[Solved] compare and contrast football and basketball

I. Introduction

            This study is to scrutinize the differences and similarities between football and basketball. These two ball games are very well-known world widely and have been played over years already. To know these deeper, let’s try to look at how these two ball games are played. Football is a rugged outdoor game played on a rectangular field by two teams using an inflated ball. High school football, in general, follows the college rules. The differences between high school and college football, and to a lesser extent between college and professional football, stem partly from rule changes designed to protect the players from injury. Below the high school level, the rules are further modified to provide additional safeguards. On the other hand, basketball is a game in which players on two opposing teams try to score points by throwing a ball through a raised hoop called a basket. The team with the higher score wins. Basketball can be played outdoors and indoors in all year round, but it is mainly an indoor winter sport. In the United States, it is widely played by grade school, high school, college, church, business, and other amateur teams. There are also professional teams in most of the large cities of the United States, organized as the National Basketball Association (NBA).

II. Background

A. Football

            The origin of football-type games is unknown. Some scholars say the ancient Chinese were the first to play a game in which a ball was kicked. Other experts credit the ancient Egyptians or Greeks with developing the first kicking game. By the 11th or 12th century, the English played futebale—a no-holds-barred game in which two opposing groups each tried to kick a ball over the other side’s goal. During the 19th century, the English game developed into two separate games—soccer, a kicking game in which ball-carrying and passing are prohibited; and rugby, a ball-carrying, passing, and kicking game (Colls, 2007).

B. Basketball

            Unlike with football, the origin of basketball was defined. Basketball was invented in 1891 by Dr. James Naismith, an instructor at International YMCA Training School (now Springfield College).in Springfield, Massachusetts. The college’s athletic head, Dr. Luther Gulick, had noticed that in the winter months, between the football and baseball seasons, interest in physical training lagged among the students, who found calisthenics—the main activity—boring. Asked by Gulick to devise a new indoor activity, Naismith experimented with adaptations of existing games before he invented basketball. In the first demonstration match the players used a soccer ball and two peach baskets. Basketball was an instant success and was soon adopted by numerous YMCA’s, colleges, high schools, and other organizations. In some parts of the country the game was at first taken up by only girls (Harper, 2000).

III. Discussion

A. Equipments, Players, and Officials

            Football.  Football is played on a field 100 yards (91.4 m) long (120 yards [109.7 m] including the two end zones) and 53 1/3 yards (48.8 m) wide. White stripes, called yard lines, run across the field at 5-yard (4.6 m) intervals, giving the field a gridlike appearance that has led to its being called a gridiron. Two inbounds lines, each made up of a series of short stripes called hash marks, mark off the main playing area. The ball must be between the inbounds lines each time it is put into play. Between the goal line and the end line at either end of the field is an end zone 10 yards deep (Colls, 2007).  The goalposts are centered on the end line. The professional goal is wishbone-shaped structure with two poles, called uprights, connected by a crossbar that is 18 ½ feet long. The uprights which begin at the crossbar extend a minimum of 30 feet above the crossbar. A single pole centered under the crossbar is set behind the end line and curves forward to bring the crossbar above the end line. The traditional college goal consists of two poles set 23 1/3 feet apart, connected by a crossbar 10 above the ground. The two poles extend to 10 or more feet beyond the crossbar. Many colleges, however, use a professional type of goal built to college dimensions (Colls, 2007).

            In addition, a football team is ordinarily consists of between 20 and 60 players. Each team is allowed to have 11 players on the field at any given time during the game. Liberal substitution rules permit a team to use a two-platoon system— one group of players for offense (when the team is in possession of the ball) and a second group for defense (Colls, 2007).

            Moreover, the play is supervised by four to seven officials. Both college and professional games use a referee, an umpire, a linesman, and a line judge. A back judge, a side judge, a field judge are optional in college football, but required in the professional game. Each official is responsible primarily for watching plays from a certain area of the field. In addition, the referee supervises the other officials and has overall control of the game (Colls, 2007).

B. Basketball

            A basketball court is rectangular, with maximum dimensions of 50 feet by 94 feet or, for high school, 84 feet. The floor is usually wooden. Ten feet above the floor at each end of the court is a mounted basket—a metal hoop 18 inches in diameter, with attached open cord net. Each basket juts out from a vertical surface, made of glass, plastic, or wood, called a backboard. The ball is round and inflated with air. It is nine inches in diameter and weighs 20 to 22 ounces. A center line divides the court. The half of the court with a team’s own basket is known as the frontcourt. (A team’s own basket, unlike the goal in other sports, is the one it is shoots at rather than the one it defends). The other half, where the opposing team’s basket is located, is known as the backcourt (Fox, 2004).

            A team consists of five players—two guards, two forwards, and a center. The guards tend to play in the middle of the court, the center—usually the tallest player—near the baskets, the forwards nears the end lines. Although a player with a special skill may be utilized more in some particular offensive or defensive aspect of the game, all the team member try to keep them from scoring. Unless disqualified (as explained later), a player replaced by a substitute may return to the game (Harper, 2000).

            In amateur basketball, one referee and one or two umpires arte the officials who rule on baskets, fouls, violations, penalties, and other matters. The referee has more authority that the umpire. In professional play there are two officials; both are called referees but one is senior in authority. Assisting the officials are timers and scorekeepers (Harper, 2000).

IV. Conclusion

            In conclusion, football and basketball are most favorites of all people. These games have a lot of common and differences in how to play it and its equipment, players and officials however these two ball games have defensive players who commit an unintentional or nonflagrant personal foul, in most situations the opposing team gets possession of the ball.


Colls, Robert (2007). The Ball Is Round: A Global History of Football. History Today, Vol. 57.
Fox, R.A. (2004). Basketball: the Complete Handbook of Individual Skills, pp. 123-126 (Prentice Hall). ]
Harper, Timothy (2000). Best Pickup-Basketball Player in America: The Man Any True Basketball Devotee Wants to Play with or Against. The Atlantic Monthly, Vol. 285.


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