Having been surrounded by Pittsburgh Steelers football all week on radio row, you’d think I would be the first guy to scream, “PLEASE, ARIZONA…PLEASE BEAT THOSE BLACK AND GOLD RAT FINKS!”
But, I don’t feel that way.
I really don’t care one way or the other who wins today in Tampa, but I can give you a good reason why – in Baltimore – we should be OK with it all if Pittsburgh does come out on top: it reduces their chances of winning the Super Bowl next year.
Think about it. How hard is it to win back to back Super Bowls? Since 1990, it’s only been done 3 times.
I’ll take those odds.
So, if Pittsburgh wins today, they won’t win the whole thing again next season. I’d make that bet in a heartbeat.
And, that means one less team we have to worry about being in the way of the Ravens in 2009.
For the record, by the way, I’m calling it Pittsburgh 27-Arizona 24.
I’d say “I hope I’m wrong…” – but maybe I’d rather not be.
> The Australian Open Final between Nadal and Federer was tremendous…but it was a little sad to see Federer throw in the towel like that in the 5th set. Even when Nadal lost the 4th set, 6-3, he made Federer battle for every point. Once Rafa broke Federer’s serve in the 5th set, Roger packed it in. One thing for sure right now: Nadal has Federer’s number. And don’t look now, but they both have major title wins on three different surfaces. Federer lacks only a win at Roland Garros (French) to complete the career Grand Slam, while Nadal needs to triumph at Flushing Meadows (U.S. Open) to wrap up his Grand Slam. I wonder how important it is to Federer to win the French before Rafa wins in New York? We’ll see in May.
> Start saving your money now for NHL playoff tickets in Washington. How many highlight-reel game-winning goals has Ovechkin scored this year? I can think of four off the top of my head. Most players would give their right leg to have four game-winners in a season…let alone the kind of goals The Great 8 has scored to win games for Washington this year. Have you seen the goal he scored yesterday in their win over Detroit? Here it is. What can you say? The guys is…well…he’s…GREAT.
> A nice win for Maryland last night over Miami and they fulfilled my early-week prediction that the Terps would win one and lose one in that brief two-game homestand. At 3-4 in ACC play, Maryland still needs to somehow get to that 9 win regular season total in conference play to finish with 20 wins and a shot at the NCAA Tournament. Looking at their remaining schedule, I don’t see how Maryland gets six more wins unless they win two of the five remaining games against the league’s best four teams: North Carolina (2), Duke, Wake Forest and Clemson. They could go 0-5 in those, unfortunately…but they won’t. Can they get to 20 wins? Probably not.
> Towson continues to struggle at home in CAA play, as the Tigers dropped a 60-53 decision to a surprisingly good Drexel team yesterday before 2,900 at the Towson Center. The Tigers (3-8/CAA) are just 1-5 at home in conference play and are in danger of finishing 10th or 11th in the CAA if they don’t string together some wins down the stretch. Towson’s problems are similar to that of Maryland: no big guy, no one under the basket to fight for the ball on either end of the court, and, ultimately, no one the other team has to work hard to take out of the game.
> I’ll be at the RAC Arena on Monday night for the annual visit from Boston University and their animated Head Coach, Dennis Wolff. B.U. is one of the America East’s best programs and UMBC will have their hands full on Monday night. The Retrievers are coming off of a 1-point loss at Stony Brook on Saturday night. If you’re coming out on Monday night, e-mail me (firstname.lastname@example.org) and we’ll have a soft drink together before the game.
> I don’t ever get excited about early-season golf on the PGA Tour, but I see that Kenny Perry is leading the tournament in Arizona by one shot going into the final round. I doubt I’ll watch it today. But Kenny Perry is a helluva player. There’s your golf coverage.
> Is the third time the charm? Twice in the last month, I’ve contacted the Orioles to see if they’ll make room for me in Ft. Lauderdale and allow me to broadcast my morning show from their spring training site in late February. I still haven’t heard from them (maybe they’re evaluating the hordes of media folks who are applying for spring training credentials?) so I’ll reach out to them ONE more time this week and see if we can make it happen.
Have a great Sunday…