Diss & Dat(a): Tuesday’s Riffs

On holiday in the late 80s, I ran into a Memphis State fan.

Who was actually a good dude. True.

When he extolled the virtues of 50s star Win Wilfong, I realized he was a lifer/ acolyte for the Tigers as I was for the Cardinals.

At some point during the good natured back and forth, he said, “You know we always thought the McCrays played for six or seven years.”

“Yeah,” I parried, “we said the same thing about Keith Lee.”

Well, ye followers of collegiate cagers, pigskinners and liberos formerly known as Student Athletes, those snarkisms are now reality.

There’s a tight end on the Miami Hurricane squad whose first collegiate season was 2016.

Utah Utes QB Cam Rising is just a couple of years away from qualifying for a Beehive State pension. His first season was ’18. But, since he sat out the ’19 season after transferring, it’s reported he may very well be eligible for an 8th season in ’25 or whenever.

Yo, Cam, the number for the Social Security Administration is 800.772.1213.

In case you haven’t noticed, their are volcanic eruptions and plate shifts along the fault lines of college sports. The New Madrid Seismic Zone runs right through Memphis. The next Pompeii? Just sayin’.

Of course, I don’t like the changes. But, to use a phrase I really loathe, “It is what it is.” Rollin’ with the punches here.

Besides, putative U of L staring signal caller Tyler Shough, now at his third stop pursuing his higher education degrees, made Stew Mandel’s ’24 Wait They’re Still Playing College Football Team. His first coach at Oregon was Willie Taggert.

Bronconagurskius taketh away, Bronconagurskius giveth.

Here’s a callout you used to hear when entering a stadium (but no longer), “You can’t tell the players without a program.”

 * * * * *

I’m sure I wan’t the only checking every few minutes over the weekend for updates about potential Top 10 transfer Coleman Hawkins’ visit to the Ville.

Apparently he landed in Little Manhattan instead, visiting Kansas State.

Then catching a connecting flight to Baton Rouge to check out the academic situation at Louisiana State University.

A third hand rumor is that he turned down 800 large to ball at UConn of all places.

So, one must surmise that the total number of Benjamins is more important than a university’s curriculum.

He can play. But seems like he might have been a me-first bad fit for PK.

Even in these grass is always greener times, you want kids with a modicum of I want to be here in their personality.

The days of Terry Rozier are no more. When he couldn’t get into Louisville, he went to a prep school for a year to get eligible so he could be a Cardinal.

 * * * * *

Speaking of UConn, I’m among the many who are glad Danny Hurley spurned LaLaLand.

I gotta say though, that offer of 6 years/$70 million, while literally absurd, was contextually far from “massive” as was being initially reported.

 * * * * *

CWS rings more like an ACC/ SEC challenge.

Four schools from the A(&P)CC: Tar Heels, Cavaliers, Wolfpack and Seminoles.

For schools from the League That Cares More (and has more moolah): Volunteers, Gators, Aggies, and for first time ever, the Cats.

That Florida/ Clemson game in the Supers was somethin’ else.

 * * * * *

I am an addicted sports fan. (And movie lover.)

When out to dinner with lifelong friends the other night, one started talking politics.

I immediately put up my hand to nip the conversation in the bud. Life’s too short.

My go to phrase is such encounters is “That’s why I watch sports and movies.” (Tip du Jour: “Hit Man,” a rom com with a twist on Netflix.)

Which is my patented circuitous way of advising I’ve also been watching pucks.

Even I who knows little about the nuances of hockey can appreciate the brilliance of Connor McDavid. But his Oilers are down 0-2 in their quest for Lord Stanley’s Cup.

Yes there is at least a hint of hoops/ pucks connectitude.

Florida Panthers star Mattew Tkachuk (a classic hockey name if ever there was one) was a childhood pal of Jayson Tatum. Went to the same high school.

And, ever the pleasure, Sir Charles Barkley, a longtime declared hockey fan, joined Steve Levy, Mark Messier and PJ Subban during the first intermission report.

He was ON. Of course, the guy’s personality is always cranked to 11.

Immediately he jokingly advised Mark Messier that the former star still owed him $5000.

Apparently when Barkley was still playing, he noticed during a game that Messier was sitting in the front row courtside. During a stoppage, he told the ref he wanted to go over and introduce himself, but was advised not to.

He went anyway, was called for a delay of game, and fined five grand.

Sir Charles: the much needed gift that keeps on giving.

— c d kaplan

3 thoughts on “Diss & Dat(a): Tuesday’s Riffs

  1. In my bio submitted to Leadership Louisville, I claimed Sir Charles as my most admired person. I stand by that statement.

  2. In re: Coleman Hawkins, I concur, Seedy. Chemistry. Maturity. These elements matter a great deal to Coach Kelsey, and I couldn’t be happier after the last half decade. The Chron lists “days until kick-off.” Maybe you might consider “days until tip-off”?

    And Charles Barkley 2024.