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Monday, February 20, 2006

Love ya, Abe

It's President's Day morning and I'm thinking about sports and Abraham Lincoln. I figured I might as well write some of it down, since President's Day only happens once per year.

1. Nate Robinson has taken his act further than I ever thought possible. I used to coach high school football in Seattle and our team played against Nate. I watched him score two touchdowns in his first three touches one time. Another time I saw him throw down a flying tomahawk dunk over two kids in a basketball game. He had freaky talent, but seemed way too small to play football at the next level (let alone basketball). So what does Nate do? He starts on the Husky football team as a true freshman, then walks on to the basketball team and leads the Washington men to the NCAA tourney twice (once as a number one seed). Then he gets drafted and plays for the Knicks, averages better than 8 ppg as a rookie, and wins the slam dunk contest with a crazy dunk over Spud Webb. Way to go Nate!

2. How good is the Washington Husky men's basketball team? I asked this question a couple months back and still don't know. We might not know until March madness begins.

3. Shaun Alexander is a great back. If the Seahawks don't re-sign him, their TD production will be cut by at least one-third, which is the only stat that should really matter to management as they consider whether or not to re-sign the MVP. There's no reason Shaun can't find the endzone 16-20 times per year for the next four years. Pay him accordingly.

4. Is anybody excited about the World Baseball Classic? I'm not hearing anybody talk about it. Maybe it's because I don't talk to the right people. Or maybe people in this country don't really care about international competition, which seems to be a sideshow to the Superbowl, March madness, and the World Series.

5. Three greatest presidents of all-time: Abe Lincoln, Ronald Reagan, and Teddy Roosevelt.

6. Speaking of international competition, I've been watching the Olympics quite a bit. I love that the games are progressing (if you haven't seen Snowboardcross, you're missing out) while holding onto the oldies but goodies (ski jumping and bobsled). I still think figure skating is like a car wreck on the side of the freeway, painful to watch but impossible to keep your eyes off.

7. You've got the first pick in your fantasy baseball league. Do you take Pujols or A-Rod? Production wise, it's a wash. Take A-Rod because third basemen are tougher to come by.
Zoom on...

Sunday, February 05, 2006

Super-Frustration

A dropped pass. A phantom pass interference call. More dropped passes. TD Roethlisberger? Pathetic clock management. Another drop. A bogus holding call. And to top it all off, an illegal block call on a guy making a tackle...

It's one thing when you go into a game, get your teeth kicked in by a better opponent, and lose. It's another thing entirely when you shoot yourself in the foot with mental mistakes, only to be shot in the other foot by an officiating crew who called phantom penalties against 300-pound men in dark blue uniforms. (Were those flags or Terrible Towels the refs were throwing around?) It's one thing to lose when the other guys' quarterback outplays you and shreds your defense. It's another thing entirely when their guy winds up with a QB rating of 22.6 and still walks home with the hardware, all because your guys struggle to haul in key passes in the biggest game of their careers.

There's no other way to slice it. Superbowl XL was downright painful for Hawks fans from Missoula to Fairbanks, Bellevue to Bend.

Give the Steelers some credit. They made just enough big plays to win and earn the Bus a well-deserved NFL championship. And Cowher, as I predicted 3 weeks ago, called a brilliant trick-play that sealed the deal for the yellow and black.

Other than that, Seattle outplayed Pittsburgh in a game you wish came with a do-over clause, a rewind button you could push to go back to 6:15 pm eastern time. But you can't. And the best you can do is hope for another shot at the big game, which might not happen for another 30 years.
Zoom on...