WWIR: Wednesday’s Weekend in Review
So I’m not getting to this until almost the end of the day, but hey, I remembered it was Wednesday. Aren’t y’all proud?! I have so much to tell y’all. Some of it you may already know, but oh well.
- Let’s start with the McLeod West High School football team in Brownton, Minnesota. I’m an avid reader of Rick Reilly’s columns. He used to write the back page in Sports Illustrated, but now he writes for ESPN the Magazine. Last week’s column was about McLeod West and their football team that consists of 19 players. Turns out this is a result of two schools being merged into one and the parents of the players from the two schools not wanting their kids to play on the same team with each other. If ever a group of people needed an intervention, I think it’s these two groups of parents. Someone needs to sit them all down and say, “it’s not all about YOU.” It’s a really fascinating story about a team that has 2 games left on their schedule and have a current record of 4-2. Incidentally, this is also the last season that MWHS will field a football team thanks to the moms and dads who can’t get over themselves and let their kids have a childhood.
- Let’s stay on the Rick Reilly subject and go on to his column from this week. It’s about John Lynch, currently out of a job but last employeed on the 53 man roster of the Denver Broncos. (I’m using selective memory on that team he played for in the preseason.) The story is all there. It’s definitely a bleeding heart story about how football players have it rough, but if you push all the athlete freebies out of the way, you’ll see the heart of the story, which is that John Lynch wants nothing more than to just play football. John is one of my favorites. Always has been, always will be. He’s one of the last to play for Tampa Bay in the awful orange uniforms. As I watch players start to retire from the game, I think about the list of guys who I will actually shed a tear for when they’ve moved on with their life. John is one of them. He’s the last of a dying breed…the guys who play the game for the love of the game. I hope that some team will call him and ask him to play for them because I miss seeing him out there on Sundays, but most of all I hope that whatever ends up being his final decision on whether to retire or stay available, it is a decision that makes him happy.
- Saturday morning I woke up earlier than I wanted to. My landlords called the other week to tell me that they were going to be doing some landscaping in the front postage stamp yard. One decision they’d made was to remove the tree out there. It was a lovely tree. It provided shade for my bedroom since my bedroom fronts the entire second story of the house. What I didn’t realize was how MUCH shade it provided. I woke up Saturday morning early because the sun was shining rather brightly through the blinds since there was no tree to shield it. Guess it’s time to look into the curtain idea. I hadn’t needed curtains since I had blinds and the tree. Oh well, but the front yard does look a bit better without it. Much more open and fresh.
- Speaking of Saturday, I attended the Catholic University Cardinals football game on Saturday afternoon. Now, you have to remember that my point of reference for attending football games is Tampa Stadium (old and new…I know the new is Raymond James, but it’ll always be Tampa Stadium to me.), the RCA Dome, and Bryant-Denny Stadium. All of those stadiums hold (or held) 10s of thousands of people in them. Beyond that the next smallest stadium I’ve been in is my high school stadium. Catholic University is a Division-III school. Cardinal Stadium seats 3500 and there’s even a track around it. It definitely took me back, but let me tell you the refs in Division III are no better than the ones in Division I. Catholic played SUNY Maritime on Saturday and won 46-13. The first play from scrimmage was a 60 yard touchdown pass. I was incredibly impressed, and I had a great time; however, I did discover how deep my dependence is on jumbotrons and instant replay. There were a couple of times I would have liked to see a play a second time. Additionally, I learned from one T-shirt that I saw on several Catholic University students that “it is no sin to win.” Good to know.
- I’ll take the T-shirt segue and move on to my next topic, which takes us to my friend Jessica’s blog. You see Jessica is an avid Fantasy Football player. Against her better judgment, primarily because she hates him almost as much as I do, she selected Tom Brady in the first round of the draft in one of her leagues. As those of us who follow the NFL know, Tom Brady will no longer be suiting up this season. Jessica, being certain that many people out there share her frustration with this fact, decided to take action by creating a t-shirt that she is selling on Cafe Press in the hopes of recouping her league entrance fee. If you or anyone you know has suffered many, many fantasy points because of Tom Brady’s season ending injury, hop on over to Jessica’s Store and pick yourself up an appropriately designed with inappropriate message t-shirt. I’m thinking of buying one just for the heck of it. Also, note that the first t-shirt style offering is a maternity t-shirt. 🙂
- Hmm…How to move on from there? Aww, yes. Jessica went to the Catholic game with me, then came back to my house to watch the remainder of the Alabama/Kentucky game. Ok…and we’re back. So, if any of y’all caught the Alabama/Kentucky game on Saturday afternoon you were treated to the presentation of a bunch of lucky stiffs. Not only was Bama lucky to come away from that game with a win, they were lucky to keep their #2 ranking in the AP poll. People always criticize me for saying “yeah they looked great, but…” because they think I should be happy with the win, period. Well sorry, I’m not programmed that way. If these same players are the ones who played Clemson and Georgia, then we should not have beaten Kentucky by only 3 points. Granted if Glen Coffee hadn’t fumbled on the 3 yard line and Leigh Tiffin had made the two field goals he missed, we could have easily won by a score of 30-14. I vote for never letting John Parker Wilson receive the AT&T player of the week award. It just went straight to his head. (Side Note: I’ve started compiling a list of teams I’m glad we don’t have to play during the regular season this year. Make no mistake Vanderbilt is at the top of that list as the thought crossed my mind today that Vandy could make the SEC Champ game! GO DORES!) I have to keep reminding myself that absent a few freshmen and Terrence “Mount” Cody, this is the same team that lost to Louisiana-Monroe last year. Last season I wasn’t on the Bama gravy train. I was cautiously optimistic because it was Coach Saban’s first season, and I wanted to see what he could do before I joined up. I didn’t think that hiring this particular coach was the remedy for all our problems. Football just doesn’t work that way. Now, I can say without reservation that I’m slowly climbing that ladder. Right now, I’m drinking the Nick Saban kool-aid where you are proud of the kids for winning the game and not panicking when Kentucky closed the gap in the score, but there are SO MANY things that can be worked on, not the least of which is their ability to continue playing with the intensity we saw in the Clemson game and the first half of the Georgia game. Hopefully, they’ll take this bye week to figure those things out unlike the Colts seemed to do.
- HA HA! How’d you like that transition? Yes, my sweet, precious, could drive a train through their defense, can’t get their timing down on offense, Colts played the Houston Texans on Sunday afternoon. I wanted desperately to see them come off the bye week ready to rock it all the way to the playoffs, and for the first ten minutes of the game, you’d have thought they were doing just that. Then Sage Rosenfels…huh?…what?…wait, who?…yeah you heard me right, came out after a few unsuccessful drives for the Texans and proceeded to knock right through our defense and tie the score at 10 a piece. I didn’t really panic at that point, I just said ok, it’s like we’re back to the beginning of the game and the score is 0-0. That philosophy seemed to work for the Texans as they proceeded to rack up a score of 27-10 by the time there was only eight minutes left IN THE ENTIRE GAME. At this very moment, I gave up. I’m not sure I’ve ever truly given up on my Colts. I’ve thought about it sure, but I’m not sure I’ve ever actually pulled the trigger on that one. But at that moment, I was accepting defeat not only in this game but of the entire season. I was deciding right then and there that there would be no playoffs this season, and I was fine with that. I’d decided I’d rather know in week 5 that we’re not going to the playoffs than to get to the playoffs and do what we usually do in them. And then, Tom Santi happened and Gary Brackett happened and Robert (Alabama A&M) Mathis happened and Reggie Wayne happened and finally, mercifully Melvin Bullitt happened. I’ve always wondered how players do it. When the deficit they face seems so out of reach, how do they run back out on that field for that next drive, that next play? And still they do it. In the amount of time that it takes to pop a bag of microwave popcorn, the Colts mounted the biggest come from behind victory in NFL history. Seriously, the Colts made the score 27-17 with 4:04 left on the clock. I was dumbfounded. I watched the last 30 minutes of NFL Replay last night just to see how it unfolded. I also wanted to see if Reggie Wayne did in fact score that final touchdown. I never got a slowed down angle of the catch that secured it for me, but the refs saw what they saw even in the booth review. Plus, it was on 1st down. Give Peyton Manning two more downs and he’d get another one in there easily. The thing on that TD pass that got me was how early Peyton threw the ball. I know that is textbook Peyton, but I mean Reggie hadn’t even crossed the goal line when Peyton threw that ball. He still amazes me even now. Now, if we could just play like we played in those last 7 minutes for the other 53 minutes of the game, I could stop counting the number of years I’ve lost off my life this season.
Well there you have it…issue #2 of WWIR. Yeah it was rather sports-filled, but hey…that IS how I’m programmed.