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Sports commentary: Cornucopia

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Autumnal droppings from the world of sports

By Mike Forster

    Forthwith is a grab-bag of thoughts and musings for your consideration.

I'd like to think this collection is analogous to the autumnal harvest horn o' plenty.  You, however, might view it as similar to that collection of week-old Halloween candy still in the bowl:  the unwanted misfits growing stale until you grow desperate enough to finally consider them.

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Welcome to my world, Virginia Tech fans. 

That would be the one of the University of Minnesota football fan.  This world consists of looking at the schedule, trying to calculate how your team might eke out six wins and qualify for some minor bowl game.

Here are some of the bowl games the Golden Gophers have hit over the past couple of decades:  the Sun Bowl, MicronPC.com Bowl, Music City Bowl and the Insight Bowl.

The Hokies currently sit at 4-5 following their loss to Miami.  Tech has to win two of its three remaining games:  against Florida State, Boston College and Virginia.  

Nothing is assured, though the Hokies should win those last two games, making them bowl-eligible.

Guess what, folks?  They don't invite 6-6 teams to the big games.  That means Tech is looking at playing in something like the Russell Athletic Bowl or the Music City Bowl.  In other words, they'll be slumming with programs such as Iowa State, Syracuse, Vanderbilt and, yes, Minnesota.

Hey, by Minnesota standards, 6-6 with a bowl bid is a good season.  But I know Virginia Tech has a bit higher definition of success.

The hope here is that the Hokies tire quickly of living in Minnesota World and are in the hunt for an Orange Bowl berth next season..

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The wife and I finally stopped agonizing and pulled the trigger, bringing on a dog.

What does this have to do with the world of sports?  Well, if you recall, I try to train my dogs to pick college football games.

So, come next fall, you may see "Razor, the pickin' pooch," grace these pages with his prognosticating prowess.

Before I train him for such feats, however, the wife would be satisfied to have him learn how not to blitzkrieg blinds, shred shoes, claw up clothing, ravage rugs and feast on furniture.  Hey, at least he's housetrained.

By the way, Razor is a Shar-pei mix.  I figure we might as well get a Chinese dog since everything else we own seems to be made there.

Hopefully, Razor is a bit more sturdy than the piece of junk  Chinese-built TV we had.  It lasted but a year.

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Wire reports tell me that predatory pedophile Jerry Sandusky has been moved to a maximum security prison.  The move comes not because the 68-year old former Penn State coach is an escape risk or a potential troublemaker.

The move comes because Sandusky is considered to be "very vulnerable in a prison setting."

Not to be overly cruel here, but wouldn't there be a bit of justice in Sandusky being the vulnerable one for a change?

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Can someone please straighten something out?  Is the NHL on strike and the NBA the one that just opened its season, or do I have that backward?

Both sports have made their regular seasons unwatchable to the point of irrelevance.

OK.  THAT was overly cruel!

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Shifting to become more kindly and gentle:  If you're not currently planning to attend it, you may want to alter your plans and hit the AA State Football championships on Dec. 8.

The games (Div. 3 and Div. 4 doubleheader) are hosted at LU  and have the nicest environment in all of preps sports:  enjoyable whether or not there are local teams in the mix.

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My nephew (and godson) Sam got to watch his team, the San Francisco Giants, win the World Series for the second time in the 12 years he's spent on this planet.

Meanwhile, his old uncle still awaits the Cubs' Series glory, 52 years into his time on earth.

Well, it's not all gumdrops and unicorns for this kid.  First of all, his parents are forcing him to grow up in Maine, of all places.  Second, and even worse, he's a NY Jets fan.