Peeves and praiseWritten by Dave Woolford | | firstname.lastname@example.org
Draft Dodgers: That’s what the Cleveland Browns might as well be. Of the 71 players the Browns organization has drafted since 1999, none have made it to the Pro Bowl, according to a source that would prefer to remain anonymous. At this writing, it appeared the Browns were going to choose between Notre Dame quarterback Brady Quinn or Oklahoma running-back Adrian Peterson. Their current quarterback, Charlie Frye, was a third-round pick. Quinn was expected to be the third pick overall this weekend in the NFL draft. Quinn was the obvious choice, like Bill Cowher will be the obvious choice to replace Romeo Crennel as the Browns coach should Cleveland register a ninth losing season since its return in 1999.
And remember when Ohio State Heisman Trophy winner Troy Smith was being mentioned as possibly the Browns’ first draft choice, at least among quarterbacks? Now all we hear is that Smith is too short to operate from the pocket, which is why his draft prominence took a big hit. When did he shrink?
Spring Flings: It’s amazing that Ohio State drew almost 75,000 fans to its recent annual spring football game. It’s not amazing that Michigan, by comparison, drew a few folks who would have been there by invitation only if coach Lloyd Carr had anything to say about it. Carr has never wanted to play a spring game. On one occasion, he made the scoring so complicated the players weren’t even sure who won. Another time he wanted to close the spring game to the media and just invite the players’ families and friends, while contesting the game next to the indoor practice facility where a more controlled environment could exist. What a grand opportunity totally ignored.
Just Wondering: Mike Conley says he wants to become an agent representing his son, Mike Jr., and his Ohio State teammates Greg Oden and Daequan Cook, all of whom have made themselves eligible for the upcoming NBA draft. It sounded like a get-rich-quick scheme at first with Oden expected to be either the first or second pick in the draft. But my friends in low places say it isn’t a ploy. The senior Conley has been mentoring his son and Oden since they started playing together in the sixth grade. Conley junior and Cook, a nonstarter with the Buckeyes last season, can withdraw from the draft if they don’t hire agents. Oden has committed to the NBA, as well he should.
Debris? What Debris?: I had to chortle when I read this recent headline: “Older Stewart Keeps Low Profile.” Underneath that it said: “NASCAR’s Bad Boy Mellowing.” Chortle, chortle, chortle. On his weekly radio show this week, Stewart drew a comparison between NASCAR and pro wrestling when it comes to staging stimulation with late-race caution flags for bogus debris on the track. “It’s like playing God,” he stated. “They can almost dictate the race instead of the drivers doing it. It’s happened too many times this year. I guess NASCAR thinks, ‘Hey, wrestling worked, and it was for the most part staged, so I guess it’s going to work in racing, too.’ I can’t understand how long the fans are going to let NASCAR treat them like they’re stupid before the fans finally turn on NASCAR. I don’t know that they’ve run a fair race all year.” If I’m Tony Stewart, I’m not sure who I would want tracking me down less after those caustic comments, NASCAR or Stone Cold Steve Austin. Truth is, he’s correct to a certain extent.