Your religion is your own matter and I don’t want to know what it is (I am a Druid, Reformed, for purposes of transparency), but if you’ve been of a mind to pigeonhole the devout, take a gander at San Francisco reliever Jeremy Affeldt, who blogged this week:
“Why do people who aren’t Christians hate us? They look at us and say, ‘You’re just a bunch of Bible thumpers who are homophobic and you don’t love anybody.’
“We’ve brought that on ourselves. I don’t think we’re showing the love of Jesus. Gay people are asking for equal rights under the law, and we’ve got Christians saying, ‘God hates you.’ I get so angry because that’s not true! God loves you! Jesus walks with the gay community! I think Jesus says, ‘I love you just as I love someone who is not gay. I love you as a human being. I just love you.’”
A note here regarding Affeldt’s position: Christians aren’t hated nearly as much as bigots are, and bigots run in every creed, including no creed at all.
Still, his beliefs are his beliefs, and given that they run much closer to what Christians actually say they believe, points to him. And here’s hoping the next time he’s tooling through Indiana and needs to stop for a meal that he won’t get the “I don’t have to serve you because of YOUR religious beliefs” fish-stare.
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This is what the NCAA said in a lawsuit brought by the family of a Frostburg State football player in 2013:
“The NCAA denies that it has a legal duty to protect student-athletes, but affirmatively states that under the NCAA Constitution each member institution is responsible for protecting the health of its student-athletes and that for decades it had provided appropriate information and guidance on concussions to its member institutions.”
This is what the NCAA’s attorneys said in a court filing related to the lawsuit brought in connection with the North Carolina academic fraud scandal this year.
“The NCAA did not assume a duty to ensure the quality of the education of student-athletes,” and “the NCAA does not have 'direct, day-to-day, operational control’” over member institutions.
“This case is troubling for a number of reasons, not the least of which is that the law does not and has never required the NCAA to ensure that every student-athlete is actually taking full advantage of the academic and athletic opportunities provided to them,” according to Donald Remy, the organization’s chief legal officer.
So the NCAA is not responsible for either player safety or player education. Got it. I suspect we will learn what the NCAA is responsible for when someone files a suit claiming that the NCAA isn’t properly handling the money it takes in every year. I mean, are they going to say, “It has never been the mandate of the organization to guarantee the safe maintenance and distribution of the boatloads of network and advertising cash each year –- after the usual cut, vig and administrative fees, we mean?”
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Minnesota tight end Maxx Williams, the highest-rated player at that position in the NFL Draft, is the third and latest player to say he won’t attend the draft, preferring to spend the special moment when Mel Kiper tells the nation, “Williams is plummeting off the board right now” with his family rather than a cameraman trying to wedge his lens into Williams’ eye.
The only thing I can think here is, “Three down, 27 to go.” I mean, if the three things the league can sell are the game, the fame and the money, and two of them are under direct and daily attack . . . well, why the hell not stay home? Frankly, we’d be good with the next player to opt out simply say, “I can’t think of two worse ways to spend my day, and I’ll be willing to spot you being hit by a speeding cab.”
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LeBron James, to his credit, doesn’t duck the responsibility that comes with being the associate head coach of the Cleveland Cavaliers in charge of occasional play-calling.
“I can do it on my own,” he said Wednesday after a furor over the fact that he does call plays instead of head coach David Blatt. “I'm past those days where I have to ask.
“If I see something, I have the right to call plays. Kyrie (Irving) does as well. We kind of do that play calling. Coach Blatt does the play calling obviously throughout the game in timeouts, but it's great to be able to have some type of freedom out there with Kyrie to be able to call sets that we feel best suit our team.”
The Cavaliers have won 29 of their past 36 games. That is the same record as the Golden State Warriors over the same number of games. Nobody else is close.
Do we have to spell it out for you yobs?
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The Cleveland Indians general manager is a generous soul, if a quirky one. His lowest-paid player this year is first baseman Jesus Aguilar, at $507,600. The major league minimum is $507,500. Now exactly how do we explain the extra $100? Great agenting? Did Antonetti lose to him at poker? A typo at the home office?
Probably not the last one, because the next guy on the list is pitcher Austin Adams, who makes $507,700. Man, Antonetti spends it like a drunken sailor on leave, doesn’t he?
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Ken E. Pomeroy, Super Genius, broke down the scoring in the three lesser college basketball tournaments, which all used a 30-second shot-clock, and noticed a slight but not extraordinary difference between them and the NCAA Tournament Geno Auriemma so loves. Thus, there is still time for more radical rules alterations like:
• Locking coaches in broom closets for the final five minutes of a game, with only the ability to phone in substitutions.
• Increased player stipends for getting shots up within 20 seconds.
• A hot-potato ball that heats up the longer a player holds it.
• As an alternative to (or maybe in conjunction with) the previous item, an exploding ball to speed up possessions (remember, the NCAA is not responsible for player safety).
• Jay Bilas, Dick Vitale and a thousand shrieking parrots on an endless tape loop in every arena screaming, “FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, DO SOMETHING!”
I mean, there’s only so much the CTI can teach us.
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And finally, the Milwaukee Brewers are a selling a spring-training-game-worn jersey for $1200, which of course is extortionate. The reason: It was worn by the team’s adoptive mascot, Hank The Dog.
Frankly, for that price, Hank had better have hit for the cycle and thrown a perfect game.