Connecticut ladies bite the dust
The Yukon ladies streak had reached 111 before Mississippi State defeated them 66-64 in overtime. As dominate as they had been, anything can happen in this sport, for no other reason than there are only five players at a time allowed on the court. The last UConn had been pushed this hard was back on November of 2014. Not having been in that position, they probably weren't used to reacting to that and that may have been a factor, too. During their last game, a lady analyst said that it wouldn't surprise her if UConn's streak reached 200 wins in a row. Next October, they can start all over again.
Rochester D & C sports writer, Sal Maiorana, listed 9 rule changes that would speed up a baseball game. Some suggestions were good, some thought provoking and a couple that were just...ridiculous.
1) A 20-second pitch clock. If you watch carefully, a lot of the pitching delays are caused by batters not being in the box. This really won't help
2) Speaking of which - Keeping the batters in the box. I've always loved this idea. Now if we can just get umpires to enforce it completely.
3) Raise the strike zone. This is in the works. The one fear is that pitchers will be even more careful which will result in more full counts and more walks - and longer innings.
4) Limit on foul balls. Here is ridiculous suggestion #1. This isn't a beer-game softball game.
5) Limit catcher's trips to the mound. Interesting thought, but if the pitcher and catcher get confused on the signals, people could get hurt. I don't see how you could limit this and have this danger lurking.
6) Pick-off throws. This needs some explanations. He proposes that a pitcher can only try to pick-off the lead runner. So how do you prevent the other runners from straying way off the base? Why, you limit the length of a lead to 15 feet. Now umpires would have to carry a tape measure. This is ridiculous suggestion #2
7) Limit warm-up pitches for relievers to two. This is ridiculous suggestion #3. A lot of that warm-up for relievers is to allow the reliever to get used to the mound. His arm is fine, but analysts will tell you that the bullpen mound is often very different from the one on the field.
8) Relievers must face at least two batters. This is very interesting and could change the game a lot more than just the reduction of time. This will affect some managerial strategies, which isn't a bad thing.
9) Eliminate the 40-man September roster. Again, an interesting idea but Sal adds that he would limit in to 30-man rosters. Most teams don't call up more than 6 or 7 players anyway and I don't see how this limit could change the length of a game significantly anyway. Besides, if you do this, you'll have to answer to the MLB Players Association and the players agents (Two words - Scott Boras).
You've got to be kidding me.
31 Baylor “student-athletes” have been accused of a total of 51 assaults against women, including gang rapes, including two football players who were arrested last week. This has been going on for some time. AD Ian McCaw has resigned after 13 years at the helm. Where did he end up? He was hired as the AD of Liberty, a Christian fundamentalist college founded by Jerry Falwell. "Liberty’s president, Jerry Falwell Jr., welcomed McCaw, saying: “Ian’s success speaks for itself. You look at what Baylor was able to do during his tenure; it fits perfectly with where we see our sports programs going.” Yeah, look at what he accomplished at Baylor. I can't believe this.
In with the old and in with the new.
First time for Gonzaga in the finals of the NCAA against North Carolina, who has been there many times. The Zags have shown that they are not intimidated by anyone or anything, so the Tarheels will have to bring more than just their clippings to this game. Naturally, Annie-O will be rooting for the underdogs as she always does. She says that's also why she married me.
We're nothing; we're just the fans.
In his last couple of years, Joe DiMaggio was often in great pain. A sports writer once asked him why he continually tried to play every game or at least ease off during the game. Joe D's response immediate and to the point: "What about all those people who came to see me play? Shouldn't I go all out for those people?" I guess coaches like Greg Popovich and Steve Kerr don't care about those fans. When the have their playoff situation locked, they continually "rest" their players so as not to wear them out for the playoffs. And not just one player at a time, but three or four of his starters for the whole game. Those players actually come to the game in street clothes and sit on the bench, smiling, laughing and making funny comments. What about me, the poor fan who just paid $75 to sit in the nosebleed section at the AT & T Center in San Antonio, or $225 to sit in the Plaza section. Even though I could afford it, I would hate paying $750 to sit court side to watch Joel Anthony (Who??) ($350,000) play instead of Pau Gasol ($15 mil) or Manu Ginobili ($14 mil). That's the way to build fan support Coach Popvich. At least make those benched players hand out towels and Gatorade during the breaks. I might pay money to see Kawhi Leonard ($17.6 mil) wait on Davis Bertans ($550,000). Not a lot, but some.
***THEY SAID IT***
"Geez, the Yankees have a mental conditioning coach? Why not an air conditioning coach?" -- Phil Mushnick
"In the office bracket, I’m behind a -- Brad Dickson who wrote in “Ashley Judd” to win the tournament."
"Golfer Cody Gribble tapped a resting alligator’s tail, sending it scurrying into a water hazard. Pretty sure that is how Captain Hook got his start." -- Alex Kaseberg
"Summing up Duke guard Grayson Allen's thoughts on his time with the Blue Devils: "It’s been a trip." -- RJ Currie
"5-time Olympic gold-medal swimmer Dana Vollmer, 6 months pregnant, plans to race in 50-meter freestyle next month. Weaker sex my ass." -- Janice Hough
"Parents assure scared child there’s no such thing as Skip Bayless.” -- The Onion.com [Boy, I sure wish this wasn't a joke. - CP]
"I wouldn’t say some NCAA tournament announcers -- Brad Dickson but in the closing minute of Gonzaga’s 61-58 win over West Virginia, a TBS analyst blocked two West Virginia shots."
"I fibbed to my wife about why I returned a stud-finder to the hardware store. I told her it kept pointing to me." -- RJ Currie
"Interesting how the pre-seasons for MLB and NBA are ending about the same time." -- Janice Hough
"No Shame Winner of the Week: Roger Goodell and his coterie of team owners. At a time when the NFL is suffering an epidemic of college-refined players given to committing crimes, the league’s moving a team to Las Vegas. That Nevada Hookers’ Union lobby is powerful." -- Phil Mushnick