Thursday, February 12, 2009

Back to work

For some reason I've always been really healthy. It's certainly not eating lots of vegetables or getting lots of sleep, because I don't do either one of those. Despite that, other than a food poisoning episode I hadn't had a serious illness since I graduated high school. I appreciate that more than ever now - these past four days have been rough. At one point I was having a lengthy hallucination that I was there watching Pittsburgh and Minnesota in Super Bowl IX - no idea why. Fortunately the worst seems behind me now and so it's back to our regularly scheduled blog.

There's no point in me getting all worked up about the Alex Rodriguez news in a blog post five days after it hit. The latest info on it, that Bud Selig says he may suspend A-Rod, is worth discussing. Do you believe this Saturday was the first Bud Selig has heard of this situation? I certainly don't. But since Rodriguez's name got leaked, now the 18.5 million dollar man thinks he might need to do something as a PR move. There are 103 other guys who tested positive in 2003, most of whose names have not come out. Unless Selig intends to suspend all of them, this is a ridiculous notion. Rodriguez is a dope, as his ridiculous and inaccurate complaints about SI's reporter further demonstrated, but he shouldn't be singled out for punishment on tests that were supposed to be destroyed six years ago.

For some reason the NCAA Football Rules Committee thinks what the sport needs right now is less celebrating when a player does something good. They're considering making it a live action penalty, so if a kid high steps the final five yards into the end zone and offends a ref's delicate sensibilities his team would lose the TD and be back on the 20. After the Washington-BYU fiasco last season, you'd think they would be trying to create a version of the rule which allows for spontaneity and excitement in a big moment. Instead, we get this idea, a cure that's worse than the original cold.

The Jaguars cut bait on a pair of bad free agent signings yesterday, which should drive home again how foolish teams are with these acquisitions. Jerry Porter's been known as an incredible athlete with major attitude and work ethic questions since he was in college. What do you know? Turns out that's what he still is. Jacksonville got 11 catches out of the guy. All around the league, agents phones will be ringing with clients who want to get the Porter deal - 1 million per reception. How exactly does Jack Del Rio not catch serious heat for last year? He dumped the DC, they fired the GM, but Jack seems to be able to skate on by.

I'm from Tampa, which is why I noticed this but it's a recurring theme through the years. The latest example that caught my attention came from a column by Bob Hunter of the Columbus Dispatch...

"The Southern schools will pick off an Ohio player now and then, but it's not make or break for them; as the migration continues, the odds of them finding a great player in Tampa, Fla., Atlanta or Houston keep increasing."

Tampa's hosted four Super Bowls, has had pro sports since 1975, a BCS conference member school is located there and it's the thirteenth largest TV market in the US. If someone doesn't know by now that Tampa is in Florida, odds are that person can't read. Yet northern writers always seem to do this - not sure why, but it annoys the hell out of me when they do.

One final thought for your day: never shoot at a target on a steel pole.

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