Category Archives: Sports

The NFL Lockout Might Drive Me To Church Again

Who Dat Say Prayer Is NFL's Answer?

As apocalyptic visions of tsunamis and wars dance like fire-breathing demons on the national news this morning, I am considering going to church again.

Full disclosure: I don’t generally attend church. I did visit a non-denominational church a few weeks ago. It wasn’t a bad time, but I didn’t leave awed. I left hungry.

It’s not the tsunamis or wars or talk of more wars that has me weighing the pros and cons of church. I’m not one to believe the world will end in 2012. I don’t buy into the apocalypse. The world ends when you die. Enjoy life while you have breath in your lungs.

Ok, enough with my philosophy, the reason I am thinking about going to church is because I would like to organize a group prayer for the NFL to return this fall.

You see, the NFL went on hiatus Friday, as a result of the league’s Players Association and the 32 team owners failing to reach a labor agreement to divide their $9 billion pie, and I am already concerned about the void this will leave in my life.

Continue reading

Thanks Fox For Trying to Ruin The Super Bowl: A Love Letter

Green Bay’s 31-25 triumph over Pittsburgh in Super Bowl XLV Sunday will be remembered by football fans as an entertaining game that cemented quarterback Aaron Rodgers’ rightful place among the NFL’s elite.

And that’s great except … well, except I fell asleep during long stretches of the game due to the effects of an illness that did not care whether the game on the television was the Meineke Car Care Bowl or the Super Bowl. So I don’t recall much of Rodgers’ MVP performance.

Ironically, I did catch large swatches of the endless hotair-a-thon known as Fox’s Super Bowl XLV Pre-Game Show, a hodgepodge of uninspiring commercials and one of the most piss poor Super Bowl halftime “shows” ever. You know, the bits of unneccessary spectacle that make the Super Bowl feel like watching a joyless exhibition of gluttony at your local dinner buffet on any given weeknight.

Needless to say I won’t have many picture frame memories of Super Bowl XLV.

Here are the things and people I’d like to forget, plus the Fox Sports personalities I’d like to see fight in the near future. Click the link below to get this lovefest started.

Continue reading

Miles’ Decision Makes Me Smile; BCS Finish Makes Me Sad

The Mad Hatter abides! Photo by Associated Press

I am happy Les Miles will return as LSU’s head football coach in 2011.

I never envisioned writing that sentence after the Tigers nearly suffered disastrous losses against North Carolina and Tennessee early this season.

Sometimes it is better to be lucky than good. Miles personified this in 2010 while leading LSU to its third season of 11 or more wins during his six-year tenure.

I felt apprehensive when, on the eve of LSU’s Cotton Bowl victory over Texas A&M, reports from big name media outlets circulated that Miles would take the head coaching position at his alma mater Michigan if offered the job.

However, I woke Tuesday morning to welcome text messages from friends in Louisiana informing me Miles decided to stay at LSU. Later in the day, Michigan announced it had hired San Diego State coach Brady Hoke.

I heard the collective sigh of LSU fans here in Portland. Or maybe that was the unforgiving wind on a terribly cold day.

How is it possible LSU fans, like myself, are so excited for another year with Les “The Mad Hatter” Miles?

Continue reading

Out Of The Toilet Bowl And Into The Natty: An Oregon Alum’s Take On the Ducks’ Rise From Obscurity To The Title Game

There were no winners that day. At the end of what has been dubbed “The Toilet Bowl,” involving the University of Oregon Ducks and Oregon State Beavers, the scoreboard read 0-0.

Some say it was the worst football game ever played.

Eleven fumbles, five interceptions, four missed field goals, no points.

If overtime rules had existed then, this comical futility may have never ended.

The year was 1983, several months before I moved to Oregon. This was the state of the Oregon Ducks football program when I first set foot in the Pacific Northwest. It was a laughingstock of a program, unknown to the rest of the country.

Tonight the Ducks play the Auburn Tigers for the right to be called national champions.

Continue reading

The Wait Is The Hardest Part

For a football fan, the day before your favorite team, whether college or pro, plays for a championship is excruciating. Anxiety runs through your veins. You just want the day to end as soon as possible.

The day of the big game is Christmas. The game is the present. It’s a present unwrapped over the course of three and a half hours and countless commercial breaks, and may ultimately end in disappointment rather than joy. There are no refunds, no exchange policies. Buy the ticket, take the ride, as Hunter Thompson often wrote.

The mood in Portland today, on the eve of Oregon’s BCS National Title Game appearance against Auburn, is one of nervous anticipation. The sky is filled with thick, navy blue clouds, and the forecast calls for snow tonight. The city’s eternally crappy winter weather doesn’t take a break for championship games.

Continue reading

A Tough Day To Be A Saints Fan …

It’s a major understatement to say today is not a great day to be a New Orleans Saints fan. The Saints’ loss to the team with the worst record to ever make the NFL playoffs — while being the defending Super Bowl champions no less — is an abysmal distinction, one that has to make Saints fans’ stomachs turn.

It’s even more of an understatement to say today is not a great day to be a New Orleans Saints fan living in the Pacific Northwest. One of my roommates sat next to me during the game decked out in a Seahawks hoodie and hat; I wore a Jeremy Shockey jersey my friend Jonathan bought me.

Disappointed does not even come close to describing how I feel.  But the Saints’ 41-36 loss to the Seahawks today has to be put in perspective. The anger I felt earlier was unhealthy and unproductive. I have calmed down and the full scope of my vocabulary has returned.

After four decades of futility, New Orleans won the Super Bowl last season. The Saints were the best team among the league’s 32 teams. It would be nice to achieve that status every year, but it is not possible. The NFL changes too fast. Players get hurt; players age; players disappoint; others emerge.

Continue reading

An LSU Fan In Portland’s BCS Title Game Thoughts

This may disappoint my friends in Portland but there is an upcoming college football game I am more interested in than Monday’s BCS National Title Game between Oregon and Auburn.

The game I am referencing is LSU’s clash with Texas A&M in the Cotton Bowl Friday night. Guest blogger and Oregon alum Ben Lundin might have been correct when he implied no one outside Louisiana and Texas cared about the game, except he forgot my mailing address also says Portland, Oregon.

Continue reading

Cliches, predictability plague football coverage

 

Noted U. of Oregon fan Ben Lundin (left) celebrates the Ducks' BCS title game berth.

By Ben Lundin aka Ben “The Machine” Lundeen, softball shortstop extraordinaire.

And so ends bowl season. With the Ohio State Fighting Sweatervests’ victory over the Arkansas Hogs in Tuesday’s Sugar Bowl, we reach the end of the (important) bowl season and await the only bowl game that matters: the mythical national championship. Sure, there are a few games left on the slate. There’s the AT&T Cotton Bowl involving LSU and Texas A&M, but does anyone outside of Louisiana or Texas care?

In case you can’t hear the thoughts of this blog’s other readers, the answer is, “Meh, I don’t know, it’s better than ‘Two and a Half Men.’”

Continue reading