One thing that kind of surprises me is how many people actually base their decision about whether to move to the Philippines on how much (or little) American Football they can catch on TV here. Two or three times per month, I get e-mails from people asking me how many games per week they can catch on TV. Usually, people ask about NFL football, but recently I’ve also gotten several inquiries regarding College Football too.
I used to be a big football fan back in the 1980’s and before, but around 1990 or so I kind of lost interest in the game. As I recall, the players went on strike one year around that time, and after that I just couldn’t get back into the game, I guess. Oh, from time to time I will watch a game on TV, if it is on, but I am not like I was when I was a rabid fan. Back in those days, I knew all the players, and would look forward to games with great anticipation. Now, I might watch one or two games per year, and sometimes I have to force myself to pay attention.
For those of you who are big football fans, though, I have some good news. This year, the new football season is much more widely covered on Philippine TV, at least on Cable TV here. Starting on January 1, 2008, we got a new sports channel called Balls TV and they have a fair amount of football coverage. Currently, while typing this article (I am writing it on Monay morning, Philippine time, but it will be published on Wednesday) I am watching NFL Sunday Night Football on Balls (NBC coverage). One thing that kind of excites me is that one of the announcers is somebody that I have always liked, John Madden. In the past, we never got the “real” announcers that you would hear on US TV coverage, we always got announcers that you had never heard of.
Over the past weeks since the new football season got underway, I have noticed that we are getting 3 or 4 NFL games and 3 or 4 College games every week! Some games are covered live (Sunday Night and Monday Night NFL games), and others are on tape delay. Sometimes it is Wednesday or Thursday before we see games from last weekend (except the live games), but at least the games can be seen. The game that I am watching now (Monday morning, 9am Philippine time) is Chicago Bears vs. Philadelphia Eagles, and it is currently tied at 7 in the 2nd quarter (this is the Sunday Night NFL game, so I am watching it live).
So, anyway, I just thought that I would let you guys know that the situation as far as seeing football games on TV is improving in the Philippines. I know that this is important to some of you guys!
What could be better than watching the NFL with a cold San Miguel on the table next to you? Well, maybe we could add some balut for a snack during the game!