Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Sports this 'n' that

College basketball lost two of its all time great coaches within the last four days.

On Saturday night, Dean Smith, who led future NBA stars Michael Jordan, Sam Perkins, & James Worthy to a national title in the early 80's, passed away at 83. Three nights later, Jerry Tarkanian, a man who was, basically, Smith's polar opposite, a rebel who did things his way at Long Beach State, Fresno State, and Nevada-Las Vegas, winning a national title in 1990, and losing to Duke in the finals a year later, succumbed at 84. While Georgetown icon John Thompson was known for carrying a towel on his shoulder, Tarkanian did him one better, and chewed on the towel during games. Both Smith & Tarkanian will be missed.

Hindsight being what it is, maybe people are now wishing that Mo'Ne Davis and her Little League All-Stars from Philadelphia had reached the championship game after all in last year's World Series.

That's because Jackie Robinson West Little League of Chicago was stripped of the US title when it was proven that league officials had tampered with boundary rules in order to recruit kids from outside their district, just so they could have a "super team", one that ultimately lost the World Series finale nearly six months ago.

It's not the fault of the kids, but rather the greedy, self-serving suits in charge of the league. The manager has been suspended indefinitely for his part, and it's doubtful that JRWLL will even be eligible for the regional tournaments this year. Now, these talented kids, as they move on to the next level, have to work twice, maybe ten times, as hard to prove themselves, and erase the stigma of their mentors' dirty pool.

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