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Saturday, Dec. 20, 2014
Controversy mars college playoffs (12/09/14)
The time has come. On Sunday, the NCAA ushered in a new era of college football and presented the nation with the first playoff selections. Making the cut were No. 1 Alabama, No. 2 Oregon, No. 3 Florida State and No. 4 Ohio State. Noticeably absent from the final four were a pair of teams that had dominated the rankings and enjoyed a top 10 spot for much of the year--Baylor and TCU...
Jeter did career the right way (09/28/14)
"And now, the end is here And so I face the final curtain My friend, I'll say it clear I'll state my case, of which I'm certain I've lived a life that's full I traveled each and ev'ry highway And more, much more than this, I did it my way" The words from Frank Sinatra's "My Way" illustrate a black and white caricature depicting Derek Jeter, the man behind the pinstripes in Gatorade's farewell commercial, bidding him adieu as his final year draws to a close...
'Safety' rule is perfect... for catchers (08/07/14)
Professional sports are a physical and often brutal gladatorial spectacle for fans. There's a reason the professional players are paid the big bucks. Before the start of the 2014 MLB season, the league instituted a new rule on home plate collisions, designed to reduce the potential injury to players at home plate...
Finale brings best season in BCS era (01/07/14)
You know what they say, if you're gonna go out, go out with a bang. It seems only fitting that the BCS system, the system that suffered so much criticism and scrutiny for the past 16 seasons deliver perhaps the single greatest bowl season in history...
Jones is just what UT needed (10/08/13)
I've never been one to call for a coach's head relatively early in his tenure. I felt the same way last year when Derek Dooley was still in Knoxville, serving as Tennessee's head coach. After the 41-18 embarrassment against Vanderbilt, there was no denying it--Dooley had to go...
What happened to our heroes? (08/06/13)
What happened to our heroes? I remember growing up and looking up to the greats of the NFL and the MLB--my heroes Barry Larkin and Emmitt Smith. These two guys were two of the very best to ever play their respective games. Not to mention they were class acts off the field too...
Part-timer doesn't need All-Star slot (07/09/13)
It happens every year when it comes time to selecting all stars to play in the MLB All-Star game. No matter the year, the managers, or the players, someone always gets snubbed. While the final ballot gives fans a chance to vote in one player for each the AL and the NL, one name on the final NL ballot has this sports writer scratching his head--Yasiel Puig...
American consumes all comers (07/05/13)
Every Fourth of July consists of cookouts, fireworks, and hotdogs. So it makes sense to keep with American traditionalism with the Nathan's Famous Hotdog Eating contest on Coney Island, New York. And for the past seven years, there has been no competition with American Joey Chestnut dominating the annual hotdog eating affair...
Living the dream in Reds' dugout (06/06/13)
Ever have a dream as a young kid? Most youngsters dream about hitting a game-winning shot at the buzzer for their favorite professional basketball team, or scoring the game winning touchdown, or even hitting a walk-off home run. As we grow older, we as adults tend to lose focus of those dreams and begin to focus on our realistic aspirations and focus on making a common living...
The good ole days (06/02/13)
I've always been about the simple things in life. Whether going to visit family, friends, or whatever, the small things have always mattered most to me. Growing up, a few of those little things always consisted of riding shotgun with my dad or my grandpa, usually to our favorite fishing hole...
Graduation is your new beginning (05/17/13)
Another year has come and gone. Tonight, Community High School will start graduation weekend, with Cascade and Shelbyville Central to follow tomorrow. Throughout the year, all three schools have had tremendous performances from the athletic programs...
'42' perfectly portrays a true American hero (04/17/13)
Baseball is America's pasttime. It's a rather simple game that's produced countless heroes over the generations it's been played. But perhaps there is no greater hero to have ever played the game than Jackie Robinson--the man who broke the racial boundary in America's beloved sport...
Scandal reignites national debate (04/05/13)
With the latest reports surfacing of the 2010 Auburn Tiger football team receiving money to play football, the national debate has been once again been ignited: Should NCAA athletes receive monetary compensation for their efforts in their respective sports?...
New power shocks the big names (03/27/13)
Chances are, before the NCAA tournament began, you probably never heard of Florida Gulf Coast University. Now here we are in the Sweet 16 round of the Big Dance and just about everybody has had their bracket impacted by the No. 15 seed upsetting the No. 2 Georgetown Hoyas in the opening round of the tournament...
Penalties should be equal for offenders (02/20/13)
As the winter season fades into the blossom of spring with the turn of a calendar, sports enthusiasts know one thing--baseball is right around the corner. Already, pitchers and catchers have reported for spring training to loosen up and reacquaint themselves with their respective positions...
Does Notre Dame's meltdown signal problem with BCS? (01/08/13)
Monday night's BCS National Championship left everyone wondering one thing -- What happened to Notre Dame in the last month? The Alabama Crimson Tide (13-1, 7-1 SEC) proved without a doubt they are the best team in the land with a dominating 42-14 win over the Fighting Irish on Monday night...
Reds make real pitch to repeat title (12/13/12)
The Major League Baseball offseason means one thing--changes are coming. Teams shuffle around rosters, lineups, rotations, sign free agents and waive players. While virtually every team is making moves, the Cincinnati Reds' moves are making the headlines...
Best part of hunting not always catch (11/27/12)
Thanksgiving means two things in my family -- grandma's pumpkin pie and deer season. Last week, I took some time and went back to my roots in West Virginia to visit some family and friends to celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday. But for the week prior to turkey day, it's open season on deer...
Dooley or Bray: Who's the real problem? (11/15/12)
It's no secret to any Tennessee Volunteer fan. Ole Rocky Top just hasn't been the same in the last few years and virtually everybody in the state has no trouble with pointing a finger at Lane Kiffin, who gutted the team of talent when he skipped town after one season and headed for "greener pastures" at USC...
Vols in trouble following big loss to Gators? (09/18/12)
KNOXVILLE -- Tennessee's loss to the Florida Gators was anything but pretty. The Vols were outscored 27-6 in the second half, despite a solid start. The wheels came flying off Tennessee's offense in the second half when Vol quarterback Tyler Bray threw a pass to a nice plot of Tennessee turf and picked up an intentional grounding penalty. Things only got worse from there...
Football is back: Are you ready? (08/17/12)
A light flickers as the hum of stadium lights illuminate a dark field, shedding life on a new season. In the distance the unifying sound of a brigade of marching band members file into the stadium. All is quiet in the musty locker rooms filled with the stinging stench of sweat from the countless hours of summer preparations...
Let the Games begin (07/27/12)
This evening, the finest athletes the United States has to offer will march into the Olympic Stadium, showcasing the Red, White, and Blue. It's probably the single most admirable moment an athlete can experience, other than actually winning a gold medal...
Olympic tryouts yield truly fierce competition (07/01/12)
As the summer marches on, sports enthusiasts find a bit of a lull in different sports to follow. Currently, NASCAR and the MLB are about the only domestic professional sports making the headlines these days. But every four years, fans are graced with some of the top echelon of sportsmanship and athleticism...
Finally, we get playoffs (06/29/12)
It's about time the college officials made the decision to go to some form of a playoff in the postseason. After all the hoopla about the BCS being the perfect system and whatnot, it's refreshing to know the FBS brass have settled on a system. In 2014, we'll finally get a glimpse of what so many of us have hoped for years -- a four team playoff...
LeBron meltdown inevitable? (06/14/12)
Everyone knows LeBron James' issues with a strong fourth quarter performance. Are we on the verge of seeing LeBron's inability to secure a championship ring take center stage in the NBA Finals for the second year in a row? This probably wouldn't be newsworthy had LeBron not stolen the center spotlight two years ago with his "Decision" which aired on ESPN about his choice to leave Cleveland and head to Miami to team up with Chris Bosh and Dwayne Wade to form the "Big Three."...
New Orleans wins lottery, No. 1 pick (05/31/12)
After helping lead Kentucky to a national championship, Anthony Davis, the predicted No. 1 NBA draft pick, is more than likely headed to New Orleans following Wednesday's lottery selections. But there comes one huge problem with Wednesday's lottery. The Charlotte Bobcats, who turned in one of the worst records in history in 2011-2012, missed out on the No. 1 pick...
Words of advice for the Class of 2012 (05/22/12)
Nearly eight months ago I took a leap of faith and moved nearly 500 miles away from virtually everything I've known. It was a chance to pursue my dream and further my career, and honestly, it has been one of the best decisions of my life. Since my time here in Shelbyville, I've not only been an outsider looking in at all the games I've covered, but honestly felt myself becoming a part of the community...
Cats' win solidifies demise of NCAA (04/04/12)
As the final buzzer sounded in Monday's NCAA championship, the sounds of victory rang all throughout Lexington. But that sound of victory echoed throughout the nation sounded much more like the agonizing death of a once beloved sport. That's right. John Calipari's squad has ultimately secured the death of what was a beloved sport...
Next step for Peyton? (03/09/12)
Flash back two years. Brett Favre was dancing around center stage of all the media coverage, toying with everybody as to whether or not he would return to the NFL. After three "retirements" he finally hung it up, but only after an injury plagued his final season in Minnesota...
America's pasttime is back (03/04/12)
It's already here. That special time of the year when players take to the diamond in America's pasttime. It's already started for middle school teams in the area. Just the other night I sat in the crisp, cool night air, camera and bag of barbecue sunflower seeds in tow, and settled in for a the Cascade Middle season opener...
Daytona, Twitter and the Great Inferno (03/01/12)
It's been a few days for us to digest the aftermath of the weirdest and strangest Daytona 500 in the history of NASCAR--if not the weirdest NASCAR race in general. What started as a rain delay on Sunday led to a 24 hour postponement and another delay until 7 p.m. on Monday night...
Daytona signals start of NASCAR season (02/24/12)
"Boogity, Boogity, Boogity! Let's go racin' boys!" The most famous words in NASCAR are about to be bellowed out once more, signaling the start of a new season. The new season officially kicks off on Sunday with the running of the sport's most recognized race on the sport's most recognized track -- the Daytona 500...
Tennis stars step up to center stage (01/19/12)
We all know of the stars of professional athletics--the "poster boys" of their particular sports. Tom Brady represents the face of the NFL, much like Kobe Bryant does the NBA, Tiger Woods the PGA, and Derek Jeter for the MLB. What a lot of people seem to neglect is professional tennis. And until last year I also was included in the group that shrugged the sport off...
Bama wins stinker title game (01/12/12)
What a bore. I thought the bowl games were supposed to be exciting. Well, with the exception of the BCS National Championship game, they were pretty fun to watch--even bowls with the teams I can't stand. First off, probably the best game in the bowl season to watch had to be the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl. ...
Monday's bowl games deliver great matchups (01/03/12)
I've said it before and I'll say it again. I think the BCS is a sham for matching up the teams that should be playing for a national title. HOWEVER, the matchups we got on Monday in the various bowl games around the country have possibly provided some of the most exciting college football we've seen in years...
Mile-high miracles (12/15/11)
A few years ago when Tim Tebow was the driving force behind an unstoppable Florida Gator football team, I found myself on the "hating Florida" bandwagon, simply because they were at the top. I found myself wishing Tebow would blow plays, get knocked out of the game, etc. for no justifiable reason, other than the fact he was the epitome of greatness at the college level. He did things I wish that teams could have stopped. But they couldn't...
BCS draws criticism for title showdown (12/06/11)
Only in the BCS system can a team with one loss not play for its own conference championship but earn a berth in the BCS National Championship game. This season makes the case and point why the BCS has got to go. There's no question LSU has earned its spot in the title game. The Bayou Bengals have established themselves as the true No. 1 team in the nation with an impressive 13-0 overall record and an 8-0 SEC record...
It's Tebow Time! Win quiets some critics (11/20/11)
Ever since Denver boss John Fox has opted for Tim Tebow to take the helm of the Broncos, criticism of both the decision to give him the start and Tebow's actual skill have grown exponentially. Everywhere you look, someone is dogging Tebow, saying he can't cut it with the big boys...
Chance for Vols to salvage year rests on final 2 games (11/17/11)
With two games left on the schedule, it appears a losing season is all but inevitable for the 2011-2012 season for the Tennessee Volunteers. The Vols have struggled all year in the SEC, posting an 0-6 record in the conference so far. Tennessee has a chance to rise to .500 on the season if the Volunteers can fend off in-state rival Vanderbilt and follow up with a win over Kentucky, both of which are also struggling this season...
Vols' young gun brings the heat (11/09/11)
For pretty much the entire season, the Vols have been bitten by the injury bug. First, the Vols lost of wide receiver wide receiver Justin Hunter in the 33-23 loss to Florida and then the loss of Tyler Bray, who broke his thumb against Georgia. And for the most part, it's all been downhill from there...
Say it ain't so, Al! (10/25/11)
It's no secret Albert Pujols is one of the best baseball players to ever play the game. There's no arguing the three-time National League MVP adds to the batting rotation, and can field a ball. But Pujols lacks one thing when it comes to being remembered as one of the greats -- class...
Garcia saga symptom of bigger problem (10/13/11)
By now, news of Stephen Garcia's departure from the University of South Carolina has spread far and wide. Garcia was dismissed from the team after failing a substance abuse test for alcohol, which was part of the terms agreed upon by Garcia and team officials after being reinstated to the team for a fifth time...
Are you ready for some PC? (10/11/11)
Hank Williams Jr.'s iconic song has been played for Monday Night Football since 1989. Well that came to a screeching halt last week when ESPN decided to part ways with ole Hank after some rather controversial remarks concerning President Obama and a comparison to Adolf Hitler...
Conference realignments on hold...for now (09/22/11)
We've all heard it by now. Texas A&M to join the SEC. Pitt and Syracuse are joining the ACC. When will it all stop? Unfortunately, not anytime soon. This mass movement of schools jumping ship is occurring all around the nation. In five years the major Division I conferences will look nothing like they do now...
Chris Siers
The Extra Point
Chris Siers is sports editor of the Times-Gazette.