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Opinion & Analysis

  • Sports commentary: A short story for you

     

    In honor of the Staunton River boys basketball team, I'll keep this column short.

    You're probably thinking two things:  "Thank goodness!" and "What does the Staunton River boys basketball team have to do with you being merciful to us poor readers?"

    Glad I had you thinking that (even if you weren't).

    There's no way to avoid a direct answer here.  The brevity of this column is reflective of the shortness of that particular team.

  • Sports commentary: True North

     

    When it's nine degrees outside, one's mind wanders to odd places.  In my case, it was Germany, New Jersey and Qatar.

    I started writing this column last week, during our vicious cold snap.  That's right:  I never stop working for you, the loyal reader.

  • Sports commentary: By any other name

     

    "The king is dead.  Long live the king!"

    That's what people in nations ruled by royalty are purported to exclaim when a sovereign passes away, only to be succeeded by his son/brother/nephew.

    The declaration could be adapted for college football:

    "The BCS is dead.  Long live the BCS."

    Monday night marked the expiration of the much-derided Bowl Championship Series.  We've been told the system will be replaced by a much better one.

  • Sports commentary: A Desert of Ice

     

    The iceman cometh, but not in these parts.

    I've gushed previously on the wonderful attributes that adorn life in this area of Virginia.  

    Now, I'm griping.

    Where's the hockey?

    Now, I fully realize that neither the town nor the county of Bedford has the population or the inclination to support pro hockey at any level.

    I also understand that the introduction of the sport at the high school level is too pricey a proposition to merit even consideration.

  • Sports commentary: Thank you for your service

     

    Go Army!  Beat Navy!

    "Wait a minute," you might be thinking.  "Didn't this guy write a column on the Army-Navy game last week?

    I did.  But I'm not through with the topic.

    Last week's column was written in a humorous vein, though I'm certain there are readers who might counter that last week's column was merely an attempt at writing in a humorous vein.

    This week, I'm taking a more somber approach.

  • Sports commentary: The Army Team

     

    Go Army!  Beat Navy!

    Next weekend, I'll get to see if yet another of my accursed streaks might come to an end.

    In case you're keeping score at home, my favorite teams have endured the following strings of bad luck:

    -Minnesota Golden Gopher football – Last won the national title in 1960.

    -Buffalo Bills – Nary a Super Bowl win in the team's history.

    -Chicago Cubs – 106 years since they last won a World Series.

    Added to this ignominy are these nuggets:

  • Is hunter training robust enough?

     

    The undisputed goal for hunting safety is zero.

    Anyone associated with the sport wants zero incidents and zero hunting-related fatalities.

    Of course, such a number will likely always be aspirational.  So the realistic goal is to keep the number of incidents and deaths to as low a number as is reasonably possible.

    A cursory glance at the chart below shows that, by and large, Virginia has a notably low rate of hunting incidents.

  • Sports commentary: A mixed bag

     

    What do the following have in common:  limburger cheese, kidney pie, Lady Gaga and the new VHSL playoff structures?

    While you may be tempted to answer:  "They all smell funny," that would be an incorrect answer.

    In order to get a passing grade on this simple test, you'd have to have answered:  "People either love them or they hate them."

  • Sports commentary: Local is good

     

    When it comes to college sports, there's something to be said for in-state rivalries.

    Well, at least I hope there is, seeing that I have 20 column inches here that need filling up with thoughts about the topic.

    Check that.  I need to fill  18.5, as I've already used up  a bit with the intro.  And, according to my editor, those (now) 18 inches of writing had better be pretty darn good.

  • Sports commentary: The Tempest

     

    The kerfuffle in Miami got me reminiscing about fifth-grade history class.

    The disturbance to which I refer is the high drama being played out over a couple of offensive linemen, where neither is now suiting up on Sundays.  The culprit appears to be bullying.

    Full disclosure:  I'm a Buffalo Bills fan, and my team has enough of its own problems (such as finding a quarterback who isn't prone to injury).  Still, the two teams play in the same division, so I'm interested.