2012 u19 World Championship Wrap Up
The junior world championship has come to a close, and I think it was a very successfully tournament. There are some areas that countries need to make strides in, but overall the competition will continue to improve. In case you didn’t know, this was more than just a tournament. There were clinics and other camps going on, including u-17 and u-15 ones, which will help players develop more. As the popularity of American football increases, the competitive nature of the tournaments will too. I’m looking forward to the next JWC in 2014.
I didn’t recap the first game yesterday, so I’ll say this. The Japan/Austria game was great, if you’re a fan of defenses. Austria gave Japan all they wanted, but coudln’t get the ball moving. Japan had one big drive that proved to be the game winner.
Before I get into what I’m about to say, I want to go ahead and say congrats to Canada. They played well all tournament and won it outright. This is the first tournament the United States team has participated that they didn’t win, and that’s very historical.
And that’s really the only word I’m going to use. Historical. A lot of people make this about to be a big deal, but in my mind, it’s not that big…. Beating the US at their own game is huge, don’t get me wrong. But… it’s Canada. They have a lot of talent. They have a developed organization. And it showed last night. But to really be a game changer, someone else (other than Japan) is going to have to beat the US. Someone is going to have to step up. That’s what’s such a bummer about the US/Austria game. I’m a big fan of Austria. They’ve established a great system over there, and it showed as they moved trough the Euros at the senior level and ended in third place. Their junior team is playing good football too. And just when you thought they were coming along great… they give up 63 unanswered points.
The US, Canada, and Japan are tops in the world right now, at both levels. And until someone else (I’ll throw this in — someone other than Mexico) steps up (I’m looking at you, Germany), the sport still has a way to go.
The announcers in one of the earlier games made a good point, though. Twenty years ago, the “Dream Team” lit up the Olympics in basketball. The US was tops, and it looked like they would stay that way. But in very little time, things changed drastically. Other countries now have very competitive basketball programs.
So right now, American football is still a US sport. But twenty years down the road… who knows.
No offense meant to Canada. They played great, and they won, and nothing should be taken away from them. They have a target on their back now (at the junior level). The 2014 tournament should be great. Austria will improve, American Samoa will get a good seed, and team USA will be back. It’s a very exciting time for American football around the globe.
You can find the final standings here: https://ifafrankings.wordpress.com/2012/07/07/u19-world-championship-final-standings/
Cool Blog Stuff
I want to thank everyone for stopping by over the past week. The previous record for hits in a day was 183, set on July 16th, 2011, the day of the senior WC final. We broke that on July 3rd with 212, then hit 256 on Friday, followed by 267 yesterday. Overall, we had 1,279 through out the tournament. Feel free to stop on by any time. I don’t get to update often (because not much really goes on in the IFAF world), but when something happens, I try to post it, especially game. Follow me on twitter to get notified when any new content is posted.
I’m going to work throughout this week to update the site a bit. I’ll get a junior rankings together, and put up some junior scores (and some senior ones I haven’t put up yet). I’ll also attempt to get started on team profile pages, but there’s no promise on if/when that gets done.
Again, thanks for checking in during the tournament. Stop on by this September for the European Championship C-Group coverage!