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  #11  
Old 07-24-2018, 08:31 PM
Hot Springs Bathers Hot Springs Bathers is offline
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I have asked this question before on this board and while there will never be a clear answer, all of the above plays a role in football being the poor cousin to baseball in collecting.

I also think as adults we look back to our youth not only as card collectors but as budding athletes. I was never very good at either sport but I continued playing football through my freshman year in college. I walk with a distinct limp with two bad knees from five surgeries.

As a thirteen year old I ran with excitement to baseball practice at the Boys & Girls Club every day. Also as thirteen year old I started thinking about football practice about two hours beforehand but not always with joy. It depended in the mid-60's on what we would be doing that day.

Also tonight I sat back and watched the constant scroll across the bottom of the screen on the sports channels and 90 percent of the NFL news and often college football news contains legal content, much of it in a very negative light. The NFL has had to latch on to a VERY small handful of players they use as their front men. Every night the TV and NFL execs should fall on their knees and give thanks for the Manning family. Lets face it pro football is not a pretty game with nice people. We have not even touched on injuries (other than my knees) google five of your favorite players from the 1960's and see how many of them have died or are suffering from CTE, it is very sobering and sad.

I collect football cards, I've finished most of the 60's and 70's and have 80 percent of the 40's and 50's. I still have my heroes and Bart Starr is as classy a gentleman as there is in this world. There just are not as many of those guys as we would hope.

With all that said I will continue to collect football and hope for better days.
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  #12  
Old 07-24-2018, 09:48 PM
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Everyone has made good points on this topic so far. The more I think about it, the more simple I think I might be. At the end of the day, I like sports (maybe too much at times), I like history, and I like assembling items that go together. Baseball and football have always been my two favorites, and set building has really hit me hard the last few years. Football is cheaper, the sets are smaller, and for those reasons I drift that way more and more. Those are the motivating factors for why I collect football cards. That's not to say I won't buy more baseball. In fact, I am finishing a 1954 Topps baseball set. However, I have been trending more to football collecting the past couple of years. That isn't likely to change, and my collecting has almost zero to do with today's NFL. I am interested in the 1960s and maybe the 1950s cards and watch a little NFL but not much these days.

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  #13  
Old 07-25-2018, 06:57 AM
Hot Springs Bathers Hot Springs Bathers is offline
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Robert I don't think you could have explained any better for many of us! Go Hogs
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  #14  
Old 07-25-2018, 08:35 AM
jefferyepayne jefferyepayne is offline
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Man, I go away on travel for a few days and a big time football thread starts up on Net54. Awesome stuff, guys!

All of what has been said is great and there's truth in a lot of these ideas.

I will add two more ideas to the mix.

First, organized professional football is 50 years younger than organized professional baseball. I think to adequately compare football and baseball you need to compare the football hobby today with the baseball hobby of 1968 (50 years ago). Even though football has risen to the top of the popularity heap, we are 50 years behind in tradition, hobby artifacts, card sets, etc. I would argue this has something to do with the smaller number of football collectors too.

Second, because football items are so much cheaper than baseball items are and there are far less of them, football card / memorabilia collectors are hoarders. There just isn't a huge buy/sell market driving buzz and visibility of cards people haven't seen before. A very active hobby takes demand AND supply and for at least the pre-war items/sets, supply is very limited to the point where most collectors haven't even heard of, much less seen, many sets. POP on some sets are just crazy low.

jeff

Last edited by jefferyepayne; 07-26-2018 at 06:26 AM.
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  #15  
Old 07-25-2018, 11:05 AM
stevecarlton1972 stevecarlton1972 is offline
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Football Fans are much different then Baseball fans, and I think that has a lot to do with less collectors. Baseball Fans are usually stat people (that is what draws them to the sport) while Football fans 'are at the' moment people.

Football fans could really care less about the history of the game (most fans only count Superbowl Championships and don't even recognize the Pre-Merger era other then Lombardi, Jim Brown and Johnny Unitas). Most fans could care less that every QB throws for 5,000 yards now because of the change in rules, where Dan Marino was the ONLY QB to do that in the first 75 years of the league. No records are really sacred to them.

Baseball fans gravitate to records such as 20 game winners, .300 hitters, and 40+ Homerun power guys, so it makes collecting cards more interesting. I can't tell you how many times I checked out the back of a Baseball Card for a players lifetime stats, whereas there are no stats on the back of an Offensive Lineman to look at it.

Even though I am a diehard NFL and MLB fan, I believe MLB fans are better fans of their respective sport. It's easy being an NFL fan, as you need to set aside 16 Sunday's and maybe a few Monday/Thursday's on your schedule, so it's not really time consuming. Baseball is a sport you have to keep up with from April to October (Following pennant races is a big appeal), and that obsessiveness is a cause/effect of more Baseball card collectors then Football.

Last edited by stevecarlton1972; 07-25-2018 at 11:08 AM.
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  #16  
Old 07-25-2018, 11:14 AM
Hot Springs Bathers Hot Springs Bathers is offline
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Great points Jeff. The point Robert makes about finding Hall of Famers for a fraction of a middling baseball Hall of Famer pricing makes this very attractive.

I have often wondered about printing numbers from the 1950's and 60's for baseball and football. I would venture a guess that there are many more 1952 Topps Mantles out there than there are 1952 Bowman larges of any specific player especially SP's. Once again demand creates the skewing of prices.

Please don't point this out to PSA driven investors
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  #17  
Old 07-25-2018, 01:48 PM
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Anish Anish is offline
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I would collect football more if there were more Pre-War issues. Everything Post-War is easy to find but there are only a couple Pre-War sets and they are very expensive.

Also, other than Nagurski and Grange many of the big Pre-War names (Thorpe, Hutson, etc) don’t have mainstream cards that were made during their careers.
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  #18  
Old 07-25-2018, 07:53 PM
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My entirely unscientific take:

I collected FB as a kid, stopping around 1975. That is the only reason I collect it now, and all I collect are the cards from 1979 and earlier, with rare exceptions.

I know quite a few people who are alienated from the modern NFL for a variety of reasons: thug players; concussion denial; the injuries the sport inflicts on its players; poor treatment of its cheerleaders as workers...the list just goes on.

I find the sport boring and slow, especially when televised. The actual play takes up only a small fraction of the time of a telecast. I cannot sit through it.

The 1960s-1970s had such fun players. We don't see that any more what with all the personal branding considerations. Now, that is endemic to all sports, but it is such a contrast from the days of these guys:









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Last edited by Exhibitman; 07-25-2018 at 07:57 PM.
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  #19  
Old 07-25-2018, 07:59 PM
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Jeff, I was wondering where you were!! Good points. I hadn't really thought about your point of big time football being about 50 years behind baseball in terms of history. That may play a role in the lower prices and relative affordability of football cards. I guess that would be like buying baseball cards "back in the day" before the boom. That is encouraging as a football card collector...just don't tell anyone.

My only football collecting experience is '50s and '60s, but I know you and others on this board know prewar football. To your point about lack of availability, I believe it. I practically never see such items for sale...and I do look.

Someone else mentioned the double whammy of not many big prewar names and not many cards for those greats of yesteryear. To date, that has no impact on me personally as I really like the '50s issues, and I really like the AFL cards and sets from the '60s, but I can see how that might dissuade would-be prewar football collectors. Of course, when you factor in college football along with early professional football, there are many great and colorful players...more than most people know about. It just takes a little curiousity and effort to "discover" them. Baseball has done a much better job of putting legends of the game (even relatively minor ones) front and center.

Jeff, I think I read one of your recent posts somewhere where you succinctly pointed out that football sets, for the most part, are smaller and less expensive. What's not to like? I grew up liking football, too, and there are some wonderful football cards/sets out there.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jefferyepayne View Post
Man, I go away on travel for a few days and a big time football thread starts up on Net54. Awesome stuff, guys!

All of what has been said is great and there's truth in a lot of these ideas.

I will add two more idea to the mix.

First, organized professional football is 50 years younger than organized professional baseball. I think to adequately compare football and baseball you need to compare the football hobby today with the baseball hobby of 1968 (50 years ago). Even though football has risen to the top of the popularity heap, we are 50 years behind in tradition, hobby artifacts, card sets, etc. I would argue this has something to do with the smaller number of football collectors too.

Second, because football items are so much cheaper than baseball items are and there are far less of them, football card / memorabilia collectors are hoarders. There just isn't a huge buy/sell market driving buzz and visibility of cards people haven't seen before. A very active hobby takes demand AND supply and for at least the pre-war items/sets, supply is very limited to the point where most collectors haven't even heard of, much less seen, many sets. POP on some sets are just crazy low.

jeff


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  #20  
Old 07-25-2018, 08:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Exhibitman View Post
My entirely unscientific take:

I collected FB as a kid, stopping around 1975. That is the only reason I collect it now, and all I collect are the cards from 1979 and earlier, with rare exceptions.

I know quite a few people who are alienated from the modern NFL for a variety of reasons: thug players; concussion denial; the injuries the sport inflicts on its players; poor treatment of its cheerleaders as workers...the list just goes on.

I find the sport boring and slow, especially when televised. The actual play takes up only a small fraction of the time of a telecast. I cannot sit through it.

The 1960s-1970s had such fun players. We don't see that any more what with all the personal branding considerations. Now, that is endemic to all sports, but it is such a contrast from the days of these guys:









Good points and cards!! To your point about today's NFL: I personally can separate my feelings about collecting football cards of better times (like you mentioned in the 60s) from my feelings about today's corporate NFL. However, I know that many don't want to separate those feelings and have walked away from pro football. I myself don't care nearly as much about it as I did even five years ago. College football is still somewhat enjoyable for me, but it isn't without its issues, too. In the end, all the sports seem more flawed as we age I guess. I just try and focus on enjoying the cards I can afford to collect and not dwell on all the issues and problems. The cards are fun stuff!

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