February 01, 2023
Several issues have arisen since last we gathered that remind me of the futility of my humble well-intended efforts for the past 23+ years.
I have known from Day One that my role here is / forever shall be “to joust with windmills” … as did Cervantes’ legendary knight errant Don Quixote de La Mancha.
“When life itself seems lunatic, who knows where madness lies? Perhaps to be too practical is madness. To surrender dreams — this may be madness. Too much sanity may be madness — and maddest of all: to see life as it is, and not as it should be!”
As Quixote chose windmills as his “giants” to vanquish … I choose “board monkeys” to personify the lunacy that has taken over “sports” – and perhaps “society” in general – in America. Never losing sight of the reality that there are ….. sooo many windmills.
And, alas, there will still be soooo many windmills when that day doth come to dismount my noble steed and to lay down my shield and lance …….. but Today is NOT “that day” so … ONWARD Noble Steed … Into The Fray!
In my half century plus of following “sports” I have NEVER …
paid any attention whatsoever – cared in the slightest- who was announcing the game. I appreciate that sports broadcasters are a MAJOR irritant to a great many fans. “Appreciating” and understanding being mutually exclusive.
I suppose the same way-over-caffeinated folks that HATE rival fans … rival coaches … rival players … all sports administrators … and, Of Course, any and all officials – referees – umpires – et al (more on them later) … would also HATE sports broadcasters too.
Thankfully their HATE ammo tends to run out before they get to cheerleaders and “the church volunteers manning the concession stands”.
I’m not totally innocent. In high school I really disliked one particular basketball ref that everyone in Kinston was convinced was “agin us”. He had a pompadour haircut so we called him “Liberace”. We went 51-1 over two years with back-to-back state championships so if “Liberace” was “agin’ us” we overcame it.
Around 1971-72, UNCCH was playing Florida State in the Final Four semi-finals. FSU upset the Tar Heels rather handily. Curt Gowdy was calling the game and persisted in extolling the fine play of “little Otto Petty” a heretofore anonymous FSU point guard. 50+ years later, I’ve never forgotten or forgiven Gowdy.
Those are the only two instances I can recall in my long fan life where I behaved irrationally … i.e. “like most folks”. As I no longer consider myself “a sports fan” I guess those will be the only two I must atone for with St Peter.
Last week’s passing of Billy Packer got a more humane general reaction than I would have expected. I expected a “good riddance” response. Maybe there is some hope … or not.
“Joe Buck” seems to be THE most universally unpopular sports announcer of this millennium for reasons I’ll never understand ??? Even grandmommas and maiden aunts HATE Joe Buck ??? I don’t.
I figure Troy Aikman Hate is just a form of Cowboy-Hate which is pandemical across America except in Dallas. Never understood that either.
I did grow tired of Dickie V’s schtick some years ago; but I know he is a “good man”. I no longer follow college basketball, so he is no longer a concern if he ever was. Same with Bill Walton.
Back when I watched “ballgames” I never once factored in “who is calling the game” when deciding to watch it. Apparently some hard cases actually do do that.
I “get” why rival fans HATE “Voices of _____” of their hated rivals. Hated rivals hate each others bell towers (???) so for sure they would hate their respective overtly partisan announcer. Begging the question WHY ARE YOU LISTENING TO THEIR “VOICE OF” RATHER THAN YOU OWN “VOICE OF”?
I’ll never forget a comment from a UNCCH partisan upon the retirement of Woody Durham.
“I don’t know what I’ll do without Woody. He is the only one we can depend on to ‘tell it like it really is’.”
I showed that to Woody and he even laughed. That clueless fan probably breeds and maybe even votes … which might explains why America is staring into The Abyss. Wanna bet she watches The View?
If I have to fathom a guess about “WHY Announcer Hate” I’d say it is an extension of the vapid empty lives of board monkeys who all want “a really cool job in sports making mega-$$$ … getting into big games free … and maybe getting to meet Erin Andrews”.
Finishing 4th in your 7-man fantasy league three years in a row and having 1,000 ALL CAPS posts on a message board certainly qualifies one for “a really cool job in sports making mega-$$$” … right?
Before I forget …
Mack2.0’s whining about UNCCH’s 2023 Football schedule being “unfair” is a bad … and rather sad … look. Not as inflammatory, perhaps, as the UNCCH WBB coach’s blurt a year ago … or Drake Maye’s “ouch” last August, but, Mack2.0 shoulda known better.
FWIW: Mack2.0’s whine did NOT mention the foul disparity in UNCCH’s recent BB win over NCSU.
The Franklin Street bobbleheads will no doubt agree with Mack and will claim that current ACC Commissioner WhatsHisName who is NOT a UNCCH alum or former UNC player &/or former UNC AD – is purposely plotting against UNC. Don’t expect ANY sympathy beyond the city limits of Chapel Hill.
OMG! Another NFL Refs Kerfluffle … sigh.
I noted above about sports fans’ HATE targets. “The $%^&# Refs” have been an easy target for fans’ wrath since probably the first Olympics back in Greece … certainly as long as there have been competitive sports in America. … and always WILL be so long as “human beings” are involved in adjudicating games.
I did not watch any NFL regular season games but since last year’s playoffs were so entertaining I did try to watch the NFL Playoffs. This years’ games were not all that compelling but were quite controversial.
One goober on Facebook was emphatic that “the Refs” didn’t “used to be” so controversial. I told him that Lennie Wirtz, Karl Hess, Ron Cherry, Jim Knight and “Cowboy Joe” West sure would be glad to hear that …. BOINK!
DID YOU KNOW … the number of sports fans who can correctly explain either “intentional grounding”, “roughing the kicker” or “the infield fly rule” is even fewer than how many members of Congress can find Ukraine on a globe?
The number of fans who can explain two of those three rules is statistically zero.
A quick scan of ANY sports website and/or sports talk show this week, reveals that 106% of pro football fans outside of Greater Kansas City are convinced that “the $#*@^& Refs” were told to be sure the Chiefs win no matter what you have to do … wink, wink.
One theory is that “the big black ref’s” family was being held hostage in the backroom of a Las Vegas Jersey Mike’s to ensure that the Chief’s won. Imagine the media OUTRAGE if he had been a heterosexual white guy !!! YOWSA!
ASIDE: Raise your hand if you know that all the cops involved in that Memphis incident are BLACK. If you do know that you do not get your “news” from “the networks”. … sigh.
When asked “What to do about NFL refs?” … the really lamebrains scream FIRE’EM ALL but have no clue who to replace them with.
DID YOU KNOW: The NFL requires that an official have at least 10 years of officiating football before being considered to be an NFL official. Out of those 10 years, at least five of them must include major college games.
“Replaying EVERY call and every no-call” will extend the length of each game by 18-24 hours which would be good for concession sales and babysitters paid by the hour but not really feasible.
“Make them full-time employees” is a popular answer but does not seem to help with MLB umpires, NBA refs or NHL linesmen … all of whom ARE full-time and also suffer extreme fan abuse.
89% of sports fans will NEVER be convinced that “the @#$%^ Refs” are indeed impartial and simply “call’em as they see’em”. Just as they did for decades before Instant Replay.
That the refs are told in advance by some unknown sinister “they” which team is suppose to win is permanently ingrained in America’s sports psyche. Far be it for yours truly to tinker with America’s sports psyche.
Alls I will say is … Every WWE wrestling match IS scripted. The refs know the winners are predetermined. All but the most doltish wrestling fan knows that. It does not seem to effect pro wrestling’s popularity. Which also explain why there is no betting line for pro wrestling.
Try this … put “sports’ refs” and “sports announcers” in the same file with “husbands who don’t put the toilet seat down” and “wives who are backseat drivers”. Be bigger than such trivial little matters. ……. Or take up Fishing where there are No Refs.
“Judge a guy / gal by the magnitude of what in Life they allow to upset them.”