Thoughts from the weekend…sports and stuff.
> Hats off to Towson University for a terrific basketball season (make that two in a row, actually) that came to an untimely end with yesterday’s 75-71 loss to William & Mary in the CAA semi-finals. It’s tough to beat a team three times in one season, particularly when that team is good, which W&M is, for sure. Easy to say now, since Towson isn’t going to get the chance, but I don’t think they would have gotten by Delaware tonight even if things would have worked out for them against the Tribe.
> The Arena’s debut as the home of the CAA tournament turned out to be a modest success, I thought. The Saturday ticket price of $50.00 (basically an “all-day” pass) was too high, but it’s tough to sell the building on a per-game basis so a one-time price is the easiest way to do it. They need to work on that for next year. I thought the crowds on Saturday and Sunday were decent. Again, for a first-time effort, I gave all of it a passing grade. There are two years remaining on the original “deal” to bring the tournament to Baltimore — it can only get better from here. I’ll say this about Baltimore hosting the event: Inside the building, it felt like something big was going on. Lots of pomp and circumstance. It “looked the part”.
> As is almost always the case anytime something local is going on, WNST was the clear “radio winner” in terms of covering the CAA tournament on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. We had staffers (plural) on site all weekend, blogging, tweeting, etc. It was a laughable ass kicking on Saturday for the Towson-JMU game. We had FOUR folks from WNST there, live, covering the FIRST-EVER CAA tournament game in Baltimore for Towson University, while the FM station in town had ZERO people there. They call themselves “Baltimore’s local sports leader” in station promotional spots, and then not one person from their station covered the biggest college basketball game in Charm City. Yesterday, ONE poor soul from the FM station did venture in for the Towson-William and Mary game. Probably got time-and-a-half.
> It will really get interesting later on this year when 105.7 and/or 1300 AM start broadcasting Towson football and basketball and WNST “out-covers” those two affiliates at the games…like we always do. All hell’s gonna break loose over at CBS Radio when they start telling their on-air folks, “You know, now that we carry the games, the Towson Athletics people are hoping we’ll cover the teams. So…you guys really SHOULD go over to their home games and act interested.” I bet there will be lots of weekend sore throats running through the building next Fall and Winter. As Bart Scott once said: “Can’t Wait!”
> Patrick Reed won his 3rd PGA TOUR event in his last 14 starts on Sunday by capturing the biggest win of his career, the World Golf Championships event at Doral in Miami. The top 50 players in the world were ALL in the field and Reed each of them, yet he evidently ruffled some feathers by saying in his post-round presser, “I’m a top five player in the world.” Twitter and sports sites everywhere where aghast with Reed’s “arrogance”. Arrogance? He has 3 wins in the last eight months. He beat everyone like a drum in college at Augusta State. He’s a stud. What’s he supposed to say afterwards, “I was lucky”? This is like the “Flacco/I’m the best” quote that got our quarterback in hot water two years ago. He was asked where he felt he ranked. He said, “I think I’m the best.” If someone from The Sun or Baltimore Magazine or some other publication asked me to rank the sports radio hosts in Baltimore, I’d answer it by saying, “You mean, rank everyone who’s behind me? Sure, I’ll tell you who’s #2, #3, #4, and so on.” Patrick Reed just beat the best 50 players in the world. I think he can place himself just about wherever he wants on his own list of top 5 players in the world.
> I attended a “Cluster Mission” at my church on Sunday evening. It’s basically a gathering of people from four or five area churches who all sign up for a 3-night session at one of the churches. It turns out that Immaculate Heart of Mary on Putty Hill and Loch Raven Blvd. – where I attend – hosted this first Cluster Mission with last night being the first of the three sessions. Father Jack Mattimore was the featured Priest last night and in his discussion with all of us, he shared a story about the importance of friendship and said, “Interestingly enough, sheep don’t follow the shepherd — sheep are attracted to other sheep. They get herded together by their desire to be with one another. The shepherd is just there to chase any who happen to get wayward back to the flock. Sheep follow sheep.” He then went on to say, “So, I’d ask each of you to invite some of your “sheep” to Monday night’s Cluster Mission here at IHM. Just invite your friends. They might come out. They might not. But at least invite them and see if any want to come with you.” So, that’s what I’m doing now. If you’re reading this, you’re a friend. Come on out tonight at 7pm to IHM for night two of the Cluster Mission. It’s free. It runs until 9pm. They have FREE babysitting, too! You’ll find me in there somewhere and we can talk about the Orioles afterwards. I’m not sure if you heard or not, but they’re going to the World Series this year.