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Posts Tagged ‘ Pennsylvania ’

NFL: Football Returns As Packers Seek To Topple Seahawks

football

It’s back. That other kind of football. The American one, where they throw the ball, wear all those big pads and make tackles with the velocity of lorries in fourth gear. The NFL never really goes away, because the draft has developed into a huge event with build-up starting the morning after the Super Bowl, and then pre-season training starts months in advance of the regular season. It is remarkable how the NFL has managed to be a year-round sport even though they only play for four months of the year. Maybe that’s why it is such a relief to have regular competition back now.

Thursday night will see the reigning Super Bowl champions, the Seattle Seahawks, kick the year off with a home game against the Green Bay Packers. No team has won successive Super Bowl’s since the Patriots in 2004/05, but the Seahawks were clearly the dominant side in the NFL last season. Although they have lost some talented guys, they look well positioned to reign once more. Continue reading

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Irish Born Star Looking Forward To Croke Park Classic Homecoming

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Ahead of the inaugural Croke Park Classic, an American Football game between top college sides Penn State and the University of Central Florida at the end of August, we caught up with Irish-born kicker for UCF, Sean Galvin.

Sean Galvin was about fourteen years old when his family left the hometown of Bandon, fully immersed in the traditional GAA ways. “We rivalled Clonakilty and the likes around there. I was always into the hurling. Big into Diarmuid O’Sullivan. Sure he used to work in Bandon there for a while, doing construction work up there. The O’hAilpÌn brothers and Joe Deane and all them, they were my heroes growing up.” He hasn’t lost the accent, either. Continue reading

NFL Playoffs: Divisional Round

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Last weekend saw the elimination of the Packers, Bengals, Chiefs and Eagles from the race to the Super Bowl. It did go to show that the suggested changes to the playoff system in future years would be absurd, as it brought about two good games, one great one and one frankly absurd comeback win. Twelve top teams getting the chance to compete for the Super Bowl seems like the right fit, and it would be a shame to see the level of post-season games be diluted in years to come. Whether that matters if more money could be made with changes is an entirely different matter.

This weekend sees the winners of last weekend (Colts, Saints, Chargers and Forty-Niners) progress to the next round, where their reward is to play against the top two sides from their respective conferences. Scant reward, a game against one of the Broncos, Patriots, Seahawks or Panthers, who will be coming off of a week’s rest. But everyone left standing is in with a shot of going to New York for Super Bowl XLVIII. Here, we review the games taking place this weekend, which will set up the conference deciders. Continue reading

NFL Playoffs: Wild-card Round

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The regular season has now ended, and the twelve teams for the playoffs have been settled. While Denver, New England, Seattle and Carolina get a week to rest up, the other eight have to go straight into battle this weekend for the right to play one of them. Here, we examine the fixtures taking place this Saturday and Sunday, and try to predict (in a decidedly unscientific manner) who is likely to emerge, and who will be going home after a one-and-done showing. Continue reading

Ireland Welcomes One Millionth American Visitor Of 2013

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The one millionth American visitor to Ireland this year – Leonie Higgins – arrived in Dublin this morning. She flew in from JFK with her husband Jim. To mark the milestone occasion, Tourism Ireland and Aer Lingus offered the couple two return tickets just before they left JFK for Dublin – for a future visit to Ireland.

The Irish-American couple, who live in Montgomery, in upstate New York, travel to Ireland regularly to attend the races at Punchestown and to play golf. However, this is their first time to spend Christmas in Ireland. Continue reading

NFL Playoffs: Runners And Riders

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With only two games left to play in the regular season, it seems time for a comprehensive overview of the runners and riders for the playoff berths that are still to be decided. We already have three teams who have secured some kind of playoff game for themselves in January, but this is one of the most interesting periods in the NFL season, with everyone who is still mathematically in with a shout trying to claw their way forward for a shot at the Superbowl. Continue reading

Prisoners : A Hidden Truth , A Desperate Search

prisoners

Taut is not a word usually associated with movies that exceed the two-hour mark, but at 153 minutes ‘Prisoners’ manages to avoid being one of the sprawling bloated concoctions Hollywood has come to churn out of late. Denis Villeneuve, the film’s Canadian director, has made his English language debut with a tense engaging thriller that achieves that rare feat of being both difficult and highly enjoyable.

Two young girls in Pennsylvania, Joy Birch and Anna Dover, go missing at Thanksgiving. Local introvert, Alex Jones (Paul Dano), a man described as having “the mind of a ten year old,” is suspected, but with insufficient evidence the police are forced to release him. The father of one of the girls, Keller Dover (Hugh Jackman) decides to take matters into his own hands and pursue Jones himself, with the reluctant assistance of the second girl’s father, Franklin Birch (Terrence Howard). Continue reading

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