlanta Falcons

The Atlanta Falcons will play Thursday night in the first matchup of the NFL preseason, known as the 'Hall of Fame’ game.

 

After Atlanta played host to Super Bowl 53 in February, the Falcons will kick off the 2019 preseason in Canton, Ohio, against the Denver Broncos.

 


AP Photo / David J. Phillip

The New England Patriots clinched their sixth Super Bowl win Sunday in Atlanta, defeating the Los Angeles Rams 13-3. Though it was the lowest-scoring game in Super Bowl history, it was still a big win for college and high school football programs across Georgia.

 

Jon Nelson, host of GPB's "Football Fridays in Georgia" podcast stopped by "On Second Thought" to explain Super Bowl 53's deep roots in Georgia.


On today's show, we looked ahead to Super Bowl LIII this weekend, explored the legacy of Atlanta DJ Alley Cat and heard updates from the GPB newsroom about the Georgia legislature.

GPB reporter Stephen Fowler joined "On Second Thought" to discuss the Gov. Brian Kemp's state budget proposal and a bipartisan group of lawmakers' renewed efforts to pass the Equal Rights Amendment.


Barring a blizzard, Atlanta is ready for Super Bowl LIII. But, still sore from the Falcons' 2017 defeat, how ready are Atlanta fans to welcome the New England Patriots and the Los Angeles Rams to the Dirty Birds' turf?


Georiga saw record turnout for the November midterms, but, as the state heads into runoff elections on Tuesday, early voting numbers are weak, especially among minorities.

“On Second Thought” invited Adrienne Jones to speak about the upcoming runoff election and voting issues. Jones is a political science assistant professor at Morehouse College. Ari Berman from Mother Jones also joined the conversation.

 


Atlanta United

Atlanta United is heading to the MLS Cup Final on Dec. 8, and this weekend marks the SEC Championship between Georgia and Alabama.

GPB reporter Ross Terrell and "Morning Editon" producer Taylor Gantt joined "On Second Thought" to share their predictions on the upcoming games.

We're getting close to the high school football championships time, then College Bowl games and finally Super Bowl LIII right here in Atlanta. Whether you follow the game or the traditions that surround it, Jon Nelson has the play-by-play.

He joined "On Second Thought" to discuss upcoming games and his podcast, "Football Fridays in Georgia."


GPB Sports team

High school football season is just around the corner, and students are already on the field practicing. Before teams hit the gridiron, the GPB Sports team stopped by to talk about the upcoming season.


Emmanuel Johnson / NextGenRadio

In its first season, Atlanta United FC broke records for attendance at U.S. soccer matches. In its second season, fans are still packing the stands.

Atlanta has a rich history of sports that has been historically dominated by college and professional football. But now that Atlanta has a professional soccer team, the sports culture in the city is shifting, said John Nelson, a senior correspondent and host for sports at Georgia Public Broadcasting. Nelson also co-hosts the podcast “Soccer Down Here.”

“When it comes to Atlanta United, what you’re looking at is the expectation of success and all of the trappings that come with it,” he said.

In the past few years, Atlanta sports teams have struggled. The Hawks had a terrible NBA season, the Falcons had a devastating Super Bowl meltdown last year, and the Braves have not been doing well in baseball either.

Soccer fans don’t think Atlanta United has that kind of baggage.

David Goldman / The Associated Press

Atlanta’s the college football center of the world on Monday night, as the University of Georgia Dawgs try to stem the University of Alabama’s Tide, in the National Championship game. A win for Georgia would be the first national championship victory for the team in more than 35 years.

  • Championship Game Ticket Prices
  • Falcons Fly To Los Angeles
  • Delta Flight Delays

Tampa Bay Mizzou

UGA has a great football team this year. They’re ranked number seven in the nation, after a spell in first. But it’s not all good news. UGA ranks dead last in the Southeastern Conference when it comes to  graduation success rates for student athletes – all while the university’s overall student graduation rates are way up. Eric Kelderman is Senior Reporter for the Chronicle of Higher Education. Also with us is Professor of Sports Journalism at UGA, Vicki Michaelis.

Kennesaw State University: Cheerleaders Who Knelt For Anthem To Be On Field

Nov 9, 2017

A Georgia university which moved its football cheerleaders inside a stadium tunnel after a group of black cheer squad members knelt during the national anthem has decided to let them again take the field during pre-game ceremonies.

This time, it will be at a game where military members are honored.

In a letter to students and faculty, Kennesaw State University President Sam Olens said Wednesday that freedom of speech must be protected.

Mercer University Holds Its Own Against Auburn

Sep 29, 2017
Elizabeth Tammi / GPB News

Last weekend, one small middle Georgia university’s football team faced the 15th best college football team in the nation.

GPB News/Emily Cureton

In South Georgia’s Wiregrass Country, a plaque in the town of Quitman marks a hanging place. It’s where, in August of 1864, four men were executed for plotting a slave rebellion. Over the next century, mob violence against African-Americans often erupted in South Georgia.

This is where our Senior Editor Don Smith was born and raised. He moved away in 1958. Don recently went back to his hometown to mark the anniversary of the Civil War hanging, and talk with longtime residents about how they remember the county’s history of racial violence. GPB's Emily Cureton reports. 

Atlanta Falcons

A new report finds chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) in 110 of 111 brains of deceased former NFL players. The study adds to a  growing body of knowledge about the connection between contact sports and brain-damaging concussions.

UGA Approves $63 Million Sanford Stadium Enhancement

Feb 15, 2017
Pruddle / Wikimedia Commons

A $63 million enhancement to Georgia's Sanford Stadium that will provide a new locker room has been approved by the athletic association's board of directors.

The project also includes a new video board, a plaza for fans to use on game days and a room to host recruits. The project approved at the board's quarterly meeting on Tuesday is expected to be completed in time for the 2018 season.

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Later tonight, we'll know who's going to the Super Bowl.

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UNIDENTIFIED MAN #1: Matt (ph) loads, throws, takes the shot, touchdown.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN #2: Yeah.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

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Sam Hatcher

In 1916, two teams played one of the most lopsided games in college football history. Georgia Tech beat Cumberland College with a score of 222–0. We talk with author Sam Hatcher about his new book on the game, and how he says it forever changed college football in the South. 

Voters in seven more states said "yes" to marijuana this month. Pot now is legal for recreational or medicinal use in more than half the country.

It's still against federal law and classified as a Schedule 1 drug, meaning U.S. officials consider marijuana to have a high risk of abuse or harm, and no accepted medical use in treatment. Also, it's still banned in professional sports.

GPB SPORTS

 The high school football playoffs are currently underway across the state. And GPB has you covered on all the big matchups. GPB Sports host Jackie Brittain joins us to talk about the upcoming playoff matchups and why Georgia is such a hotbed for high school football. 

College football fans will swarm stadiums across the country this weekend, as the 2016 season begins.

But Georgia Tech will open their season 3,900 miles from their home turf, as they face off against Boston College in Dublin, Ireland.

ATLANTA FALCONS

The NFL pre-season began last week for all 32 teams, including the Atlanta Falcons. The Dirty Birds are hoping to shake off last year’s mediocre 8-8 season. The Falcons will head across the street to Mercedes-Benz stadium after this season, will their last year in the Georgia Dome be a memorable one?

We ask GPB sports correspondent Jon Nelson what he thinks of the Falcon’s chances this year and their prospects for the future.