LONGSHOTS: Spring cleaning of the sports mind a little early
by Dave Long
Time to clear out the attic of sports things that are rambling around collecting dust.
Is it me or did Jeff Jagodzinski let more folks down besides the players when he elected to walk out on the football program by interviewing for the Jets head coaching job against the wishes of the BC brass? What about his coaches, like local lad Ryan Day, who could’ve been left out in the cold with a young family in tow? Seems to me he’s got a responsibility to them as well as the players, especially since he did it relatively late in the job search process.
Somebody sent me these jokes, which I’ll send out for my friend the Labor Commissioner George Copadis, who is the biggest Dallas Cowboy fan north of, well, Dallas. What do the Dallas Cowboys and a possum have in common? They both play dead at home and get killed on the road. What do you call 47 millionaires around a TV watching the Super Bowl? The Dallas Cowboys.
I love John Smoltz. Smart, tough and clutch. But he’s 41 and coming off an injury. And with Brad Penny coming off an injury- filled year and Tim Wakefield having gone to high school with Smoky Joe Wood, there are too many old bucks on the staff. Throw in Rocco Baldelli and Josh Bard and there are too many injury and health risks with the recent signings for my liking.
Thumbs up to news that Ken Burns is working on a new inning for his epic Baseball series that first ran on PBS in (yikes, say it ain’t so) in 1994. The 10th inning will air in spring of 2010 along with a re-run of the first nine innings and will cover what’s happened in baseball since the original series aired.
Can’t wait to see the steroids part of the story.
Mike Shanahan is the Tony LaRussa of football — over-rated and living on the two Super Bowls won last century as he’s an ohfer since John Elway left the building.
Danny please, I’m begging you don’t sign Stephan Marbury. I know KG told the New York media he’s fine with Steph, but I want to hear what he says behind closed doors on that one. Spend what limited amount of the salary cap exemption you have on the big you really need to provide behind KG and Perk.
Here’s the only bigs out there the C’s have cap space to get: Joe Smith, Yoakim Noah and Jeff Foster of Indiana. Foster is the best but very unlikely, Smith would cost a first pick I think (do it) and Noah is doubtful unless the Bulls are so disappointed they’re willing to cut their losses. Noah intrigues me the most because his odd game — block shots, run the floor, put backs — game, makes him one of those guys who are much better as a cog on a good team than as a 35-minute guy on a group like Chicago. A first pick, Big Baby and what?
The series between Saint A and SNHU in basketball ain’t what it used to be.
Saw my first full Millrats game on Sunday and I’ll admit I was surprised at the talent level. There were two blocks and two dunks in traffic in that one that the SNHU field house has never seen the likes of.
For those of us who played with him and against him, the news of the death of former NHC star Keith Elwood following a heart attack after playing hoops in New Jersey just before Christmas was a jolt. He scored a hair under 2,000 points in the pre-three- point shot days. He was a really good player, a great guy and will be missed.
In case you’re interested, I picked the Ravens to win the Super Bowl. And for me that’s saying a lot, because I have a hard time rooting for or picking a team with uniforms I absolutely hate. But I love their defense, and as they say in the movies, love conquers all.
Think the Patriots can get two first-round picks for Matt Cassel? Probably not, but where would the Vikings be right now if they had a quarterback who could play? Probably still playing. If they use their top pick to get a QB this year, most likely they wait two years before he’s ready. So is the other first worth getting there two years faster while the talent is ready to contend? To me it is.
If you’re still skeptical, look how the picture changed in Miami after they got Chad Pennington.
And speaking of Miami, if we go below the Tarrier line to 1970 when the Dolphins surrendered their first pick for a new coach, there was a loud cry of “you can’t do that because first picks are too valuable.” With the aid of 20-20 hindsight, who came out on top when Miami got Don Shula in return for a third-down back named Don McCauley who the Colts took? Four trips to the Super Bowl, two titles and the only undefeated season says Miami.
Here’s why Oklahoma has lost three out of four times in the BCS title game. While it is hard to get to their four times in nine years as Bob Stoops has done, I’ll bet if there was a playoff system Oklahoma rarely gets out of the first round. The system encourages bullies to run it up whenever they can in the regular season and like most bullies, when Oklahoma comes up against someone their own size they get their lunch handed to them, like vs. Florida in losing their fifth straight BCS bowl game.
Hey, Bob Ryan, talk all you want about strength of schedule, but how many times have you actually seen Utah play? They’re 13-0 and spanked Alabama in the Sugar Bowl, who was undefeated until December while playing in the SEC and ranked number one for five weeks. And even if they were laying down, you can’t blame Utah for that. So here’s my question: if there’s no college basketball tournament back in the day and Lew Alcindor’s dominant UCLA teams were in the WAC instead of the PAC 8, would you have said they didn’t deserve to be voted number one? How about when Indiana State sat atop the polls mainly because of you know who and didn’t play anyone? They lost that number-one ranking only when Michigan State beat them in the final. Until somebody beats Utah, I say they’re in the argument even if I think Florida would beat them head to head.
Finally, admit it: after what happened in last year’s Super Bowl, you liked seeing the Giants go out early in the tawnament when they lost to Philly Sunday. Especially since many in the New York media had them winning two in a row!
Dave Long can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. He hosts the Absolute Sports Experience at Billy’s Sports Bar in Manchester each Saturday from 10 a.m. to noon that is broadcast live on WGAM – The Game, 1250-AM Manchester, 900-AM Nashua.