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Welcome back to Player Affinity’s Sports Movie Madness! Last week, we held the opening round of voting to determine the best sports movie ever. You voted, and we’ve got your results, as well as matchups for Round 2.
But first, let’s recap for those of you new to the tournament. In the Sports Movie Madness tournament, there are seven sports and one mega-category of miscellaneous sports, so eight regions total. This is the Football Region. Below are the four football films remaining after the first round of voting. There are two matchups based on our original seedings, and your job is to pick which movie you deem worthy of winning each matchup. Simply enter a comment by Sunday at 5:00 pm with the two movies you think should win each matchup (once again, not any two movies, but one of the two movies going up against each other, so no voting for Remember the Titans and Friday Night Lights, only one or the other) and your votes count! After a winner is determined in each region, those films will face off against one another until we have a winner!
Last week’s votes knocked out the number one seed in the football bracket, Rudy! The rest of the films should clearly watch out: Adam Sandler’s The Waterboy isn’t going down without a fight. The rest of the categories were less shocking. The Longest Yard (1974) pulled off a minor upset, while Friday Night Lights and Remember the Titans held down home-field advantage and moved on. To vote in this round, simply read through the matchups and leave a comment with your choice for each matchup.
8 The Waterboy def. 1 Rudy
5 The Longest Yard (1974) def. 4 Any Given Sunday
3 Friday Night Lights def. 6 The Replacements
2 Remember the Titans def. 7 The Blind Side
8 The Waterboy vs. 5 The Longest Yard (1974)
The Waterboy is simply vintage Adam Sandler. The story of an athletically gifted, mentally shorthanded Southern boy, it’s full of your typical Sandler humor and plenty of hilarious cameos from the usual Sandler suspects. And if that type of humor is your thing, this underdog could cruise through the bracket.
It’s hard to argue that Burt Reynolds ruled Hollywood in the 1970s, and one of his most iconic roles was in The Longest Yard. Equal parts entertaining football movie, hard-hitting prison drama, and surprisingly funny comedy, the film remains a classic to this day and was even remade in 2005 as a straight-up comedy starring Adam Sandler and Chris Rock.
3 Friday Night Lights vs. 2 Remember the Titans
Many consider Peter Berg’s Friday Night Lights to be the best sports movie ever — bar none. There’s no denying its importance (it gave us one of the best television series of the last decade), and Berg’s skill in getting us to care about his characters without resorting to much cheap manipulation is exceptional.
Remember the Titans is one of those films that everyone watched a dozen times in high school. Who doesn’t love Denzel Washington’s Coach Boone? Or the unlikely partnership between Julius and Bertier? Or the funky way the team struts onto the field for every game? It might not be groundbreaking cinema, but there’s no denying its ability to uplift and entertain.