Our LS 566 group spent the weekend trying to find a controlled vocabulary specifically for football (instead of using something like LCSH or creating our own). We have so far been unsuccessful (so if anyone has suggestions, I’d love to hear them).  The problems that I kept running into are ones that libraries always struggle with, and which I’ve heard discussed multiple times in SLIS courses. Primarily:

Cost – creating and maintaining a controlled vocabulary takes time, expertise, equipment, and information, which can get pretty expensive. For this reason, a majority of the useful-looking controlled vocabularies I found (several are listed on Taxonomy Warehouse – they are sports-specific ones, though not football-focused) are only available to paying customers. [This gave me the idea of checking UA’s library databases, though it didn’t seem like something we were particularly likely to have.]

Variants in natural language – what Americans call football is not the same sport that most of the world knows as football. My teammate was given a link to a controlled vocabulary that seems to be about soccer. Many of my search hits also presented this problem, making me have to search “American football” instead.