09 January 2017 · Comments Off on The Wages of Failure · Categories: The Sporting Life

Big-time sports leaves Gina Barreca scratching her head. A snippet:

. . . I feel about sports the way that Dorothy Parker felt about skiing: “Skiing is very difficult and none of my business.” Big sports is none of my business.

So you can imagine how I felt when I learned that the football coach at my university was recently awarded $3.4 million when it was decided he was no longer right for the job. My first thought was to compare this coach to Marla Maples, who married Donald Trump and gave birth to a Trump child. Ms. Maples was reportedly paid as much as $2 million when her relationship terminated. It seems to me that with a $3.4 million payout, the football coach didn’t get severance; he got alimony. And he didn’t even have to go through labor.

As my two or three regular readers may recall, I got fed up with the corruption of big-time football and stopped paying attention to it several years ago (and please note, I do not allege that the players are corrupt, no it’s not them, not at all).

I will tell you something, well, two somethings. After a very short while, you don’t miss it, and it’s amazing how many wonderful things you can find to do on a weekend afternoon when you’re not glued to the tube watching large men run into each other at high speed.

13 December 2016 · Comments Off on What It Was, Was Football · Categories: Mammon, The Sporting Life

No, this article is not about the NFL or the NCAA.

But it easily could be.

02 December 2016 · Comments Off on Dis Coarse Discourse · Categories: The Sporting Life

Bob Molinaro, sportswriter extraordinaire, contributes two example of dis coarse discourse in today’s column (emphasis in the original).

Groan-ups: Regarding Harbaugh, there’s a difference between a coach speaking out against perceived injustices to his team and a grown man throwing a public hissy fit. We’re learning that in today’s climate – sports and political – there’s nothing too embarrassing for the internet and Twitter audience. But there are still some of us who would like to hang on to the old-school principle that says leaders who preach discipline should practice it.

(snip)

Name game: My friend Mike added up all the Thanksgiving week men’s basketball tournaments that carried the grandiose title of “Classic.” The total came to 19. They included the Gildan Charleston Classic, Outrigger Hotels Rainbow Classic and High Point University Classic. Words just don’t mean what they used to.

Frankly, I doubt the coarseness of the discourse is any greater than ever. What’s changed is that there is no escape from the stupid, for there are no longer any filters either from or for it.

Aside:

You don’t have to be a sports fan to enjoy Molinaro’s writing. He often says in a sentence what others fail to say in a page. Follow the link and sign up for the RSS feed.

You’ll be glad you did.

26 November 2016 · Comments Off on Student Athletes · Categories: The Sporting Life

Yeah, right.

Sportswriter extraordinaire Bob Molinaro highlights the hypocrisy of big time college sports.

In the first 20 days of the season, Tom Izzo’s Michigan State basketball team will have traveled 13,000 miles for games, including trips to Honolulu, New York City, the Bahamas and Durham, N.C. What about this itinerary, most of it programmed by TV for the benefit of TV, suggests that Michigan State’s players are supposed to be students, too, not members of a money-making barnstorming troupe? Looking at Michigan State’s far-flung schedule – and those of other programs – how can anybody buy into the pretense that the college’s No. 1 goal is to provide the athletes with a proper education?

04 November 2016 · Comments Off on Football uber Alles · Categories: Personal Musings, The Sporting Life

Bob Molinaro, sportswriter extraordinaire:

Futurewatch: To satisfy its TV partners, the Big Ten will play Friday night football games starting next season. On a positive note, Michigan and Penn State have declared that they want no part of it. Presumably, they can reject the new TV plan because big-time programs are entitled to throw their weight around. In this case, more power to them. Weeknight games create logistical nightmares for fans; Friday games impact high school football. College football at its best is an all-day Saturday affair. Leave weeknight games to the lesser conferences and needier programs.

I am sick of football. I am no longer fascinated by large men running into each other.

My local rag covers high school games the way it used to cover college games, college games the way it used to cover the pros, and the pros like it’s the only game in town. Honest to Pete, during the wind-up of the regular baseball season when nary a football game had yet been played, stories about what might happen were a football game to be played overwhelmed the coverage of actual other games that had been played.

Full Disclosure:

When I was in high school, I was the statistician for my high school football team. After each home game, I would call my local rag, that same local rag, with the results of the game. I know what the coverage was like. I was there.

28 October 2016 · Comments Off on Like Sanduskies Through the Hourglass, These Are the Knaves of Our Lives · Categories: The Sporting Life

Penn State has to pay for protecting a pederast.

In case you wonder why I no longer pay attention to college football, follow the link for one example.

I can no longer ignore the corruption. Like Crabby Appleton, it is rotten to the core.

21 October 2016 · Comments Off on Sucklers at the Public Teat · Categories: Mammon, The Sporting Life

The National Football League.

17 September 2016 · Comments Off on Football uber Alles (Updated) · Categories: The Sporting Life

From Bob Molinaro, sports writer extraordinaire:

Never say never: The absolute certainty with which some in the media argue that Art Briles, the disgraced and insufficiently apologetic former Baylor coach, will never get another big-time head coaching job is laughable. This is college football we’re talking about.

Addendum, the Next Morning:

Rice wasn’t nice.

04 September 2016 · Comments Off on No Place To Hide · Categories: Geek Stuff, The Sporting Life

Read those permissions carefully, folks. If they think they can get away with it, they will try to get away with it.

The Golden State Warriors have been sued by a bunch of fans who claim the basketball team’s mobile app is eavesdropping on them.

The suit [PDF], filed with the Northern California District Court this week, alleges that the Android and iOS versions of the Golden State Warriors App can track and record audio from the handset’s microphone without user notification or permission.

According to the complaint, the app, developed by Signal360, can potentially wirelessly detect so-called beacons in stores to work where you’ve been shopping, and can potentially use the handset’s microphone to pick up signals within the audio of TV adverts, music and broadcasts that are inaudible to the human ear in order to serve them targeting advertisements.

29 August 2016 · Comments Off on There Are None So Blind as Those Who Will Not Look,
Sit with Colin Kaepernick Dept.
· Categories: "That Conversation about Race", Enforcers, The Sporting Life

At Psychology Today Blogs, Sam Louie looks at the kerfuffle about Colin Kaepernick’s refusal to stand for the national anthem at a blanking football game for Pete’s sake. A nugget:

Get out of Jail free cardJust like the racial divide facing our country, opinions on his behavior also broke along racial lines.

This from WTHR-TV Sportscaster Bob Kravitz in Indianapolis:

“I found it interesting, but completely understandable, that when I posed the Kaepernick question on Twitter, the responses broke along racial lines.

From whites: “If you don’t like America, go somewhere else. Leave. We’ll help you pack.”

As a white folk who has associated mostly with white folks but thank heavens not entirely because that’s how America works, I can state quite confidently that white folks don’t get it.

I try to get it, but I know I don’t not really but I promise to keep trying.

But, Christallmighty, as long as cops who kill black persons for being have an automatic “Get Out of Jail Free” card, there is no “liberty and justice for all” and the “American Dream” remains a farce and a con.

I’ll stop now, for all I have left is profanity.

22 June 2016 · Comments Off on Football uber Alles, the Prevent Defense Dept. · Categories: "That Conversation about Race", The Sporting Life

Get out of Jail free card

Play college football. Doing so gives you magical powers to prevent prosecution.

Aside:

It’s not that I think they should necessarily be prosecuted, but it’s Louisiana, folks. What do you think would be happening to them if they were just two random black kids from down the street?

14 June 2016 · Comments Off on Mulligan, Virginia: A Variation on the Stadium Scam · Categories: The Sporting Life, Too Stupid for Words

The small city of Buena Vista, out on the other side of the state, thought a new shiny municipal golf course would solve all its problems. It didn’t, so the city took a drop.

But the golf course struggled financially, and the recession made things worse for the city. Under a deal worked out in 2011, the city was allowed to make half payments for the next five years, with the unpaid balance to be added to the end of the bonds’ lifespan.

Then, in December 2014, the city council voted to stop making payments, which left ACA (ACA Financial Guaranty Corp–ed.) holding the bag.

Try just stop paying your taxes. By the by, ACA is suing.

Afterthought:

I have a suspicion that, until the editor got hold of it, the last sentence of the excerpt above included the word “golf” before the word “bag.” If it didn’t, it should have.

10 June 2016 · Comments Off on Just Good, Clean Fun · Categories: The Sporting Life

In an effort to curb the incendiary desires that might arise while ushering in a fourth Stanley Cup title, the City of Pittsburgh has opted to seize residents’ porch furniture.

Seriously.

Starting on Wednesday, city crews began taking couches, mattresses and other furniture from residents’ porches in hopes of removing “fuel” for post-game fires.

In the story, cited at Above the Law, the author points out that, among other things, this would seem to be an unlawful taking in violation of the Fifth Amendment to the Constitution of the United Sates.

07 June 2016 · Comments Off on Priorities at Public Pedagogical Institutions · Categories: The Sporting Life

Rat:  Did you know the highest paid state employee in 39 states is a football or basketball coach?  Goat:  And what kind of message does that send?  Rat:  That baseball coaches are getting screwed.  Goat:  I mean, what are we teaching our kids?  Rat:  Not to be a baseball coach?

31 May 2016 · Comments Off on The Super Stadium Scam · Categories: Mammon, The Sporting Life

The AP’s Paul Newberry calls out the NFL for its strategy of dangling Super Bowls in front of cities to get free stadiums. (Cities seem to be easy marks for the NFL’s con game.) A snippet:

“We found no evidence that local income or local employment were any higher in years when a city hosted a Super Bowl than other years,” he (Brad Humphries, WVU econ professor–ed.) said. “If it was generating the sort of economic impact that people say, I think we would’ve been able to find it.”

Nothing much has changed since then, but cities keep playing the game.

Where’s the ref to throw the flag on illegal use of hand-outs?