1/21-1/26

January 26, 2009

1/21/09

Dan Daly of the DC Times passed along what I consider to take the prize (to date) of the most unusual game related sports injury.

Clint Walker (6-6), a member of the 1944 Cleveland NFL team, fractured his skull while trying to punt during practice.

The AP described it: “As he tossed the ball in the air with the intention of meeting it with his foot as it came down, a teammate called to him. Instead of turning his head, Clint bent it downward. His knee cracked him in the forehead.”

This was of course during WW II when players weren’t available and several teams were forced to amalgamate. The Chicago Cardinals and the Pittsburgh Steelers did this and were as the Chic-Pitts. Some of the press changed that to be the “Car-Pitts” or more correctly the “Carpets” because everybody was walking all over them.

1/22/09

OBAMA’S SPORTS

Our President has made playing pick-up basketball in vogue and as we’ve seen before, as soon as a President hints that he’d like to do something a lot of volunteers show up to help him.

Perhaps he can wonder why the coach of the U. of Tennessee men’s basketball team, Bruce Pearl- in his FOURTH year, with a 77-24 Tennessee record, and has never gone beyond the “Sweet Sixteen”- earns $2.3 Million + a retention bonus of $1.5 Million (a retention bonus is like a signing bonus) while Pat Summitt, in her 35th year, won eight National Championships, graduated 100% of her players who have completed their eligibility, is closing in on 1,000 victories and still makes less than a half of what Pearl makes.

I wonder how quickly someone would jump up to point out the men’s basketball brings in more revenue to the school.

That prompts the question- why is that?  

1/23/09

JUST AN ODD COINCIDENCE

Barry Bonds was a seven time MLB-MVP. Roger Clemens was a seven time Cy Young Award winner. These are two things that make me go- HMMM!

When baseball reopened the store after the ’94 strike, both the owners and the union poo-bahs wanted everything (profits) to get going. Even though performance enhancers were outlawed three years earlier, that whole group turned a blind eye to the use-situation.

Now the same people who profited are hopping up and down with over-righteous indignation and say nothing when a small 2B, Justin Pedroia wins the AL-MVP. They’re too busy treating a dislocated shoulder suffered by patting themselves on the back.

As far as we fans are concerned, if there is the slightest indication that things are improving (like hearing about tougher drug-testing) we’ll be back. We all yearn for the simpler, less complicated, more truthful athletic days.

Now, if banks could be fixed as easily, it’d be good.

ORLANDO’S RANKING

The Magic has a 33-8 record and had an amazing game with 23 three-pointers against Sacramento. But, where did that rank, the following morning, on the ESPN SportsCenter? 16th that’s where!

ESPN has turned into the Kobe and LeBron Show with occasional guest appearances by the Celtics and Eva Longoria.

1/24/09

UNFRIENDLY NEIGHBORS

We’ve heard all the word and have seen all the actions of Jets fans and Giants Fans when they talk to each other about their teams who play in the same stadium with their own team’s decals on the walls when depending who is using the field that day. It can be pretty unsettling at times (allow me to digress for a minute or two:- the PSL’s (Personal Seat Licenses) paid by season ticket holders are supposed to let them have 1st crack at tickets for non-athletic events held at the stadium. But which team’s PSL holders will have 1st choice?.

This problem doesn’t hold a candle to the storm that’s rising over the 49’ers and Raiders both wanting Scott Linehan to be the offensive coordinator. The job was first offered by the Niners but Linehan turned them down saying that uprooting his family was too much of a problem. Here’s where it gets interesting- Linehan is now considering taking the same job with Tom Cable and the, 36-mile away, Oakland Raiders. Can you imagine how wide Mike Singletary’s eyes will grow if Linehane goes there.

I haven’t seen this much consternation since Bill Walsh was lured away from the Chicago Bears by the SF 49’ers.

UNSURE CELEBRATION

I’M not saying the Arizona Cardinals didn’t know how to celebrate when they won the NFL-NFC title for the 1st time since 1947 while playing in Chicago- wait, yes I am, about some of them anyway.

Nancy Gay wrote in the SF Chronicle: “Safety Adrian, Wilson who has been with the Cardinals longer tan any other player, sat quietly on his team’s bench when the game ended, tears streaming down his face. His teammates began piling on top of each other in celebration and Wilson could only watch.

‘I didn’t know what to do.’ He confessed.”

MANNY-GATE

Agent Scott Boras who reps Manny Ramirez and the brass with the LA Dodgers have drawn a line in the sand that both parties refuse to cross.

Boras wants a multi-year, multi million dollar deal for Manny while the Dodgers have offered a staggering (at least to me) $45million for two-years.

Both sides feel a responsibility here. The Dodgers want fiscal responsibility (as if offering $45 million is responsible) and Boras wants a responsibility to his client that only more than 3-years $90 million will ease.

This whole thing is not irresponsible it’s ridiculous.

1/25/09

EROSION

I’m being worn down by all of the ink that’s being used to say the Arizona Cardinals don’t have a chance of winning this year’s Super Bowl. But, one thing I’m realizing is that all of this media “chest bumping” is making a case to increase the fan’s interest in rooting for the underdog that goes back a looong way.

As of now, I’m still behind the Steelers; not because it’s a favorite-underdog thing but is because Pittsburgh is more of an East team as opposed to the Western Cardinals.

I see the final score to be 28-10 in favor of the Steelers.

Now, Norman Chad on the other hand has been rooting for the Cardinals for some time and is overjoyed they’re going to the Super Bowl.

He has said very often that “nobody beats the Cardinals at home-nobody.”

“The University of Phoenix is like Lambeau Field with Palm Trees. When the roof is open, the combination of the desert heat and the half-filled stands stifles visiting teams. When the roof is closed the stench of the heavy cologne from the half-filled stands, it’s an Old Spice crowd, stifles visiting teams.

1/26/09

POLITICAL ?

A lot of the media is crowing about how Barack Obama’s ascension to the Presidency inspired Tiger Woods to make his 1st political statement. How-evah, when Woods appeared at the Lincoln Memorial he praised our Armed Forces and mentioned his father but NEVER mentioned Obama’s name. Political-I don’t think so.

NFL- HALL OF FAME

Jerry Greene suggested in the Orlando Sentinel that Steve and Ed Sabol belong in the NFL-HOF for the way they’ve detailed every NFL season since Ed (the 92-year old father of Steve) got filming rights for the 1962 NFK Championship game. I agree with Steve that the late, golden-voiced John Facenda belongs there also. It was Facenda who sent chills up my back when he recited the Steve Sabol written poem, “The Autumn Wind,” about the Oakland Raiders. It went:

The Autumn wind is as Rider

Pillaging just for fun

He’ll knock you around and upside down

And laugh when he’s conquered an won.

HOO-BOY, I got chills just remembering that poem; never mind hearing the contrabass

tuba playing the accompanying scary music.

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