Gorches: These aren’t worth giving thanks
By Steve T. Gorches 648-3141 or firstname.lastname@example.org November 24, 2011 10:52PM
Updated: December 26, 2011 9:07AM
Anybody can write one of those Thanksgiving columns listing things in sports we should be thankful for. How about a day-after-Thanksgiving column on what we shouldn’t be thankful for in the sports world?
That’s how I roll.
Just call me Scrooge Gorches, a party pooper who prefers to look at the negative side of things and is secure in his mantra as an eternal pessimist.
I am thankful for so much in sports — high school coaches who care about the kids more than wins and losses, Major League Baseball hammering out a collective bargaining agreement quickly instead of putting fans through the ringer with a lockout like other leagues, Aaron Rodgers being the quarterback of the Green Bay Packers.
But those positives are easy to highlight. The negatives are more entertaining.
Not thankful for the NBA: Speaking of MLB, let’s start with those dreaded labor issues.
Baseball gets it. Finish an exciting season that culminated with an improbable September, then one of the most thrilling World Series in recent memory, and follow it up with getting an agreement between the union and owners done in very little time.
Are you listening NBA?
Even the NFL understood it needed to get a deal done in time to not miss any games.
The NBA had a great season last year, from the Miami Heat becoming a hated team — it’s always good for business to have a standout villain for the majority of fans to despise (i.e. the New York Yankees or the Galatic Empire from Star Wars) — and the Bulls back on track with MVP Derrick Rose leading the way. And how does it follow that up? With a lockout that had resulted in games lost and an upcoming legal battle that could cancel the season.
It took baseball years to recover from no World Series in 1994.
Hockey is still trying to bounce back from losing the 2004-05 season, though the Blackhawks are bringing fans back in Chicago.
There’s a glimmer of hope with owners and players getting together earlier this week and today as they try to preserve a 66-game schedule starting on Christmas Day, but I’m not holding out hope.
Not thankful for Penn State: Up until the last several weeks, I used to have so much respect for Joe Paterno and the Penn State football program.
Who knew it was home to one of the creepiest men — if you can call alleged child molester Jerry Sandusky a man — I’ve ever read about.
And every day it seems like new information comes out, including a former Penn State employee saying Paterno’s players got in trouble more often than other students, and got special treatment compared to non-athletes. And don’t forget about more former Second Mile kids coming out with allegations against Sandusky.
Why should anybody be surprised anymore. The NCAA is going to investigate, but do you really think that inept organization will come to the rightful decision?
Not thankful for the BCS: Speaking of ineptness and college football, how about that Bowl Championship Series and the craziness that has occurred in the poll recently.
Just a couple weeks ago, fans and pundits were worried about having multiple undefeated teams throwing a monkey wrench into the national championship process. Now there’s only one undefeated team — LSU — and that could change since the Tigers face No. 3 Arkansas today.
The debate has changed into who are the best one-loss teams with the real possibility of two Southeastern Conference (SEC) teams facing in the national championship game.
That’s unacceptable, unfair, despicable and just plain stupid.
How can any team play in that game without playing in its conference championship game?
How can any team play in that game after losing in its conference championship game?
One of those scenarios are very likely to happen and that makes college football a sham.
Not thankful for Indiana-Kentucky All-Star Games: In case you hadn’t heard, the annual Indiana-Kentucky basketball series that takes place in June has been taken over by the Indiana Basketball Coaches Association after being run by the Indianapolis Star for years.
It’s not surprising that a newspaper is dropping sponsorship of an event. It’s happening too much in recent years due to the economy. But I still think the event should be changed since it’s out-lived its usefulness or attractiveness.
The games, especially on the boys side, aren’t competitive much anymore. Kentucky just isn’t up to Indiana’s level, and hasn’t been consistently since the days of Jack Givens or Rex Chapman.
I still say the games should be changed to the Indiana-Illinois All-Star Games. Wouldn’t it have been great to see the likes of Kevin Garnett or Eddy Curry or Isiah Thomas or Antoine Walker facing Indiana’s best?
Not thankful for Ndamukong Suh: Of course, he’s not on my favorite NFL team, or the the favorite team of the majority of people reading this, but I’m not thankful he’s even in the NFL. In case you missed it, Suh showed Thursday why he’s been dubbed the dirtiest player in football.
If ripping off Jay Cutler’s helmet two weeks ago wasn’t evidence enough, how about slamming a Packers’ offensive lineman’s head into the turf multiple times, then standing up and stomping on the lineman with his foot. It resulted in a penalty that gave Green Bay a first down after missing a pass on third-and-goal — meaning Suh isn’t a very intelligent player — and an ejection for Suh.
You can also expect a hefty fine for the repeat offender, and there should be at least a two-game suspension too, if not more.