One of the most popular sports in the United States and Canada is American football. This contact team sport is a combination of physical play along with strategic motion together with the ultimate objective of scoring points by furthering the ball into the opponents goal line or reaching their end zone by either carrying the ball and running with it or passing it to some team member. The team which scores the most points in the stipulated time is declared the winner.
American football has its origins in rugby football but has adapted itself with some changes to the American and Canadian system. Though Canadian football and American football are predominantly quite similar there are some differences in the forms such as in the team size, playing area, number of downs, time rules etc. The differences are certainly not major and each may be adapted into another with some degree of tuning.
There are two major forms of American football played in the United States, namely, collegiate football and professional football. With the growth and the increasing popularity a number of football leagues were born in the country. The two most powerful and prestigious leagues that are in existence in the country presently are the National Football League as well as the United Football League.
American football games that see the participation of student athletes from the various colleges, military academies and universities across the country is known as collegiate or college football. It was through college football the American football got into the news and became as big a sports activity as it is today. Though football or rugby was played mostly in schools in England, the game was exported to America. The first American football game to get played in America was in 1874 between Harvard University and McGill University, Montreal. The first collegiate football competition was held the following year in 1875 in the match played between Tufts University and Harvard.
Modern day college football is in the sports news with the first kick off in the football season on the first Labor Day weekend a week prior to the NFL games and continues till the beginning of December. The penultimate weekend of the college football season sees most of the rivalry matches and conference games being played.
The professional football players are those teams that play American football at a professional level. These professional teams are a part of the two leagues within the Unites States known as the NFL as well as the UFL. The NFL enjoys the status of being the largest professional football league in the world. Formed with eleven teams this league has grown in strength and now consists of 32 teams. The league is further divided into the American Football Conference plus the National Football conference and these conferences contain four divisions consisting of four teams each respectively.
The NFL season particularly the Super Bowl, which is the final championship game is followed by sports enthusiasts and news providers equally as it truly is one of the biggest games among the Americans.