Let’s just go ahead and admit it now – we live in a world that just doesn’t make sense anymore.
Not sure what we’re talking about? Just take a quick peak at your sports page and scan the headlines.
For starters, Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Donovan McNabb, who has played in 128 games during his 10-year career, didn’t know that pro football games could end in a tie.
In his post-game press conference after the Eagles tied the Cincinnati Bengals 13-13 Sunday, McNabb said he thought there would be a second overtime if the score was still tied after one extra session.
“I’ve never been part of a tie,” McNabb said. “I never even knew it was in the rule book. I was looking forward to getting the opportunity to get out there and try to drive to win the game. But unfortunately with the rules, we settled with a tie.”
This is where we point out that the last tie in the National Football League was in 2002, when the Pittsburgh Steelers tied the Atlanta Falcons 34-34, Nov. 10. We’ll give McNabb a pass for not knowing the Steelers played to a tie that day – even though both teams reside in Pennsylvania – because he was busy getting beat down by the Indianapolis Colts. But the Eagles actually played Atlanta in the playoffs that season, which means for an entire week McNabb’s focus was on all things Falcons related. When Atlanta came to town with a 9-6-1 regular season record don’t you think McNabb might have thought “Hmmm … what’s that number in the third column?”
If you’re an Eagles fan (always known for their rational thoughts and calm demeanor), then you’ve got to be saying, “Are you kidding me?” Management should march down to the locker room immediately and ask backup quarterback Kevin Kolb, “Do you know the basic rules of professional football?” If the answer is yes, then he’s now the starter in Philly. It’s that simple. It’s inexcusable for a supposed team leader with a decade of experience to not know Football 101.
And if the rumors are true that head coach Andy Reid didn’t know that ties exist in pro football either (which would explain his team’s decision to punt three times in overtime), then he’s got to go too. Turn the team over to Jim Johnson, the defensive coordinator, and send “Cheesesteak Andy” home to deal with his troubled family. We know that Philly is still hung over from winning their first championship in decades, but this is an embarrassment that should be taken seriously. You were willing to take action against Santa Claus. Now do the right thing and turn your attention to McNabb.
But that’s not the only craziness taking over the world of sports. Did you see the story about the 16-year-old girl who was drafted to play professional baseball in Japan?
Eri Yoshida, a 5-foot, 114-pound knuckleball pitcher, was selected by Kobe 9 Cruise in the Japanese League. Like a crap-tastic episode of 90210 or some terrible Disney movie, she’ll go from high school to the big leagues. Seriously. We’re not making this up.
Outside of the Olympics, the only time we’ve ever watched anything close to women playing professional sports was the movie A League of their Own. And let’s be honest – Madonna and Rosie O’Donnell were prominently involved, so that’s not exactly putting your best foot forward.
We’re heading dangerously close to “male cheerleader” territory here, which is never good. Let’s just go ahead and admit it now – this is a publicity stunt gone horribly wrong. The first time an opposing batter sends a line drive back up the middle it could very well kill the poor girl. Send her back to gym class while she’s still healthy and innocent and fire whoever thought it was a good idea to bring a “Sweet 16” into a clubhouse.
But the biggest news of the week is Brock Lesnar defeating Randy Couture to capture the heavyweight title at UFC 91. Forget that Lesnar, in just his fourth professional fight, was able to dethrone one of the most respected and established fighters in all of mixed martial arts. The fact is, a professional wrestler just won a real fight. Brock went from collecting a paycheck in the scripted World Wrestling Entertainment to knocking out the Ultimate Fighting Champion.
That’s roughly equivalent to the HoboTrashcan staff getting together for a night out on the town, when a drunken Ned Bitters (redundant, we know) decides to sign us up to play some Rock Band 2 at the bar. Courtney Enlow is singing lead, I’m playing lead guitar, Hobo Stu’s on the bass and Bitters is on the drums rocking out to “Hungry Like The Wolf” and next thing you know, we get signed by some big record label and ultimately win a Grammy.
Or how about this – after successfully guiding his fantasy football team, the Part-Time Models, to an improbable league championship, my brother is hired by the Detroit Lions to become their next general manager. After all, he’s already more qualified than former GM Matt Millen. His team won something.
Bottom line: stuff like this just isn’t supposed to happen. Vince McMahon and friends are in the business of entertaining, not actually bringing something real and tangible to the table. What’s next? Will Jerry “The King” Lawler actually become royalty? Will The Undertaker get a job at Arlington National Cemetery? Will Isaak Yankem become a legitimate dentist? Where does it end?
Brian Murphy is an award-winning sportswriter who also goes by the name Homer McFanboy. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.