#1 – The First of Hopefully Many

Let’s get this thing started. This is basically a test post because I am not ready to really publicize this blog just yet…because frankly I’m not sure what direction it’ll go or for how long. But as the title suggests, I’m hoping this is the first of many.

I just thought of a cheesy idea to number each post and then dedicate it to an athlete (dead or alive) or a year that stands out for me (perhaps when a favorite album or movie came out). This could get tricky, but we’ll give it a shot. So this first one is dedicated to Ozzie Smith, who proudly wore #1 from 1978-1996 with the San Diego Padres and St. Louis Cardinals. As a middle infielder in Little League I always admired Ozzie because I was a much better fielder than I was hitter (that’s selling Ozzie short, because he could hit, he just didn’t have power). The strange part is I’ve always disliked the Cardinals. Anyway, this one’s for you, Wizard.

Well, I don’t know why I didn’t think of this until today but being a sports fan will be somewhat miserable come late October of 2011. It’s looking pretty likely that we won’t have NFL football or NBA basketball next season…at least not starting on time anyway

I know there will be college football and basketball (I am a die hard fan of the latter), but the daily schedule of games will seem so measly with NBA and no NFL on Sundays. As fans of those two leagues, what the hell are we supposed to do? Be productive? Do something useful with our lives? Not spend all of Sunday on a couch? That might be asking too much.

I wrote on article in 2007 for Suite101.com addressing a similar problem.The piece, entitled “February’s Tough for Sports Fans” is a tongue-in-cheek look at what we should do during sports’ most snooze-worthy month. But that’s nothing compared to what we might be faced with next Fall. Multiple months of no NFL or NBA is beyond depressing. Perhaps the hardest thing to stomach is potentially going a year without fantasy football. An industry that has grown exponentially each season might be sitting on the sidelines for an entire year. If the NFL does get underway but only with a 10-game schedule for example, can you still have a fantasy season? Do you cut the fantasy playoffs short? Tough questions.

As a huge college hoops fan it would be awesome for the early part of the season to get more attention than it typically gets. All of the big preseason tournaments typically get buried by football and the NBA, so maybe this opens the door for college basketball to be in the spotlight. But I’m not naive enough to think that will be the case. The truth is that college basketball will go unnoticed until after the New Year, even in a situation like the one we might have during the 2011-12 season. I’ve been waving the flag for early-season college basketball for years, but I’m not sure subtracting the NBA and NFL will equate to a larger November-December audience.

Of course there is still about a year to go until we reach that point, and for all I know the NFL will have a season after all—however long it ends up being. And the NBA could end up with a season like it had in 1998-99, where there was a 50-game season following that lockout.

What I’ll be watching this weekend…

  • Giants-Vikings on Sunday
  • Army-Navy on Saturday (hoping Army breaks out of the slump in this game, but not optimistic)
  • Eagles-Cowboys on Sunday night (rooting against my wife’s team is tough…who am I kidding? I’ve always hated the Eagles!)

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