I have always been annoyed by Rubbernecking—-to me its a reflection of the irritating part of our society. Can’t we just mind our own business?  I wouldn’t want anyone staring at me or my loved ones if god forbid something may happen on the road—-so I choose to give others the same courtesy.

Car crashes can come in several forms the latest is– Miley Cyrus. Again I choose to look away —-not because I’m being courteous—I simply don’t want to watch. Maybe I’m the last person in America who hasn’t seen Miley’s trashy and much publicized VMA performance —just call it my not so silent protest.

FIrst off—they still make music videos?? Secondly and much more importantly— kudos to my wife for having the remote in her hand and the cat like reflexes to click to the Disney channel right before the Miley Madness tipped off in front of my two little ladies –both of whom had no business seeing such trash. Oh Miley—-I get it— you want to be considered a grown up now but talent trumps trash any day of the week. What a shame she wasn’t taught that and a further shame that several kids had a front row seat of an act (I hear??!) makes Britney Spears look like Minnie Mouse.  Lost and disillusioned child stars one of many thoughts in another lap around the Naborhood—-thanks for your time!

COLLEGE FOOTBALL POLLS: I have never understood why the world of college athletics has preseason polls. Its like reviewing a movie before the screenplay was finished or rating a restaurant before the menu is done. The NFL, NBA and MLB don’t have preseason polls so why do we do it in college football?? We should have a college football poll beginning in October not in August?? Who knows if Clemson is better than Georgia or if Texas A&M can hang with Bama—wouldn’t it be nice to get a taste of how good these teams are before we stick them with a ranking which is often inaccurate?? Look no further than last year when USC was preseason number one —they didn’t even finish in the top 25 and had six losses—-please get rid of preseason rankings!!

SEC SUPERIORITY: With seven straight national titles, there’s not a safer bet in college football than the SEC but how close is the rest of the country to unseating college football’s biggest bully? I see Notre Dame is recruiting more players from the South and with Urban Meyer at Ohio State bringing in more “SEC type of recruits” the playing field should be leveling out soon but I’m not sure this is the year. I would love to see “so called” national title contenders like Ohio State, Clemson, Stanford and Oregon play the kind of schedule Florida has against the likes of LSU, South Carolina and Georgia? Would be interesting to see….

Speaking of schedules—the SEC’s is extremely uneven. Alabama may win the national title because they have the most talent or the fact that they don’t have to play Florida, Georgia or South Carolina this year—guessing they can handle their only SEC East opponents in Kentucky and Tennessee? I like Steve Spurrier‘s proposal that you should go by each team’s division record to decide each division winner instead of the team’s overall conference record—-as long as the schedule stays in its current format?

“Your division champ should be decided on division games,” Spurrier said back in 2012. “Last year, it wasn’t fair for  Tennessee and Florida. They both played LSU and Alabama. Us and Georgia didn’t. So, us or Georgia almost had to win the division simply because of the schedule.”

For the record I’ll take Alabama and South Carolina in the SEC Championship game. Both have lots of talent and maybe more importantly easier schedules than anybody else in their respective divisions.

STRIKING THE POSE?? I also like Alabama QB AJ McCarron to win the Heisman. He could have easily won it a year ago if he would have completed a comeback against Johnny Football and the Aggies in Tuscaloosa. McCarron is a better QB than many give him credit for–I see Nick Saban giving him more freedom in the offense. The bottom line, the kid is a winner and he’ll keep winning this fall.

PUSHING ESPN:Its amazing to me that every American institution has competition except the World Wide Leader in Sports? I mean McDonalds has Burger King, Letterman has Leno but ESPN hasn’t truly been pushed by anybody??

I don’t hate ESPN like many people and many of my peers in the business. At the end of the day, they do a lot more right than wrong and they’ve been number one for decades for a reason—they are the best alternative in the world of sports television. For ever stupid Tebow or Lebron story they may run ad nausem –they’re SportsCentury and 30 for 30 series’ have been outstanding television. I don’t like Around the Horn but love PTI—you can’t win them all.
With that said, its exciting to see the dawn of Fox Sports 1 which seems poised to give ESPN its biggest competition ever. Its early and I want to give them a few months to get their feet wet before critiquing this new network but I like the early signs. Main anchors Jay Onrait and Dan O’Toole are a credible and entertaining anchor duo. I could do without the busy graphics and the likes of Andy Roddick and Donovan McNabb breaking down sports other than tennis and football respectively but again–let’s let them breathe awhile before passing judgement.

Getting pushed is great for both networks and will in turn be good for all of us. Many though hell would freeze over before Keith Olbermann would return to ESPN–instead it seems he is back to help the network fend off the growing competition.

THE BUTLER: It took weeks and months for that matter –but FINALLY I saw a summer movie I actually enjoyed. The Butler was simply outstanding. The movie (directed by Lee Daniels) has a great cast lead by Forest Whitaker who plays Cecil Gaines who served as a White House Butler for 34 years. I thought this movie, based on a true story, gave me a better perspective of racism in our country than even “42” as The Butler had more graphic scenes beginning with Gaines childhood and continuing throughout this fantastic film. Oprah did a great job playing Cecil’s wife Gloria and my favorite character  was Gaines son Louis who certainly was on the front lines of everything that was wrong with the 1960’s. Another interesting dynamic of the movie was the characterizations of the different presidents in Gaines run in the White House. You had Robin Williams of all people play Dwight Eisenhower (kind of a stretch), but John Cusack was an interesting choice for Richard Nixon–you even had a believable Jane Fonda as Nancy Reagan. The Butler is a great film—thanks for saving the summer movie season!

NOBODY ASKED ME BUT: Getting the kids back to school this year made me a little sad and happy at the same time. Its the first time in four years that my girls will be at different schools. It meant I had to take my oldest to junior high for the first time which is hard to fathom. I will always remember walking my Morgan to preschool, to elementary school but this walk was different. Unlike the first two trips, I couldn’t walk her into her class—something I understand but had a hard time dealing with. After dropping her off, I had immediate  flashbacks of when she was a year old and loved her first birthday cake, when she used to let me give her a bath—-those days are over but I have come to grips that many good days are ahead. I noticed this when I nervously picked her up, hoping she had a good first day and was relieved when she had a big smile on her face. Life doesn’t end at junior high, for my girl its a new beginning and while I can’t walk here into class like I used to–I will enjoy watching her grow up—let’s just don’t talk about dating please!

EXTRA POINT: In Houston recently, and read a great story of how excited Astros rookie Cody Clark was to make his major league debut. He isn’t your normal rookie though—you see Clark was called up after spending 11 years in the minors. He cried when his minor league manager gave him the news and had his whole family fly in for his debut, including his 91 year old grandfather. It was refreshing to read this kind of story—everything you love about baseball in favor of all the A-Rod and Ryan Braun nonsense that’s been front and center of late.



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