22 May 2015 · Comments Off on Patriot Games · Categories: The Sporting Life

Bob Molinaro, sportswriter extraordinaire, has a question:

With the abrupt decline in Tom Brady’s popularity, many people hope Roger Goodell is tough on the Patriots quarterback during the appeal process. When you think about it, though, won’t any interrogation of Brady have to consist mostly of soft-ball questions?

Much more Molinaro at the link.

19 May 2015 · Comments Off on Appearances Matter. They Also Lie. · Categories: The Sporting Life

Colbert I. King doesn’t get the fascination with “clean cut”:

Take New England Patriots football player Tom Brady. He’s tied with a chain to those two little words. refers to Brady as a “dimpled, clean-cut quarterback.” Seattle Times writer Larry Stone snarks of Brady: “too handsome, too clean-cut, too aw-shucks.” Sky News mentions the “clean-cut brand of America’s sporting idol ‘Tom Terrific.’ “

Oh, I get why a guy with a clean-shaven face might be called clean-cut. And surely short hair, neatly combed, might fit that description.

What I don’t understand is why it should be assumed that because someone has a neat appearance, is well-groomed and has fresh breath, he is somehow beyond breaking the rules or getting into trouble.

That phrase, “clean cut,” also cropped up in this little item several years ago.

14 May 2015 · Comments Off on What It Was, Was Football · Categories: The Sporting Life

Reg Henry is not impressed by the sanctions levied by the NFL over “deflategate.”

This was all about restoring a semblance of integrity to the league. Unfortunately, it is a bit of challenge, given that the league has been plagued by an assortment of wife-beaters and other criminal miscreants in its ranks. When the NFL stands up for integrity, it is like Madam Flossie’s Palace of Fun coming out for chastity.

Do follow the link.


I am so done with big-time football. It makes the WWE look like the Grecian Olympic Games. At least the WWE has stopped pretending . . . .

12 May 2015 · Comments Off on Football uber Alles · Categories: The Sporting Life

Der Spiegel interviews Patrick Venzke, a German who played in the NFL before returning to Europe to play in the European league. Here’s a bit, in which he responds to questions about Chris Borland, who retired from the NFL after two seasons because of concerns over long-term damage to his health from playing.

Venzke: It’s such a courageous decision. He’ll be mocked because NFL players don’t usually talk about their problems. They sweep them under the carpet.


You play for the glory, the fame, the status. But if you win the Super Bowl and get inaugurated into the Hall of Fame only to forget you were a footballer by the time you’re 60 because you have Alzheimer’s, it’s just not worth it. Players still put up with broken bones, but not with a destroyed brain.

07 May 2015 · Comments Off on Oh, Balls! · Categories: The Sporting Life

In reference to “Deflategate,” the father of Boston Patriots quarterback Tom Brady says he has no doubts about his son’s integrity.

Neither do I.

24 April 2015 · Comments Off on Football uber Alles · Categories: The Sporting Life

Sportswriter extraordinaire Bob Molinaro cuts to the quick:

The just-released NFL schedule reveals that the Eagles play three of their first four on the road, in part to avoid a conflict with Pope Francis, who will be saying an outdoor mass on Sunday, Sept. 27, in front of the Philadelphia Museum of Art. For one day, at least, one major religion has elected not to compete against another.

20 April 2015 · Comments Off on Football uber Alles · Categories: The Sporting Life

In the Sacramento Bee, Andy Furillo argues that UC-Davis needs to forego its “inviolate principles” of athletic competition, at least as regards to Big-Time Football. As near as I can make out his argument, it’s this:

19 April 2015 · Comments Off on Competition · Categories: The Sporting Life

A most unfortunately named game.

05 April 2015 · Comments Off on Hope · Categories: The Sporting Life

Opening Day.

But an alloyed hope: As the NCAA basketball circus draws to an end and big league baseball starts up, my local rag yesterday chose to remind everyone of football uber alles by covering the top half of the front page of the sports section, extending all the way to the fold, with a picture of a local college football player.

03 April 2015 · Comments Off on Not Bowled Over · Categories: The Sporting Life

Bob Molinaro is underwhelmed by the prospect of yet more college football bowl games. A snippet:

In any case, bowl invitations shrink in significance – don’t you think? – when they’re handed out to two-thirds of the FBS schools, opening the door to even more 6-6 teams. Then they become like youth participation trophies.

Oh, goody-good, more big-time football games I can choose not to watch.

02 April 2015 · Comments Off on Yet Another Reason I’m Fed Up with Big Time Sports · Categories: The Sporting Life

NCAA’s trading sex for sign-ups.

Perhaps the most insidious use of female enticement is the use of “hostesses” to show prospects around campus. Often these women’s duties go far beyond answering questions about the dining halls. Several former hostesses have said it was understood they were to do whatever it took to convince the recruit the school was right for him. Several have later said they were raped.

The role of sex in recruiting isn’t a secret. In 2013, former Oklahoma State defensive back Chris Wright told Sports Illustrated that an assistant coach told him, “You didn’t do your job” after learning that a recruit Wright was hosting hadn’t had sex the night before.

22 March 2015 · Comments Off on Twits on Twitter · Categories: The Sporting Life

Twits who prove that men are pigs.

04 March 2015 · Comments Off on Twits on Twitter · Categories: The Sporting Life

Sports twits.

Kudos to Curt Schilling for ensuring that these snivelling twits got a comeuppance.

21 February 2015 · Comments Off on Faster Ball · Categories: The Sporting Life

It’s about time.

Major League Baseball on Friday announced significant rules changes intended to speed up the pace of the game, moves that will revamp the instant-replay process and address the steady increase in average game time.

The changes, announced jointly by MLB and the Major League Baseball Players Association, will require hitters to keep one foot in the batter’s box, create a time limit for breaks between innings and streamline the process of challenging a call on the field. MLB, the MLBPA and the World Umpires Association have agreed on the changes, which will begin in spring training, and they will evaluate the results after the season.

My brother has long thought that the “one foot in the box” rule would be the easiest way to speed up the game in the Bigs; he tells me the rule is common in the Minors. He will be surprised, though, to see that a limit is being placed on commercial breaks time between innings.

20 February 2015 · Comments Off on A Glimmer of Hope · Categories: The Sporting Life

Pitchers and catchers report.

19 February 2015 · Comments Off on A Little Off the Top · Categories: The Sporting Life

This has to be one of the more bizarre brouhahas in baseball:

Wrigley Field and Wrigley Field Rooftops

A federal judge on Thursday denied a request from rooftop clubs overlooking Wrigley Field to temporarily halt installation of signs they say will block their view and violate a contract they have with the Chicago Cubs.

U.S. District Judge Virginia Kendall ruled that the “vague possibility” that installing the signs could affect rooftop businesses wasn’t enough to grant a temporary restraining order. The ruling means the Cubs will avoid a setback as they renovate the historic ballpark.

13 February 2015 · Comments Off on A League that They Own · Categories: The Sporting Life

Bob Molinaro, sportswriter extraordinaire, sums up the Little League kerfuffle:

Now the whistleblower who tipped off authorities that the Jackie Robinson West Little League team used ineligible players is receiving nasty voicemails, emails and even death threats, requiring a police car to be parked in front of his home. This is totally unsurprising and the product of adults poisoning children’s games with their warped, infantile perspective of what’s important. Maybe, too, it’s a result of Little League International using kids as pawns in an overly commercial venture.

05 February 2015 · Comments Off on NFL: The “Non-Profit” Football League · Categories: The Sporting Life

01 February 2015 · Comments Off on The Kick-Out · Categories: The Sporting Life

Goat:  What are you so happy about?  Rat:  My football team just won.  Goat:  Do you own the team?  Rat:  No, some rich guy does.  Goat:  Do you know someone on the team?  Rat:  Not personally.  Goat:  Do you help them with their strategy?  Rat:  No.  Goat:  Do they give you something if they win?  Rat:  No.  Goat:  No money, no gifts, no plaque?  Rat:  No, nothing.  Goat:  So you're cheering because one rich guy's company beat another rich guy's company?  Rat throws Goat out of the Super Bowl Party.

Click for a larger image.