Tag Archives: basketball

Wanna Bet?

19 Mar

Warren Buffet, Quicken Loans and Yahoo Sports are teaming up to offer 1 billion dollars to the first sports enthusiast to correctly pick a perfect bracket of winners for the upcoming NCAA Basketball Tournament. However, They are limiting the number of contestants to 15 million and should more than one sports enthusiast win, then they will have to split the prize.

But, I wouldn’t worry about that because the odds of picking 63 tournament games correctly are…

9.2 quintillion-to-1!

But that’s if you are just guessing, otherwise, if you know something about NCAA basketball, experts say that your odds increase to…

128 billion- to-1!…So it is possible.

But, no one has ever had a perfect bracket in over 30 million entries in the ESPN competition, which began in 1998…So, it’s a pretty safe bet that this is just a gigantic publicity stunt and an attempt to entice some folks to refinance their homes with a Quicken Loan, while they attempt to fill out their brackets on-line.

But, let’s just say that just one someone…perhaps myself…has picked 62 games correctly… and now with just 1 game to go between the 2 remaining teams, say, Boondock College Vs. MegaState University, and all the world focuses on…ME… to see whether or not I will become an overnight billionaire! And it all hinges on one game! Winner take all! Loser gets Nada. What Hoopla! What Excitement!

And here’s why that could never happen.

If I need Boondock College to win the game so I can become a billionaire all I have to do is to announce that if I win, every player on Megastate U. will get 1 million dollars, and I’ll even throw in 10 million dollars to the University to use for scholarships or bills or whatever…and to be completely fair and magnanimous, I’ll announce the same largess to the Boondock College players and university; A benevolent gift for all involved…as long as I win of course… because I won’t be a billionaire should I lose will I?

I won’t be asking anyone to lose on purpose or not play fair or even suggest anything improper or out of the ordinary. I will just make known my planned generosity should I win the final game of my bracket. I’ll even put in in writing. A total of about 50 million dollars in gifts to all players and both Colleges involved in this most momentous event…after all I stand to win 1,000 million so what’s 50 give or take?

Of course once I do that, everyone in the USA and world for that matter, will bet on Boondock College to win. How could they lose? That would mean that Las Vegas would have to immediately cancel all betting and Warren Buffet might as well just get out his check book and start writing and the NCAA would probably just cancel the game anyway because what a circus this would become…heck, I might as well just make my announcement when I get to the final 4. That would be a 100 million dollar pledge on a 1,000 million dollar win so…maybe I’ll just do it when I get to the elite 8? Then 200 gets me 1,000. How about the sweet 16?

In any event, 1 billion dollars is a lot of money and sooner or later I’m betting that the NCAA would just have to shut down the tournament and send the students back to class. (Did I just use NCAA, students and class all in the same sentence?) Anyway, 1 billion dollars may not be a lot of money to Yahoo, Quicken Loans, Warren Buffet or, sadly, even the NCAA… but to us regular folks and poor college athletes, I’m pretty sure it could buy a lot of good will and some creative play making in the final stages of the… “tournament”.

What do you think?

Call Me Ishmael

5 Jun


This may be a bit of a departure from my title but…

What’s happened to the NBA?

Does anyone out there like basketball? Is anyone out there a real student of the game?

If so, has anyone noticed what I have noticed over the last decade or so?

What happened to dribbling?

And I don’t mean keeping the Gatorade from spilling down your chin after a long winded and grueling stretch of playing the game…I mean the kind of dribbling that involves bouncing the ball with your hand (only one at a time) while moving up and down the basketball court…you know, the most fundamental skill involved in playing the game of basketball.

Why are today’s NBA players allowed to carry the ball around the court like it’s a piece of luggage or a new style of men’s handbag?

Has anyone else noticed this but me?

Remember when you had to bounce the ball with your hand on top of the ball? And how that was pretty difficult, especially if you wanted to use your other hand…the one that wasn’t very good at doing anything? And remember how whenever you thought you’d try to put your hand under the ball and roll it over to the top just to make it a little easier someone would blow a whistle and charge you with traveling, or “palming the ball” or “carrying the ball” and that would be what was called a turnover and so the ball would be unceremoniously taken from you and given to the other team?

Watch an old NBA video of Bob Cousy or Jerry West or Walt Frazier bringing the ball up the court and you’ll positively die laughing at how silly they look doing all of that old fashioned “dribbling”…go ahead I dare you.

Then watch today’s NBA players…Is it just me or do they all look like NASCAR automobiles out for a ride while holding a ball out the side window on their way to a 10 car pileup underneath the basket? And if that isn’t bad enough, Then it’s off for a free-throw where they pause to catch their breath before standing Queequegesque at the foul line and tossing up a brick that clangs from the backboard prompting handshakes and high fives all around from their Rokovoko island teammates.

Then off they go to do it again and later with the score at a whopping 65-62 with 10 seconds left in the game that’s 3 hours old, we all call this defense!

Is this just me? Because I can’t stand to watch anymore. Perhaps it’s because I have grown older and am just out of touch with the “newness” of the game. I remember when I was young listening to my father lament about how not enough baseball players played the game like DiMaggio anymore…

I have always loved playing sports and I have always loved to watch sports and every once in a while I like to write about sports…but I have to admit that it is getting harder and harder to watch them now…they just don’t play any games like they used to and I know that tattoos are in and cool and everyone has them and that not many if any of today’s NBA fans would understand my literary references to Moby Dick but when it comes to sports… whatever happened to practice and rules and gamesmanship and skill?!

Today’s preparation for a career in sports seems to simply be…make yourself a physical giant among men, decorate your body and then praise the lord!

How long before athletes start tattooing themselves with advertisements?

Okay, I admit, I’ve just gotten too old to appreciate today’s sports and how they are “played”…

So call me Ishmael and give my heart  a tattoo, because Mr. Coffee, I guess, I’ll always have you.


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