(I worked as a Sports Editor from late 2004 until the summer of 2006. This is one of the many columns I was able to save that were originally published in The Sun-Times of Heber Springs, Arkansas.)
C’est la vie, c’est la vie, that’s just the way it goes. Wasn’t that a Richard Marx lyric? I’m not sure because I’ve tried to purge my brain of anything related to that mullet sporting Chicago born pop star.
I used it because c’est la vie is obviously a French term, and it means ‘it is the life’. Or more loosely translated, ‘That’s life’. The French people should heed their own saying and just come to grips with the fact that American Lance Armstrong is the king of their sport.
But instead of letting the man ride off into the sunset after winning his seventh straight Tour de France, the French people are making a big Pepe Le Pew out of a supposed Armstrong urine test from 1999 that has tested positive for a banned substance. Apparently testing wasn’t available for EPO – a red blood cell enhancer that increases stamina – until now. And there are some questions on if it is really Armstrong’s urine.
(This column is really taking me back to fourth grade. I can’t stop my inner monologue from repeating “Poo poo and pee pee” in a French accent.)
What’s the statute of limitations on holding urine anyway? If the tests weren’t sophisticated enough six years ago, why bother now? Unless of course the allegations are true.
Armstrong has repeatedly denied using any type of performance enhancer, but so did Barry Bonds, Rafael Palmeiro, Jason Giambi, and Bruce Banner. At least in Banner’s case one can believe he didn’t intentionally immerse himself in gamma radiation to become a 10-feet tall green monster.
Maybe Lance should go ahead and admit the truth. I, for one, wouldn’t think any less of his accomplishments. After surviving cancer and chemotherapy, maybe he was taking EPO just to get his blood back to normal.
Admitting he cheated didn’t hurt Argentina soccer star Diego Maradona, who recently admitted that his famous ‘Hand of God’ goal in the 1986 World Cup against England was actually hit by the hand of Diego.
His revelation has done nothing to diminish the fact that along with Pele, he’s probably the greatest soccer player to ever live.
Just like everyone would still consider Armstrong the best non-BMX’er ever to sit on an uncomfortable bicycle seat. Even if he bent the rules a little.
No Goodbye Hugs
On Wednesday, Bob Huggins was forced out as head coach of the Cincinnati Bearcats. Cincy’s new President Nancy Zimpher had enough of poor graduation rates, assaults, thefts, torture, and drunken driving; so, she gave Huggins the axe.
I’m all for this except for one thing: It’s about 12 years too late!
Why couldn’t someone have done this when the Bearcats were routinely beating up my Memphis Tigers? I could have told anyone who would listen that Huggins was an undesirable whose team was made up of thugs who couldn’t spell.
They always looked more like a prison yard hoops team instead of a squad of scholar-athletes with clean records.
But if I were a Bearcat fan (and thank goodness I’m not) I’d probably be a little upset. All of these facts that led to Huggins firing took place more than a year ago. Why wait until the eve of their inaugural season in the Big East to fire the school’s all-time winningest coach?
But then again, I’m not a Bearcat fan, so I’ll just lay back and enjoy the good times.
I’m sure all of you have heard about Ricky Williams leaving his playbook in a hotel room last week. Just like I’m sure most of you have made up your own “he must have smoked too much weed” jokes and told them repeatedly.
Dolphins coach Nick Saban is taking it all in stride and brought animal defecation into the equation Tuesday.
Saban asked a group of reporters if they knew what mouse manure was, and then asked if they knew what elephant doo-doo was (my fourth-grade readers are going to love this column). He then replied that to him, this was mouse manure.
I would have to agree. Except for the fact that there is never just one pile of mouse manure. Usually there are little pellets in more than one place. Let’s hope for Miami’s sake that that little mouse becomes constipated and Ricky can focus on playing football again.
Finally, A Good Choice
The NCAA showed some good sense for once on Tuesday when they told FSU that it was ok if they kept the name Seminoles during the postseason. They said that since the Seminole tribe in Florida gave their permission and works closely with the school in all things Native American, they would look the other way.
Why didn’t they adopt this stance when the Seminole tribe in Florida said it was fine last year? I’m sure it had nothing to do with the lawsuit that FSU was going to throw down.
See it’s all about the cheese with the mouse manure that is the NCAA. Maybe they should just change the C to cash so we would all be clear on what their real focus is.
His Name Wasn’t Robert Paulson
Finally, my column last Friday concerning my predictions had an error in it. Not the order of picks (which is sure to be at least 70-percent wrong), but in my Steelers paragraph I wrote that they were looking to make their first Super Bowl since the days of Bubby Brister.
Of course, Neil O’Donnell was the quarterback that basically threw the game for the Steelers, not Brister. Brister wasn’t even a backup on that team.
I’ll chalk it up to the fact that we should never forget a sports name like Bubby Brister, and from now on I’m making it my mission in life to make sure that we don’t.
His name was Bubby Brister.
His name was Bubby Brister.