Two weeks have gone by and much has happened in the world. I know this, I’m terrified of the elections in November. So much so, that I may even ask my boss if I can live in Canada or Jamaica for the next four years. I’m also terrified of the generation I’m in…if we’re to rely on the mid-20s and younger being our security blankets in the future, we are screwed. I digress……
- RIP to the San Antonio Spurs. It was one helluva run by Tim Duncan, Manu Ginobli, Tony Parker and crew. But, this team is OLD, and they played old in their series loss to the Oklahoma City Thunder. I didn’t watch much of this series, and I didn’t need to…it’s the freaking NBA with so many players not knowing how to move their feet on defense they could take lessons from high school kids. But, I do know this – The 3 guys I have listed should retire together and also have their names enshrined in the San Antonio arena.
- Yep – the NBA and NHL playoff are still too long. Both seasons should be over already.
- The Green Bay Packers need to make up their mind. This week, there were conflicting reports on whether they are moving on from their long-time fullback John Kuhn. One report says there is mutual interest, and another says they’re moving on to 2nd-year guy Aaron Ripkowski. Here’s what the Packers should do. Sign Kuhn for one final season, and phase him out during the season like they did with Donald Driver a couple seasons ago.
- Gummy is having a great start to his season – hitting a whopping .367 with 7 homers/27 RBI. So, it will inevitably beg the question of when the Brewers need to trade him. That time is now. His value appears to be going up and at 32, he should not be in the 3-4-year rebuilding effort going on in Milwaukee. Apparently, he has a no-trade clause to most teams aside of the West Coast and the Marlins. The Brewers will need to eat a good chunk of his remaining $90 million owed unless he goes to a team like the Angels or Dodgers.
- Jonathan Lucroy will most likely be dealt this year, also. All I ask is part of the return of whatever the Brewers get back, better include top third base and first base prospects who are nearly major league ready.
- Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor? Who’s the genius that thought of this ‘super fight’?? For the love of all good things – unless McGregor can knock this woman-beater into oblivion getting him to do other martial arts vs. boxing, then sure. Otherwise, leave this alone UFC and Boxing.
- I get the impression Jordan Spieth was not happy with his buddy and caddie on this. It would have been more fun if he was swearing on live TV, though. Link
My big topic of the week: College sports realignment and what it’s doing to rivalries
First, let me say I’ve had it up to my thick neck with all of this college sports realignment BS. Money talks and TV networks talk, traditional rivalries walks.
If you’ve paid attention to some of the sports shows in the past couple weeks, I’m sure you’ve heard the possibility of the Big 12 expanding back to 12 teams so they can have a conference championship game once again….er, more money. Isn’t it ironic that the Big 12 is looking to get BACK to 12 teams, you know, match their league name? Brilliant, I say!! Rumors of them adding schools like Cincinnati, Boise State, BYU, Colorado State or even Florida State as early as this summer has been mentioned by the league presidents.
There are pros and cons of making such moves, as in most cases, money and available resources are the big driver in most moves made – in realignment or any walk of life. But, they need to have some rivalries kept in tact. In recent seasons, we’ve lost rivalries like West Virginia-Pittsburgh, Kansas-Missouri, Notre Dame-Michigan, Texas-Texas A&M, Oklahoma-Nebraska and others to list due to money, being butt-hurt from their previous conferences for various reasons. Rivalries are what makes watching sports fun – grill out on weekends and drink some beers with your friends.
I think it’d be smart for schools to begin thinking of ways to make college sports (specifically football and basketball since they are the main drivers) a priority to the students and fans. They need to bring back the rivalries, and in turn, could generate MORE revenue if they had games fans would pay more attention to. If schools continue to move leagues, then some non-conference games should be against schools they were rivals with. I’d pay more in ticket prices to rivalry games than to a team that has really no history against that program. Before Maryland joined the Big Ten, they had an agreement to a home-and-home series with Wisconsin for the 2020-2021 seasons. Now, those will be conference games…and that’s still weird to say.
I mean, don’t you get fired up on Saturdays for that huge Wisconsin-Rutgers rivalry game? How about West Virginia-Baylor? Missouri-Georgia? Those are just HUGE games that make me want to get to the sports bar and watch the game!! The Big Ten is going to have their Conference basketball tournaments in the near future at Washington DC and New York City. Stick to tradition, keep that in Chicago or Indianapolis.
Less is more in this case, and I’m not concerned with how many TV sets I can get a network in. Teams that need to be moved are:
- Maryland and Rutgers out of the Big Ten. Perhaps even Penn State? Maryland belongs in the ACC.
- West Virginia out of the Big 12
- Colorado out of the Pac-14 (12)
- Missouri and Texas A&M out of the SEC
- Syracuse, Notre Dame, Boston College and Pittsburgh out of the ACC. (ND should be in the Big Ten, but that’s another argument)
The one thing noticeable here, is enough of these schools are geographically close enough to form their own league. Oh wait, aside of the Sanduskys’, they were!! That league is now the now basketball-only Big East!
But the lure of the power conferences and huge money for their schools and athletic departments is too great now. And it’s a shame. Reverse the trend soon, or they could run the risk of losing fans and ticket sales.
- Another thing I could rip on in college football is these neutral-site games. Teams not wanting to play home-and-home series at the campuses is increasing yearly and that’s a shame. As much as I like the LSU-Wisconsin game at Lambeau Field in September, how cool would that be a night game at Camp Randall Stadium? Or two years ago – night game in Death Valley?
- Dumb ass of the week:
Me. Yep, I’m throwing myself into this category. I helped friends last weekend by subbing in a softball game, and was glad to do so. In doing so, I gained a partial tear in my right calf. Again. For the 5th time (first time in the right leg), and it will set me back around 8 weeks. Ugh. I did all of the stretches and everything necessary prior to the game, but that didn’t matter…one push off of third base and the damn thing popped twice. I guess the right leg was jealous of the left leg injuries in the past and wanted to join?
Back in 2 weeks. See ya then.