A different view of sports

Clearing my mind and notebook while noting that idiots are hard at work offering fake Nike coupons “for people of color” containing Colin Kaepernick’s image. May the perpetrators be caught and prosecuted:

Stormy season

Everything is falling into place for Central Florida – UCF to those too embarrassed to admit the school wouldn’t exist without FEMA funding – to claim another mythical national championship in college football.

Yes, the Knights just had a game against an Atlantic Coast Conference team canceled by a hurricane for the second straight season. That means athletic director Danny White could soon be free to schedule a replacement game against a woefully weak opponent to make up for Saturday’s scrapped road game at North Carolina.

Last season UCF had a home game against Georgia Tech cancelled by Hurricane Irma, and losing that Power 5 opponent hurt the Knights in every ranking but the final Colley Matrix.

Technically, they are calling it a postponement, but the game won’t likely be rescheduled. There are even reports that White might not bother to find a replacement game.

But just in case, White may want to give Liberty University a quick call before someone starts a bidding war. After all, the Flames are on fire in the Bottom Ten of most computer power polls and they have an open date on Oct. 27.

Scheduling Liberty wouldn’t even hurt UCF’s strength of schedule since Josh Heupel’s team already will be lining up against AAC East members UConn, (110), Temple (109) and Eastern Carolina (103), who all rank in the Bottom 30. That’s also true of AAC West opponent SMU (104), which visits Spectrum Stadium Oct. 6. That means only AAC foe Tulsa (100) is missing from the Knights list of guaranteed cupcakes this season.

So chalk up a huge win for Hurricane Florence, who matched the 2017 devastation caused by Irma, which forced the cancellation of a game against Georgia Tech.

Kickoff 2018

NBC comedian Jimmy Fallon: “After losing all 16 of their games last season, the Cleveland Browns’ first game of the year ended in a tie. Yep, the Cleveland Browns: Even when they don’t lose, they don’t win.”
Janice Hough of LeftCoastSportsBabe.com: “So will Aaron Rodgers be first NFL player to win Comeback Player of the Game?”

Comedian Eric Stangel on Twitter: “Marshawn Lynch looking great on Oakland’s first drive. Raiders now calling around for trade partners.”

Janice Hough of LeftCoastSportsBabe, again: “Mayor of a New Orleans suburb just rescinded the city’s ban on Nike equipment and clothing after players on the Saints complained.  Good to know that even in times of prejudice there are priorities in Louisiana.”

Comedian Eric Stangel on Twitter: The definition of insanity is to do the same thing over and over and expect different results. With that said, GOOOOOOOOOOO #Chargers!!!!!!!!!!!

 Pole position

Katie Coates is on a mission to make pole dancing an Olympic sport.

Don’t laugh. If rhythmic gymnastics, synchronized swimming and ballroom dancing (under consideration) can be Olympic sports, then why not pole dancing?

Coates swears her vision of pole dancing has no resemblance to the seductive routines performed at gentlemen’s clubs. While it is not officially recognized by the International Olympic Committee, the sport of pole dancing is funded as a serious sport by many countries, including Mexico. And there is competition for men and women.

“I still have to work as a coach as well as being an athlete but Mexicans are very positive about pole,” said 2018 world silver medalist Moises Reyes.

But the reaction Coates often receives isn’t always positive.

“I’ve had people spit in my face, call me up screaming down the phone and telling me I’m a bad person,” Coates, president of the International Pole Sports Federation, told Al Jazeera.

But the sport is slowing growing, and held its first world championship six years ago.

Coates’ goal over the next couple of years is to expand the sport’s reach to 40 federations on five continents, which would make it eligible for IOC consideration.

The IPSF started with routines that included up to 20 required moves and now has a sanctioning book that is 170 pages.

You might even find moves that resemble routines found in synchronized swimming and rhythmic gymnastics.

“I can’t say for sure that we’ll ever get there, but they told us that we’re an interesting, funky, youth sport so we’re on their radar,” said Coates. “It’s an ambition for all our athletes to be part of the Olympic Games. So never say never. Everyone laughed at me when I first said we’d become a sport, and look where we are now.”

They said it

Lee Corso, to Florida State boosters in 2014, on FSU football teammate/actor Burt Reynolds, who died last week at 82: “I was famous for one thing at Florida State: I was Burt Reynolds’ roommate. … With his looks and my car, we’d kill ’em in Tallahassee.”

Omaha comedy writer/blogger Brad Dickson: “Iowa State has scheduled a football game vs. Incarnate Word which sounds like something you’d play on your iPhone.”

Comedian Argus Hamilton on what the arrival of September means: “That month when Americans can forget politics and go back to hating each other over the football teams we support.”

Janice Hough of LeftCoastSportsBabe.com: “SF Giants now selling 2019 Spring Training packages. With all due respect, anyone who wants to watch Spring Training level baseball can just go to an SFGiants game this September.”

RJ Currie of SportsDeke.com: “Rest in peace Burt Reynolds, perhaps the most famous moustached star in history. Unless you include those East German women shotputters.”

Comedian Eric Stangel on Twitter: “Fantasy football update. I’m losing to a guy who started a player who started the season on IR and is out for the year.”

Dwight Perry of the Seattle Times: “Tigers analyst Rod Allen allegedly assaulted play-by-play broadcaster Mario Impemba, grabbing him from behind, but Allen’s agent says it didn’t happen. Flummoxed Elias Sports Bureau types can’t decide whether to credit Allen with a blown hold or a no-hitter.”

Omaha comedy writer/blogger Brad Dickson on Twitter, again: “To spotlight the UNL campus Saturday during the football game ABC chose to show about 8 students separately taking selfies. A top rated Ag college, business school, law and liberal arts & the network chooses selfies.”

Jim Barach of JokesByJim.blogspot.com: “A survey says 90% of PGA golfers believe Tiger Woods will win another major tournament. The other 10% agree, but are just depressed in realizing they would make more money if they stopped playing golf and became his caddie.”

Omaha comedy writer/blogger Brad Dickson on Twitter, again: “Glad that Nike finally found a spokesperson who’s non-polarizing. Second and third choices were Julian Assange and Kim Jong Un.”

RJ Currie of SportsDeke.com, again: “Your Pacific Coast League manager of the year  — Stubby Clap; one of the best names in baseball. Not such a good name had he wanted to be a porn star.”

Jim Barach of JokesByJim.blogspot.com: “Boxer Saul “Canelo” Alvarez says he visualizes a knockout against his opponent every night before going to bed. Then he lets his opponent knock him out so he can get a full night’s sleep.”

Headlines

TheOnion.com: “Cameraman strikes gold with tubby fan eating ice cream, dancing, holding baby.”

SportsPickle.com: “Pete Carroll is going to yell at the Broncos for hurting Russell Wilson’s feeling by intercepting him.”

Fark.com: “Red Sox usher usually catches a foul ball in one hand, towels off wet seat with the other.”

TheOnion.com: “Russell Wilson asks Seahawks to modify play where he’s immediately tackled by six players.”

Sportspickle.com: “Do you ever sit and think: ‘My god, there are people watching baseball right now.’’’

Fark.com: “The future of sport is here: Olympic pole dancing.”

TheOnion.com: “Matthew Berry admits he just drafts Fantasy Players whose name he recognizes.”

Sportspickle.com: “Rutgers voted best football team in the country.”

Fark.com: “The Chargers’ record continues to be unblemished by success.”

TheOnion.com: “Fan going to see how first few games go before declaring moral objection to watching NFL”

Fark.com: “ACC schools continue to wait until the last minute to avoid playing UCF.”

SportsPickle.com: “Rodgers returned to game because he heard his family was going to visit him at hospital.”

Fark.com: “DeShone Kizer thanks Aaron Rodgers for the assist.”

My takes

Rehastagging this week’s top Tweets from @Randy_Beard11

  • Mets’ David Wright, who has neck issues, is retiring, saying “It’s debilitating to play baseball.” But I just read where the players are tossing miniature footballs around the locker room and shooting miniature basketballs. So do we really have to blame baseball?
  • Boston College’s Anthony Brown’s 5 TD passes accounted for 202 of the 304 yards passing he had against Wake Forest Thursday. He completed 16 of 25 passes overall.
  • FEMA’s Jeff Byard said Hurricane Florence was going to deliver a “Mike Tyson punch to the Carolina coast.” It would have been more appropriate if he had called it a “Joe Frazier punch.” After all, Smokin’ Joe was from Beaufort.
  • Packers should try to extend Aaron Rodgers’ @AaronRodgers12 career by letting him sit out until third quarter of every game.

 End of era

New York Mets third baseman David Wright is scheduled to play his final game on Sept. 29, at which point he will reportedly hang up the cleats and gloves.

Technically, he’s not retiring, but he will go back to being inactive because of unsuccessful surgeries for spinal stenosis that has caused pain in his neck, shoulder and back.

Because the Mets still owe him $27 million over the 2019 and 2020 seasons, he will remain on the disabled list so the club can recoup most of that money from insurance.

“From everything the doctors have told me, there’s not going to be any improvement,” said Wright, who has a career .296 batting average and 242 home runs but hasn’t played more than 38 games since 2016. “Some days the pain could be moderate and manageable. Some days it was too much to be thinking about baseball. … It’s debilitating to play baseball.”

It’s just another reminder that it’s not whether you win or lose, its how you play the game.

2 thoughts on “From Sidelines to punchlines

  1. I actually heard at dinner a discussion that there are friends who are interested in the kind of pole dancing you described. Pretty amazing.

    Like

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