Losing A Good Friend

Hurricanes Move From Orange Bowl Feels Like Losing A Good Friend

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Ever had someone who you counted on so much, that was there for you in good times and in bad, that no matter the situation, would never turn their back on you? If you have, then you understand the relationship Miami Hurricanes fans have with the Orange Bowl.

For decades fans have been filling the Orange Bowl in Miami every time the Hurricanes played a home game. Rain or Shine, fans turned out in tens of thousands to cheer on their college football team.

Only difference in these fans as opposed to other college football fans around the country, was that appearance did not matter to Hurricane fans.

The Orange Bowl was never the best looking stadium in the country, and it did not have much to offer as far as top notch amenities, but what it did give these fans of Miami football, was it’s heart and soul.

The OB, which it is affectionately called, would never stand you up, and never disappointed. No matter what went on in peoples lives, there was always comfort in going to a Canes game for a injection of hope.

It was a place where fans knew no failure, as evidence in the home winning streak of the University of Miami, a winning streak that was unmatched in college football, and one that lasted almost a full decade.

Hundreds of players came running through the legendary smoke that filled the air before games, and many of those players ran right into the NFL. The thing that bonds these players together, is even stronger than any individual team they played for professionally, that bond, the OB.

To hear former players talk, it’s almost as if they never even considered losing once they stepped on the OB’s sacred grass. Ask opponents who have played there and they will cringe just upon hearing those two initials.

The players have all come and gone, and while many still return often, it is the hearts of the fans that broke yesterday, upon learning of the Hurricanes move to Dolphin Stadium for the 2008 season.

While most fans understand the process of moving on and the logistics behind the move, it still leaves that uneasy feeling in the pit of your stomach, the feeling that only accompanies gut wrenching decisions and heart breaking losses.

When the OB says good bye to the Hurricanes this season, it will be a case of gone but not forgotten, much like a fallen best friend.

Play For Championship

Hoopla Over, Time For Colts And Bears To Play For Championship

Peyton Manning has waited his whole life to win a title of some kind. The title did not come in high school nor did it come at The University of Tennessee, where he had a stellar career. Now, after years of hearing rumors of his inability to win the big game Manning stands one win away from football infamy.

On the other side of the field Rex Grossman will stand with a similar image in his head, Grossman will be looking to lead the Chicago Bears to their first title since the 1985 season.

It has been extremely hard for the players to focus on the game at hand with their environment being the shores of South Beach in Miami, but today, they will try to put all of the distractions behind them as both teams seek to become Super Bowl champions.

The oddsmakers believe that the Colts will win based on public opinion as the betting line lingers at the Colts favored by a touchdown, but as past Super Bowls as evidence, the betting line is little more than public opinion.

The day these athletes have dreamed about their entire lives is upon them, and for one of these teams, their lifelong dreams, as well as their individual legacies, will be hanging in the balance, in a late evening Miami Beach showdown.

Colts Defeat Bears To Win The Super Bowl

The game played in Miami was played poorly, almost as poorly as the weather, but through all of the sloppiness a champion emerged, as the Colts became what amounted to the last team standing.

The first half was filled with blunders as both teams took turns giving the ball back and forth through turnovers and at the half the Colts led 16-14.

In the second half it appeared that the Colts were ready to seize control of the game, but each time the Bears defense stiffened deep in their own end and held the Colts to field goal attempts.

The turning point of the game came when much maligned Bears quarterback Rex Grossman threw an interception for a touchdown with the score only 22-17 at the time.

After that things unravelled for the Bears and Grossman, who threw another interception to seal the game on a pass to what appeared to be a wide open Bernard Berrian. The pass was severely under thrown.

So now the Bears and Grossman are left to face an off season of questions while Peyton Manning and Tony Dungy have answered their critics.

Dungy becomes the first African-American head coach to hoist the Super Bowl trophy, while Manning was the games most valuable player.

Glavine Wins

Glavine Wins Number 300 For All That is Good in Baseball

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The past few weeks have seen the spotlight in Major League Baseball shined on Barry Bonds and his pursuit of the all time home run record, but on Sunday night in Chicago, Tom Glavine overshadowed the supersized slugger.

Glavine notched his 300th win at Wrigley Field as fans around the country watched live on ESPN Sunday Night Baseball. Glavine joined a group that includes only 22 other Major League Baseball players.

He won with a performance that was equivalent to most in his career, with pinpoint control, and an unflappable resolve lasting an almost full seven innings.

If Bonds is all that is wrong with the game of baseball, then Glavine is all that is right. After the final out of the game in his 300th win Tom Glavine was overheard by ESPN cameras thanking bench coaches and fellow players for their help along the way.

While players like Barry Bonds and Alex Rodriguez strive for greatness to fuel their ego, Glavine just continues to do what he has done his whole career, that is represent himself and his family with the highest honor, respect, and modesty.

All that needs to be known about the difference between Glavine and Bonds is this, while Bonds was booed when circling the bases in San Diego, Chicago fans stuck around and gave Glavine a standing ovation after his milestone victory.

See, baseball and their fans have their own fraternity, and are funny in that way. It is the one sport where the fans’ fervor for their heroes super-cede their fervor for the teams they root for. If a player respects the game and its rules, and plays the game the way it was intended to be played, everyone in the fraternity celebrates, no matter what team fans have an allegiance to.

So here’s to you Tom Glavine, for playing baseball the right way and for keeping hope alive that young children growing up choose to grasp on to a role model worth looking up to.

Gambling Ring

Former Hockey Star Tocchet Guilty of Running Gambling Ring

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In a fascinating case regarding some high profile former NHL players involved in an alleged gambling ring that was based out of New Jersey, the primary defendant, Rick Tocchet, plead guilty on Friday to running the ring.

Of the high profile stars involved, none were bigger than The Great One, himself, Wayne Gretzky, who was not involved directly, but his wife Janet Jones was rumored to be a big time gambler.

Tocchet now faces sentencing in August and although the conviction comes with the threat of 10 years in prison and up to $50,000 in fines, it is not likely he will do any jail time. It is not typical that first time offenders of the third degree felony end up doing time.

There was a taped conversation between Tocchet and Gretzky in which they detailed ways to keep Gretzky’s wife out of the scandal. Not much came of that conversation outside of press headlines, mainly because it took place after New Jersey state police broke the ring.

In his guilty plea, Tocchet explained that he worked with Jersey state trooper James Harney, and James Ulmer, in forming and running the ring. The ring supposedly brought in more than $1.7 million in a 40-day period between college football bowl games and the Super Bowl.

The other two defendants Harney and Ulmer, face up to seven years and one year in jail, respectively.

Today’s Derby

Favorites Have To Overcome History in Today’s Derby

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There is a certain sense of tradition when it comes to the Kentucky Derby, a horse race that has been run 133 times before. And although many have tried to defy it’s history, none have been able to do so.

Three horses today will be the newest in the line of prize horses that will try to beat the odds and the Derby’s lomg standing traditions.

The first horse is Derby favorite Curlin(7-2). The horse will try to become the first horse since 1915 to win the race after having four or fewer career starts. Also playing against Curlin is the fact that no horse has ever won the race without having raced as a 2 year old, a feat he is looking to accomplish.

The second pick today is Street Sense, coming in at 4-1. The odds that this horse will have to beat are as follows. He is trying to become the first horse since 1983 to win coming off only two prep races. Also, he is trying to become the first 2 year old winner of this race since 1979, when Spectacular Bid won.

Lastly, there is the third choice Circular Quay, who shares that distinction with Nobiz Like Showbiz at 8-1. Quay is trying to become the first horse since Morvich in 1922 to win the race coming off an eight week layoff.

Going against all of these horses is also the fact that the race is full, with twenty horses entered, that is sure to provide some exciting moments, and an even tougher mile and a quarter for the favorit