The picture you get talking to people inside college basketball about their sport is they love the game, but hope it gets help. There are several simple shifts that could make the sport cleaner, faster, and better to watch (and play, for that matter).
People, please, let’s get ahold of ourselves. Put down the outrage, even for a second. We are turning the amount of air in footballs into the biggest scandal in sports and nation’s most-talked-about news item.
This Super Bowl will have everything. Russell Wilson going for his second Super Bowl championship in three seasons. Marshawn Lynch at media day. Richard Sherman at media day. Rob Gronkowski in the party bus afterward, win or lose.
The Chiefs are spectators again, still looking for their first playoff win in more than two decades. But their nucleus is strong and they have enough draft picks to shift that narrative in a big way this offseason.
This is the start of the second act for a young man who should be Kansas State’s best basketball player since Jacob Pullen. Marcus Foster has to know this is the part of his career he will be remembered for. This is the one he’ll be judged on. For better, or for worse.
When the story of Kansas’ preposterous 11th consecutive Big 12 championship is told it will probably not include much about this first week of conference play. But when the story is told about the streak that just won’t die, it should be mentioned that it took all of a week to see how this would eventually play out.
The Chiefs, if they are to maximize a shrinking window to push toward postseason success, will have to wear the consequences of an uncomfortable business decision — by cutting linebacker Tamba Hali. If this happens, the Chiefs will be making a painful choice. They will be telling one of the franchise’s best pass rushers goodbye, next seeing him either in someone else’s uniform or in a suit for his Ring of Honor ceremony.
Yordano Ventura quit school at 14 and was working construction until his big break: a tryout that led to a spot in the Kansas City Royals’ academy in the Dominican Republic. But even after making the major leagues and pitching in the World Series, Ventura wouldn’t live anywhere else than Las Terrenas, his hometown, where he trained on the beach and swam in the ocean.
It would be better for everyone who is not a Rams fan in St. Louis if the city tells owner Stan Kroenke there won’t be a dime of public money for a new stadium or a stadium upgrade. It would make it easier for the next city to do the same, and to eventually — hopefully — force sports leagues and owners to admit that publicly funded stadiums should no longer be the expectation.
It is hard to see Bol Bol without thinking of his famous father, the late 7-foot-7 former NBA player and South Sudanese humanitarian Manute Bol. So tall, so thin, with the same high cheeks, the same brown and lively eyes. Bol, 14, is already taller than 99 percent of American adults and already talented enough that college coaches have called — all for a freshman who hasn’t yet played a varsity basketball game.
To Justin Houston, who on Sunday surpassed Derrick Thomas for most sacks by a Chief in a single season, Kansas City’s 19-7 victory over the San Diego Chargers was more important than setting a record. “I'm more disappointed we're going home,” he said of the Chiefs missing the playoffs.
Do the Chiefs really enjoy a home-field advantage from the so-called Arrowhead Stadium Mystique going into their must-win showdown Sunday with the San Diego Chargers? For well over a decade, Arrowhead Stadium hasn’t always been that tough of a place for visiting teams to play.
The Chiefs haven’t made consecutive playoff appearances since 1995, and they need a lot of things to go right on Sunday for them to get back there this season. So the odds are long ... but all hope is not lost.
The Chiefs are the man who starts a diet and exercise routine with gusto, loses 10 pounds, then switches back to brownies and sitcoms. And they’ll have plenty of time for each when they fall short of the playoffs.
The similarities between former Chiefs offensive lineman John Alt and last year’s top overall draft pick Eric Fisher are striking. Two tall, athletic, raw prospects taken in the first round. Both relatively new to the position. Both with a lot of learning to do, and even more potential.
There is a lot to like from the Royals’ offseason, and not just because it comes after making it all the way to the World Series. The Royals had five goals during the offseason, and they scratched each one of their list with the final one coming Wednesday when they agreed to a two-year, $20 million contract with right-hander Edinson Volquez.
Alex Rios is a fine player to plug a gap in right field for one year, which is a wise financial move for the Royals, but he won’t change the formula for success in 2015: Next season is going to be more about Mike Moustakas, Lorenzo Cain and Eric Hosmer, among others, taking steps forward, than Rios and Kendrys Morales.
The Full Travis Kelce Experience is a slant route where he finds space between the cornerback and linebacker and goes all mini-Gronk on the Oakland Raiders defense. This is pure Kelce, good and bad, a wild abandon that means he can break four tackles on one play and an occasional recklessness that means he might fumble on the next one.
This season’s Jayhawks team, atypical for Kansas, has little inside presence and must find other ways to get points. Without injured point guard DeVonte’ Graham, coach Bill Self’s challenge could be even tougher.
The Chiefs’ wide receivers stink, and we can all agree on this. They could become the first NFL team to play the first 14 games of a season without a touchdown catch from a wide receiver. But here’s what’s debatable: are they the worst group of receivers in football?
If the Royals are correct, they have just signed a highly motivated, switch-hitting slugger who in each of his last three full seasons hit more home runs than any Royal did last season. If they aren’t, they are wasting a lot of money for an older and inferior designated hitter and still need to make another move that would be a cause for a celebration.
The Chiefs got jobbed here. Can we say it that plainly? Two critical calls went against them, and, really, that was that. But can we point out some reality? Referees did not put the Chiefs in this position they’re in now. The Chiefs put the Chiefs in this position.