Well, the past two weekends, although the schedules looked thrilling, didn't really produce the greatest games as most of the marquee matchups ended up being blowouts. Let's hope this weekend is different:
Stocks are tanking, the economy's a mess, and if you believe the polls, our great nation is going to head much further left in ten days: wouldn't you like something to smile about?
Well, click on the embedded video to your right, and watch the heart-warming story of a 73-year-old man whose dream of returning to college basketball after more than five decades has come true thanks to the extraordinary kindness of a head coach in Harriman, Tennessee.
For some background, details about the amazing Ken Mink were reported by the Knoxville News Sentinel on October 4 (h/t InstaGlen):
My oh my oh my what a wonderful Saturday of college football should be ahead of us. If today's schedule doesn't send a thrill up your leg, nothing will:
No. 22 Vanderbilt at No. 10 Georgia. I know we've got Dawgs fans here. Can any of you point to the last game between these two teams that was this big?
No. 16 Kansas at No. 4 Oklahoma. Does this have the possibility of being another HUGE Big 12 matchup like last week's Sooners-Horns classic?
No. 12 Ohio State at No. 20 Michigan State. Did anyone point at this game in August as having so much meaning? This game has excitement dripping all over it!
No. 11 Missouri at No. 1 Texas. Oh baby, the Horns better have their A-game plugged in, because the Tigers gotta be furious about how things ended last weekend, and they're looking to show the nation what they're really made of. This could be a lotta fun!
Moving from the gridiron, can the Rays close this thing out today, or are the Sox gonna do it again?
Has Mike Barnicle called Sarah Palin stupid? Seems that way. In a Huffington Post column that Mika Brzezinski read on today's Morning Joe, Barnicle, referring to Palin, wrote of the:
preposterous pronouncements of a woman whose candidacy is an insult to intelligence.
Let's deconstruct. The normal formulation is an "insult to our intelligence," used to describe an assertion that is obviously unbelievable. For example, you might say Barack Obama insulted our intelligence when he claimed against all evidence during this week's debate that his only tie to ACORN is his past representation of the group in a lawsuit. But when Barnicle writes that Sarah Palin's candidacy is an insult not to "our" intelligence, but to intelligence itself, it's hard to read that other than as suggesting Palin is something other than smart. Throw in his reference to "preposterous pronouncements" and there's little doubt that the person Barnicle intended to insult is Palin herself. Mika seemed to acknowledge that Barnicle meant to slur Sarah, observing, after reading that last line, "that's rough stuff."
We've got a nice college FB schedule today beginning with Texas (5) vs. Oklahoma (1) in just an hour. Honestly, does it get better than this?
And closing out the day is LSU (4) at Florida (11). For several years, these SEC matchups have been BY FAR the most exciting regular season football of the year. Will the Tigers and the Gators live up to the hype this year and entertain the heck out of a Wall Street beaten-down nation desperately in need of some cheap fun on a Saturday night? Any other games to watch?
In MLB, are you surpised by the Phillies taking a 2-0 lead? And are the Rays running out of steam leading to yet another World Series appearance by the Sox?
Hockey is now well under way with the Rangers starting the season 3-0. Any predictions?
After last week's upset heaven in college football -- or hell depending on what side you were on! -- what will the big upsets be today? How about my son's Huskers taking down Mizzou?
What other games should we be looking at?
Talk about upsets, could the top teams in both leagues get knocked out in the first round of the baseball playoffs? If the Angels and Cubbies are gone, who becomes the favorites to go to the World Series?
During Monday's football game between Dallas and Philadephia, I commented in the Open Thread that despite hating the Cowboys, the post-game interview with quarterback Tony Romo instantly made me a fan of his.
Well, now there's something more to like about this fine young man, because on his way home from the airport after last Sunday's game, Romo actually stopped to help a couple with a flat tire.
The following story from the September 11 edition of the Fort Worth Star Telegram is guaranteed not only to put a smile on your face, but also will renew your faith that fame and fortune don't corrupt everyone they touch (photo courtesy FWST):
First, a disclaimer: the weekend sports open threads were postponed during the Olympics to prevent folks from giving results on events that hadn't yet aired in the various time zones. Last weekend was an "Oops," as between the DNC, Gustav, and Palin, well, I just forgot. :-)
For this weekend, I can't find any REALLY exciting matchups in college football. Am I wrong?
On to tennis, this year's Wimbledon final might have been the greatest in history. Will we see something similar at Flushing Meadows this weekend? If Nadal wins, thereby becoming only the fourth man to win three Grand Slam events in the same year, will he have officially taken the thrown away from Federer? Are folks surprised at how well this young man has transformed his clay court expertise into hardcourt prowess? (BTW: I am!!!)
For sports discussion and debate. Possible talking point: Michael Phelps.
I know people probably want to discuss something other than the Olympics, and they should feel free. However, did last night's extraordinary finish by Phelps seal his status as an American sports legend? If you haven't seen it (or even if you have!), please watch this video of last night's race (available here). Pay particular attention to the super slo-mo which shows Cavic in clear position to touch the wall first, but a determined Phelps doing the seemingly impossible.
Also, don't miss the stunned expression on Michael's mom's face, as well as the coach's reaction. This video is really one of the most amazing things I've ever seen.
While the Washington Post's Beijing-based Ariana Eunjung Cha should be commended for her reporting on Beijing's restrictions on the exercise of religion by Olympic team chaplains, the paper's headline editors clearly dropped the ball in titling her August 14 headline: "Some Olympians Dissatisfied With Religious Center."
The casual reader might say, "so what," and breeze past the article. After all, any Olympic Games is bound to garner a host of logistics and aesthetics complaints from athletes, coaches, media, and tourists on a whole host of things. But the substance of the story is not so much on the subjective and sometimes picayune complaints of athletes and coaches but rather in the tightly-restricted manner in which the Communist Chinese government is providing for the spirital welfare of the Olympians.
Phelps's drug of choice: rocking out on his iPod before a swim.
I kid you not.
To be fair to the Sun, Maese posted the letter from Dr. Alexei Koudinov without comment, but given the Sun's liberal biases and the fact that as a Towson, Maryland, native Phelps's hometown paper is the Sun, it's rather ridiculous to give Koudinov's argument the time of day. Koudinov's argument in a nutshell:
Greg Norman is going for the history books today, trying to become the oldest man to ever win a "major" golf tournament.
Through three, he looks VERY nervous going out bogey-bogey-bogey, while Padraig Harrington, the defending champion, has gone a very impressive par-par-par (photo courtesy Getty Images).
Will Greg settle down and make this a match, or is this another classic Sunday el foldo by the Shark? Assuming the former, and Norman could actually win this at 53, how important an event would this be in sports history?