Early Spring Musings

A couple of thoughts as I head out for to shoot a feature story on Daniel Hostetler (three sport star for River Hill HS).

I can’t find anyone making much noise about the way Southern Illinois was jobbed last night by the refs in the Sweet 16. Kansas was awarded two points for a slam dunk after the shot clock expired (indisputable) and Saluki guard Jamaal Tatum had a shot goal tended (doubly indisputable) while fouled. Tatum made both free throws leaving him one point shy of what was due. Final score, Kansas 61-58 over SIU. Where’s the outrage?

Orioles Tag Day kicks off tomorrow. It’s a chance for fans to roam Camden Yards and pick out seats for their season ticket packages. The cynic in me views Tag Day as a chance to figure out what seats would best sell to Yankees and Red Sox fans come mid summer. Nine years of losing makes optimism about good times at Oriole Park an awful challenge. Every March I hear from the die-hards and tend to believe some of their “this is the year” rhetoric. And while I actually think this is the best team to take the field in nearly a decade, I refuse to get excited. Been there too many times. My goal remains the same as last year. That the Orioles somehow stay relevant till training camp opens in late July. A feat only accomplished once this decade.

The Maryland women proved exactly how far tremendous talent takes you when not properly motivated. To the 2nd round. Yikes! As brilliant as the 2006 Championship season was, the 2007 campaign left Brenda Frese open to questions about whether cutting down the nets as underdogs was a fluke. Not really fair, and a general rule of thumb says most criticism gets shelved for a five years following a title. But the decision to bench her point guard to start the NCAA Tourney looks really, really, really suspect. Kristi Toliver played like someone possessed in response. Possessed by the ghost of Moses Malone past (NBA’s all time turnover leader). Bowing out early in an event where upsets are so few because the talent’s all bunched at the top should serve as a healthy reminder to get in the gym all off season long.

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