Welcome back. In case you missed it yesterday, please check out my piece in Sunday's New York Times sports section about taking my older son to his first hoops game. More on that later today.
Wow: That was a hell of a weekend in sports.
Today's SN column leads with Tiger. Of course it does. The Tebow Swamp finale was great and the Favre-for-NFL-MVP bandwagon is more crowded than ever, but this Tiger story is THE story.
But my point is: Not that you'll find out what happened.
Normally, I'm all for the school of scandal management that is, basically, "rip the Band-Aid off." You know: The cover-up almost always compounds any fall-out from the original problem.
But with Tiger? He is actually powerful enough -- the most powerful athlete in sports, frankly -- to withstand the scrutiny of neutered newspapers, traffic-hungry TMZ and a sports media oligarchy that really has no interest in messing with one of their biggest cash cows.
Between the long holiday weekend and the nothing-to-see-here-let's-move-on media coverage, Tiger is as close to untouchable as you get in sports. And he is taking full advantage of that.
I mean, it's not like we are without storylines to discuss today:
*Tebow's Swamp finale: Over the top, no question. Even I'll admit that. But it seemed appropriately scaled for the man and moment.
*Meanwhile: Even the biggest cynic can get on board with Florida-Alabama as the Game of the Year... and, I would argue, the biggest game in SEC history.
*Brett Favre for 2009 NFL MVP. The bandwagon is more full than ever. (Hand-in-hand: Percy Harvin for NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year. Feels like a lock.)
*Vince. Young. Wow. Just... wow. The best game of his career, and he did it almost entirely with his arm (certainly that last 99-yard drive). How about VY for MVP?
*My Heisman ballot Top 3 finally includes Tim Tebow -- I held out a reasonably long time, didn't I? But Toby Gerhart has my vote, pending what happens next week in Atlanta.
*I also made a few substantial changes at the top of my BlogPoll ballot: TCU is out at No. 1, replaced by Florida, with Alabama at No. 2, TCU at No. 3 and Texas at No. 4. (I was thoroughly unimpressed by Texas giving up 39 points to Texas A&M.)
*I think that the 0-17 Nets should make their Wednesday night game some sort of crazy celebration -- either of not breaking the record... or of breaking it. If you're going to be epically bad, embrace the novelty.
*The team of the weekend in college hoops.... Florida?! That Michigan State win was -- hmm -- unexpected, to say the least. Not sure I buy this team's prospects for March yet, but if they can beat the Spartans on a neutral court, they should be able to make noise in March.
*I am really glad that the Marlins GM debunked that rumor that he was trading Hanley Ramirez to the Red Sox. That would have been too much to take. (Don't buy that he isn't dealing Josh Johnson... I just think it'll happen at next season's trade deadline.)
There's a ton more in the column today. Check it out here. More later.