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Entries in Sports (4)


With the First Pick, Andrew Meola Selects…Anything but the NFL Draft

I have turned on SportsCenter every day this week, and almost every time, ESPN has led the show with NFL Draft “news.” It’s bad enough that the four-letter network shoves the almighty NFL down our throats every week of the year. But the NFL Draft is perhaps the most overblown, overhyped event on the sports calendar.

I don’t want to completely napalm the draft. It’s a tremendous thrill for the athletes selected. Hearing their names called and shaking hands with the commissioner is undoubtedly one of the greatest moments of their lives. And they deserve it. But the draft is so riddled with problems that it’s nearly impossible to enjoy.

For starters, the draft is now on in primetime, which is tolerable and by far the least egregious of this event’s crimes. But it’s three days long. Three days! There’s absolutely no reason for the first round to be separate from the second and third and for the second and third to be separate from the final four. Two days should be the absolute maximum.

Secondly, the amount of coverage in the weeks before the draft is completely absurd. Mel Kiper Jr. and Todd McShay bombard us with their mock drafts and predictions day after day after day. I won’t speak for anyone else, but I hit my saturation point pretty darn quickly. And I don’t want to pick on ESPN (though they are the network that perpetuates this whole thing.) Most radio and TV outlets fall into the same trap of blitzing the viewer with draft coverage.

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A Tradition Unlike Any Other

It’s a great time to love sports.  The period of time from mid-March until late April offers sports fans everywhere a whole gaggle (that’s right) of things to be excited about.  Here is just a sample of the host of things taking place during that time frame in 2012: NBA trade deadline, NCAA Tournament, MLB Opening week, Champions League soccer quarterfinals (both legs), start of the NHL Playoffs, and start of the NBA Playoffs.  Without fail, during this 6-7 week stretch, I consume more sports now than during any other period of time throughout the entire year.

Even with all these going on, there is one more event which might just stand out as my favorite.  And though this is hard for me to say, because it’s one of those “Which child do you love the most”-type statements, that first week of April (usually), when the Masters comes on, it gets closer and closer to being my run-away favorite.

I’m not the world’s biggest golf fan.  Despite being a pretty miserable golfer (my swing is mirrored after Sir Charles Barkley), I do enjoy playing.  While I am out there hacking the ball around the course I am usually able to muster up a few decent shots and (as any golfer knows) that keeps me coming back.  But as far as my interest in professional golf goes, it usually consists of, “Tiger or Phil leading? No? Alright, I am going to lie here on the couch and fall asleep.”  However, with the Masters it is just different.

I don’t know if it is the tradition and the history of the tournament, or just the sheer beauty of Augusta National Golf Club, but there is something so sacred about the Masters that it draws in even the most casual of fans. 

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Drinking The Haterade

When it comes to sports I’m a bad friend.  You see I grew up in the Washington DC/Baltimore area which means all of my favorite sports teams are terrible. My boys are the Orioles, Redskins, Capitals, and Wizards. Needless to say, I have a lot of valuable memorabilia including a signed baseball glove by Eric DuBose and B.J. Surhoff.

Yes I’m a fan of awful franchises. We never win, we never come close, we’re the laughing stock of nearly every league (except for the Caps who only suck in the post-season), and since nobody wants to play for such losers, we’re never going to get better.

My teams suck, you’re teams don’t, I hate you for it.

What makes me a bad friend is my mindset. If I can’t be happy, you shouldn’t be happy either. I know that’s a shitty way of thinking, but it’s how I think so what can I do? Why do other franchises deserve championships before mine do? I deserve it more. Do you understand how difficult it is to watch the Orioles lose 85+ games a year for 15 years, and still be cautiously optimistic for next season? Do you know how hard it is to sit back and watch as the Redskins choose another name out of the world’s most untalented hat to decide who’s going to start under center next season? Do you know how frustrating it is to have the number one pick and take Kwame Brown?

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Top Ten Tuesday- Best Names in Sports

Yet another contributing writer makes his debut on the site today. Andrew Meola has been dubbed our resident list-guy. Hopefully he'll be delivering us a new top-ten list each Tuesday. 

As a (hopefully) frequent contributor to Walk In Radio, I figure it would be appropriate to tell you all a bit about myself.

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