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Friday, March 14, 2008

Random Rants

I've developed a solid interest in "Pardon The Interruption" over the last year, but the show before it, "Around The Horn," can certainly be annoying.

At one point today, the scribes were talking about whether NBA superstar LeBron James deserved to be on the cover of iconic women's magazine "Vogue." George Clooney and Richard Gere are the only males to ever appear on the cover before him.

"I'd like (James) to win a championship before he's doing Vogue magazine and Saturday Night Live and all that," Jay Mariotti said. "Is he really a cultural icon?"

Yes, Jay, he is a cultural icon. Want to know why? Because sports reporters like you made him one nearly 10 years ago. Expectations are no longer set naturally or realistically. They are set by the very media that begins covering phenoms when they are 12 years old. And then we tear them down when they get mixed up in the wrong things -- you know, drugs, girlbeating, not winning an NBA championship -- before they're 20 or 25. No teenager should have to live his life on camera, yet we expect it routinely, and then we express shock when the once-coddled star athlete has difficulty adjusting to adult life.

Another rant . . . I used to be down with Bruce Bowen and his pesky defensive habits. But you don't put your arms in the air as if you've done nothing, all the while simultaneously dropping your knee on the dome of Chris Paul, the new face of the NBA who was on the floor battling for the loose ball that you yourself didn't fight hard enough for. Bowen deserves his suspension.

Finally . . . I've long been and will always be a fan of Bob Knight. When you only know one career for four decades, and in that career you've often been combative with those who cover you, once you join those who cover you, there might be a critic or two. But Knight isn't asked to be cutesy on ESPN's college basketball set this week, so that's why it might look a little awkward or stiff. I think he's doing as good a job as you'd expect from a half-crazy former coach who's probably doing his old buddy Digger Phelps a favor more than he's actually enjoying his new gig. He's not a TV guy by any stretch, so just listen to the words that he's speaking, and you'll find that his honest and insightful takes are actually pretty interesting. How could they not be?

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At 12:42 PM EDT, Anonymous wall said...

honest and insightful takes...God I miss Rick Majerus


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