Midweek Thoughts

by

By: Nate Jervey
Assistant Sports Information Director

If only Punxsutawney Polamalu had been correct and there were indeed six more weeks of football I would be beyond thrilled. Sadly, Punxsutawney Polamalu does not even exist and the end of football season is upon us following what was one of the better Super Bowls that I can recall seeing.

I am a diehard Chicago sports fan, so I really had no rooting interest in the game. On the one hand, I like Peyton Manning and think that he has always been a class act on and off the field. He will be remembered as one of the greatest football players to ever don a uniform when it is all said and done. He also has some underrated comedic chops (see the episode of SNL that he hosted…comedic gold).

On the other hand, I can appreciate the impact that the Saints have had on the city of New Orleans and what that football team means to people in that community and beyond. Also Drew Brees went to Purdue and I remember watching him in his college days and being from Michigan I have some Big 10 allegiances to consider.

I was glad that the game became close following the Colts scoring 10 quick points. New Orleans’ Head Coach Sean Payton also has some series nerves as the decision to attempt an onside kick to open the second half was brilliant. Too bad that the game was decided on a poor play by the greatest quarterback of our generation, but Peyton should have known better. Tracy Porter was the same dude that picked off Brett “Will I, or won’t I come back” Favre to seal the Saints’ win over Minnesota in the NFC Championship game. I don’t know if I believe in destiny or anything but even I know that you don’t throw the ball at a guy that has this haircut.

If the game was pretty exciting and thoroughly enjoyable, I must say that the other reason that I watched was for the commercials and I gotta say that I was pretty disappointed with them. E*TRADE’s “milkaholic” commercial was decent. Betty White saying “that’s not what your girlfriend said” was classic and the baby telling his mother’s potential suitor to keep his hands off his mom and his Doritos was pretty solid. Other than that, it was a pretty weak lineup I thought. Additionally, did anybody else notice that the commercials seemed to be grouped together? There was the break with both the Dockers “no pants” commercial, which followed the casual Friday commercial. Ok I get it, they aren’t wearing any pants. Do we really need back-to-back commercials of middle-aged men running around in their superhero underoos? Talk about a wardrobe malfunction. There were also commercial breaks that featured back-to-back commercials with people getting slapped (I can’t recall the exact commercials) and consecutive commercials with little people in them, one of which was the KISS commercial. It was just something that we noticed watching the game and found a little annoying.

Now that football has officially ended, it is time for NFL fans to gear themselves up for the combine (surprisingly watchable), the draft (in prime time no less), free agency (Julius Peppers anyone?) and training camp. My least favorite thing about the offseason is undoubtedly going to be Brett Favre Retirement Watch Aught-10. This promises to be more less intriguing than last season’s watch and perhaps even more exciting pointless than the original. Its not often that a saga’s sequels live up to the billing of the first (i.e. The Fast and the Furious franchise), however America seems to get more and more wrapped up in the career choice of a 40-year old recovering alcoholic and drug addict with each passing year. Personally, I don’t see it. Favre is great, no question, but I have more important things to do than sit on pins and needles about his decision to return or retire. For those of you that can in fact sit on pins and needles (painful I would imagine), more power to you and be sure to let me know on opening day what he decided.

Football has ended, but it is not the end of the world guys. March Madness is drawing near, pretty soon we will be hearing one of the greatest phrases in sports “Pitchers and catchers report,” and I suppose if you aren’t into baseball or basketball you could (heaven forbid) follow hockey. Rachel told me in the office the other day that the Canadiens’ General Manager had stepped down. My first reaction was to ponder why Canada had a general manager. Next, I pondered how one becomes a general manager of an entire country. Lastly, I wondered where Canada’s GM would rank in comparison to the country’s Prime Minister and other political offices. It was then that I realized that she was not speaking of a country, but in fact the Montreal Canadiens’s of the National Hockey League. Apparently, there is this sport called “hockey” and in said sport one glides around on knives fastened to one’s shoes with the apparent goal (no pun intended) of putting a black piece of rubber into the net that is being defended by Jason from Friday the 13th. Apparently, Rachel is a big fan of this relatively unknown sport and I guess Canada plays a lot of it. Who knew?

College basketball is heating up, with this week being the proclaimed “Rivalry Week.” You know the drill, Duke-UNC, Texas-Kansas, Syracuse-UConn., Michigan State-Purdue. Some pretty good basketball on the rest of the week, not to mention the W&L women’s team hosting Emory & Henry tonight (Tuesday) at 7:00 pm in the Warner Center as well, so there should be some decent sporting events to catch in the absence of football.

Tough game for W&L men’s hoops on Monday night. The Generals rallied from 15 points down with 15 minutes to play and pulled within one point on two different occasions in the final minutes, but could not quite get over the hump and they ultimately fell, 56-53, to No. 18 Randolph-Macon. Sitting at 13-7 overall and 5-6 in the ODAC, the Generals still have an outside shot at cracking the Top 4 in the league and with four different teams boasting six or seven league losses, and R-MC having four league losses, it is going to be a mad dash to the finish as the ODAC prepares for its annual conference tournament at the Salem Civic Center. Highlights from last night’s game included a pretty solid ally-oop from first-year guard Jeremy Adkins to senior forward Zac White. Adkins must really like playing R-MC, as he scored 14 points in his first career start when W&L defeated the Yellow Jackets two weeks ago, then last night he tops that with a game-high 15 points. It definitely appears that Jeremy Adkins doesn’t mind seeing the Yellow Jackets on the schedule. Also, Head Coach Adam Hutchinson secured his 100th career victory not too long ago and he is currently fourth all-time at Washington and Lee with 67 victories.

Anyway, its snowing once again and if you planning on going out and about use caution. Be sure to check out the pair of W&L women’s basketball home games this week (Tuesday at 7:00 pm and Saturday at 2:00 pm) and do not miss next Monday’s men’s basketball home game as they host Guilford College. That would be the No. 1 Guilford Quakers, the best team in the country according to people that know more about such things than I. Alright, enough rambling for me. Enjoy the snow and be sure to make it out to the Warner Center this week.

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