Sunday, January 02, 2011

Sunday (New Year's) Quickie

It's the final week of the regular season in the NFL, and the day games look to be so drama-free that it's nice to know the night game is a virtual playoff game. Worth watching, especially if the Seahawks become the first team ever to make the playoffs with a sub-.500 record.

TCU rules: What an awesome team, with an awesome story and an awesome attitude about their situation -- willing to celebrate winning the Rose Bowl for its own sake, rather than freaking that they aren't going to get a chance to win a national title.

(That is, unless the AP voters do the right thing and give TCU their half of the national title. It is in the best interests of the sport for voters to nullify any individual feelings they have about the Auburn-Oregon winner and promote TCU as their champ. More on that later this week.)

Otherwise, the storyline was that the Big Ten got clobbered up and down: Wisconsin by TCU, Michigan State by Alabama, Michigan by Mississippi State and -- a bit less egregiously -- Penn State by Florida in Urban Meyer's last game at UF and Northwestern by Texas Tech.

Rich Rodriguez is almost certainly going to get fired from Michigan, leaving two questions: Who replaces him (Jim Harbaugh, if Harbaugh isn't swayed by the pitch to stay in the Bay Area and coach the 49ers) and where RichRod ends up (I'm rooting for Pitt, for the pathos -- wow, that coaching situation there is pretty awful, and it wouldn't surprise me if the AD was tossed out, too.)

NHL Winter Classic: As expected, so much cooler under the lights than during the day. The visuals were stunning -- and that's kind of the point of the NHL's biggest game of the regular season: A showcase for casual (and non-) fans to pique their interest. The Caps' retro jerseys took me back to my childhood of going to games at the old Cap Centre. Huge win for the Caps -- in the absence of a Stanley Cup title, arguably the biggest win the team has had in the Ovie Era.

The Heat's comeback from 20 down against the Warriors to get the win might be my favorite win of their season so far (to the extent I like ANY of their wins, which I really don't). But it shows an interest in Ws that inches them closer to actually being... well, if not likeable than at least respectable.

And that's it for Brett Favre's career. Maybe. Out not with a playoff run -- or even a final start -- but an "inactive" listing and a hazy lingering concussion. Say this: It's close to a no-bullets-left-in-the-gun situation, which is better than quitting after last year's NFC title game loss and lamenting that he had another season in him. (And, aside from the concussion, he probably could have gone these past two weeks.)

I'm quite sure he'll put out signals in July that he's interested in coming back for a team that will have him. Won't believe he's done until next season comes and goes without him playing -- and even then, it's unclear he wouldn't get into shape and try to come back in the fall of 2012. I'm totally serious. This is what Favre has done to us.

-- D.S.

1 comment:

Luke Bell said...

Wisconsin lost by two to the 3rd ranked team in the country, in a game that featured a dropped TD pass and a missed FG for the Badgers. I'd hardly call that "clobbered."

As for the other teams, I think only one was favored to win. The results aren't shocking at all. Using your generalizations, the SEC got clobbered by the ACC.