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Opinion & Analysis

  • Sports Commentary: Pisces' lament

     

    Twenty-eight days of nothing.

    The month of February used to be derided by sports pundits, using the above statement to point out:  a) it is the shortest month and b) it contained nothing of value sports-wise.

    As a guy who tries his best to be pundity about sports, that hurt, since I was born in February.

    Until recently, such disparagement was deserved.  After all, February had no baseball, no football, no college basketball tournaments and no NBA or NHL playoffs.

  • Sports commentary: The Lost Weekend

     

    Why can't we point out the obvious?

    That was a bad Super Bowl.

    Unless you're a die-hard Seahawks fan, have a burning hatred of the Broncos or had a wad of cash riding on a Seattle win, there was little to like about Sunday's Super Bowl.

    It got so bad that the wife and I actually started switching between the game and a flick on Turner Classic Movies.

    The movie was "The Lost Weekend."  It's a beaut, starring Ray Miland as a drunk who is out on a life-altering toot.

  • 'X-Men' show what they're made of

     

    The Jefferson Forest wrestling team's warm-up tee shirts feature a large X on them.

    The symbol is the Roman number which stands for "10."  There are 14 weight classes in high school wrestling.  Jefferson Forest has only been able to fill 10 of them.  The 106, 195, 220 and 285 pound slots have remained vacant for much of the year, and will do so for the post-season.

    That means that the Cavs go into meets short of a full complement by 28.5%.

  • 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.