NCAA and news from the past

Published 2:28pm Wednesday, September 5, 2012

This is not a football column, but I had to comment on a couple of interesting tidbits I picked up following the opening of the college football season.

I always get a kick from remarks by sports pundits who often base their predictions on one game. There is no way you can judge how a team will perform during the season regardless of whether that team won or lost Saturday.

I uncovered some interesting remarks by a few internet writers. For instance one blogger wrote “watch out for Urban Myer if he losses three games.” He said “ if that happens he’ll be taking another three weeks off, then he will go see a doctor, and finally try to make a comeback but will decide to wait until next year.” That’s what the former University of Florida coach did his last season with the Gators.

Over at Oklahoma State a writer said, “see I told you so. The big wheels left us out of the BCS picture last year but we showed them this week. We whipped Savannah State 84-0.” Well, that game would compare to the New Orleans Saints playing a high school team.

Way out west at Southern Cal, coach Lane Kiffen had to begin spinning accusations that money did not exchange hands in his program. He had to assure his prime advocate, The Associate Press, that these were only rumors. The Trojans, darlings of the west coast media, will be upended by Oregon later this season and all their polish will evaporate, according to a leading far west writer.

The folks up at Notre Dame are saying “we like the way we play ball in Ireland,” as one writer put it, further stating, “let’s play all games over there beginning at 8 a.m. and let’s play Navy every week.” That was the case for The Fighting Irish Saturday.
Now, a couple of writers really got into it about Alabama and Auburn. One writer, commenting on the Tide’s thrashing of Michigan, said, “ho hum,” indicating it was just as we had expected. Another pundit tried to get “funny” when he pinned his reaction of Auburn’s narrow loss, writing, “crank up the Lowder plane again.” Another pundit feels the Tiger’s young players will benefit from that loss and will steadily build upon it.

One good thing about Auburn is the safe four lane Interstate all the way from Atmore to the Auburn campus. It is very much in contrast to those narrow two-lane highways I traveled to my Alabama alma mater back in the early fifties. Keeping one eye on the road and the other eye on black cows resting on the narrow highways was a task, indeed. That road from Thomaston to Faunsdale was a real nightmare. I think it was near Dayton, a little town on the big curve, where the man from up north hit the cow one night. Not knowing how southern people would respond he was surprised to learn a southern attorney got him a nice sum of money from the owner of the cow.

Then there was this one guy who wagered and lost  $3 million on Michigan to cover the 14-point spread. Don’t you know that money could be put to better use?

As I said one game does not make a season. No matter how good or bad your teams looked this weekend don’t make sudden decisions that this is the way they will perform throughout the season.

Yes, pundits are strange people. Some are hurtful, on purpose I believe, while others do attempt to make radical assessments.
You know, I really don’t know which of the three major networks, ABC, CBS and NBC, is the most liberal.

ABC, for instance, allowed us to hear very small quips of the prayers of Nik Wallenda when he courageously walked the tightrope across Niagara Falls a couple of months ago. I understand he constantly prayed as he made that historical trek. But ABC, in their liberal fashion, blocked out most of those prayers. That event drew record TV viewers.

That family of tightrope walkers dates back to the 1940s. My family and I gazed down that huge gorge near Tallulah Falls, Georgia years ago when we were on vacation. It was at this location in 1970 that Karl Wallenda, Nik’s grandfather walked across that intriguing gorge.

Have you heard of the Alabama Mandatory Liability Law? Well, that’s the law that states Alabama drivers must have liability auto insurance before they can buy a license plate. According to a news release from the Alabama Auto insurance Department this law begins January 1, 2013. Penalties will result in costly fines and possible suspensions to those found in violation of this law. Now you’ll feel more comfortable when driving and knowing all motorists must carry liability insurance.

Area and national TV weather folks are still trying to wipe “eggs from their faces” following their sensationalizing reporting of Hurricane Isaac. To hear them talk one got the impression that this storm could hit as far away as Louisiana and bring destructive winds to Atmore. I made a big mistake listening to them. I bought two generators which are still intact in the boxes they came in. I also bought $60 of gasoline.  But, I can salvage that purchase by pouring the gas in my car tank. That is if I can get someone to help me lift those cans. Did you know a large can of gas is extremely heavy?

More, next week.

Lowell McGill can be reached at

Editor's Picks