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Was it a miracle — or a choke? PDF Print E-mail
Saturday, January 11, 2014 9:00 PM

By JIM METCALFE

Sports Editor

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You know, everybody is talking about the Indianapolis Colts’ miracle comeback against the Kansas City Chiefs in last week’s first round of the National Football League playoffs.

They want to say what a great second half Andrew Luck had, etc., etc., etc.

They also talk about the collapse that the Chiefs had in that same 30 minutes.

Here is my question: why did Luck and the Colts play so poorly to begin with? At home? When they had been playing so well down the stretch? Against a team that had lost five out of seven games to close the season?

A team that could do nothing right in the first half-plus two minutes turns into a team that could do nothing wrong the last 28 minutes … and vice versa.

You could argue that Luck played well, that the Chiefs’ coaching staff pulled a “Bill Callahan” and forgot they could run the ball, that the moon’s cheese melted, etc.

How about this: The Chiefs forgot how to breathe, if you know what I mean?

Was it Colts’ pride or Chiefs’ choke?

Hmmm.

It always intrigues me when this “phenomena” happens.

I guess if I could really figure it out, I would make millions — or at least a couple of bucks.

——-

Ever since The Delphos Herald went to its morning edition, I have had a chance to watch ESPN’s “First Take” a lot more.

I am not saying that Stephen A. Smith and Skip Bayless are my new best buds — maybe I can get them to friend me on Facebook if I ever fully enter into that realm and they will invite me on the show! — or that I agree with everything — or even most everything — they observe but I give them the credit to generally give us their heart-felt opinion.

I can imagine that they are under pressure to toe the company line — or rather the politically correct line — so I expect it might take great courage to buck the trend.

Take the “outrage” over Smith’s statement that the Cincinnati Bengals’ head coach Marvin Lewis should not have that position anymore.

His reasoning: he has been in that position for 11 seasons and has no playoff victories in five tries, especially Sunday’s debacle against the San Diego Chargers.

He is apparently in the minority in this argument against such luminaries as former Colts’ coach Tony Dungy, former GM Bill Polian and others.

What really started this brouhaha was Lewis giving quarterback Andy Dalton a vote of confidence after owner Mike Brown gave Lewis a vote of confidence.

His further reasoning is that if the standard in the NFL is winning in the playoffs and making it to the Super Bowl, then the Bengals have settled for mediocrity.

Us Cowboy fans can commiserate, Mr. Smith; of course, you more or less agree with us on that, too!

——

I think the Baseball Writers Association of American got it right on its newest selections to Cooperstown.

They voted in pitchers Greg Maddux, Tom Glavine and Frank “The Big Hurt” Thomas.

Maddux and Glavine were part of the perpetually-great Atlanta Braves’ staffs of the late 1980s, 1990s and 2000s.

Apparently, 16 writers left Maddux off their ballots just so there was no unanimous choice; quite frankly, that is garbage. Either he deserves to be in or not, unanimity be darned, and he deserves to be in.

The only thing I didn’t like about the Thomas selection is his being basically a designated hitter.

I guess that is something that might happen again, whatever you think about the DH, which, as everyone knows, I wish would go the way of the Tyrannosaurus Rex!

The second thing is how a 6-5 batter who stood straight up walked 1,667 times in 19 seasons and the majority were not intentional; I can see how Ricky Henderson did because his stance was so “compact.”

Makes you wonder about the strike zone, eh?

Now, Craig Biggio, the Houston Astros — with that franchise in such a doldrum, isn’t that almost weird? — star missed by two votes but the foregone conclusion is he will get in next year.

I don’t understand that. What is he going to do to “better” his stats other than “lobby” the writers?

I find it interesting that the guys most linked to the steroids era: Barry Bonds, Sammy Sosa, Mark McGwire, Roger Clemens and Rafael Palmeiro; all saw their votes drop from the year before.

That tells me their chances — at least among the writers — are pretty much gone.

I just wonder if they have the Alex Rodriguez fiasco to thank.

His decision this summer to fight his suspension due to the Biogenesis scandal — after the MLBPA head man all but admitted you were guilty! — perhaps kept the issue in the back of writers’ minds and for whatever reason: his blatant arrogance, lack of genuine sorrow for his deeds, etc.; they have decided to punish all of them!

Perhaps that will never be known.

I know Dan Le Batard, Miami Herald columnist and co-host of ESPN’s “Highly Questionable”, has his own opinion; selling his HOF vote — for free — to Deadspin in protest of the hypocrisy he feels that MLB is showing by keeping these men out of the Hall.

I don’t know how he feels about Pete Rose; my research can’t seem to find anything he wrote or spoke about it but I will keep looking.

The end!

 

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