Sideline Slants

Understanding survey results is not my forte. That doesn’t make them any less interesting. For instance, the results of one survey I saw provides some interesting fodder.

A recent U.S. News and World Report poll asked the general public which people cheat most often. Eighty-nine percent said politicians, 78 percent said lawyers, and 76 percent said journalists and the media.

It’s fascinating that 68 percent said student athletes cheat often while 64 percent said college students in general are frequent cheaters.

I’m not sure what that says about getting a higher education.

For what it’s worth, teachers were tabbed as cheaters by 25 percent of those surveyed.

I don’t know if survey respondents were given a list of options or if they merely came up with their own.

Since I officiate basketball, I was encouraged that basketball officials weren’t on the list. Whew. And although journalists made the list, I didn’t see a specific reference to sports columnists. Double whew.

I’m assuming that those who responded to the survey recognize the honor and integrity in which basketball officials carry out their duties.

Some probably think we’re incompetent, but at least we’re not cheaters. There’s a compliment in there somewhere if you look hard enough.

Seriously, few things raise the ire of an official more than being accused of cheating. You can question their judgment, you can question their vision, you can say that they make bad calls, but if you even vaguely imply that they cheat, look out.

* * *

Here are some rambling and miscellaneous thoughts.

— The HHS girls had an outstanding record and season. Their shooting percentage often rivaled the gang that couldn’t shoot straight, but you can’t argue with the results. Whether they reached their full potential or overachieved is debatable, but coaches and players are to be commended for their efforts.

— The Tabor College men’s basketball team and Coach Don Brubacher had an outstanding season, capped off by a good showing in the national tournament.

Although the Bluejays will lose a couple of good players to graduation, Tabor should be strong again next season. Two years from now is much less certain unless the coaching staff has a couple of good recruiting years.

— I don’t know how the NAIA can effectively seed teams at its national tournament when so few teams play common opponents.

— KU’s winning streak in Manhattan will end eventually. It’s hard to believe the Jayhawks have won 18 games in a row on K-State’s court.

Nevertheless, I’d say K-State will break that streak before KU wins another football game against KSU.

— Would you believe that Roy Williams averages 27 wins a year? No Kansas State team has ever won 27 games.

— KU had a 12th consecutive 20-win season and it hardly caused a ripple.

How do you spell spoiled?

— Some say that Hillsboro sports fans are spoiled. It’s true, but I’m not sure it’s necessarily a bad thing.

I always tell my parents that they spoiled me rotten and I loved every minute of it. The key is to enjoy it and to avoid becoming obnoxious about it.

— Sub-state was double trouble for Hesston High School this year. Both varsity teams lost in the finals. That’s got to be frustrating when both teams were good enough to be legitimate contenders for state titles.

— Do you remember Tim Floyd? He was an up-and-coming coaches at Iowa State. He’s since disappeared in the NBA as coach of the Chicago Bulls. Of course, a league worst 11-48 record will tarnish some of the glitter.

Becoming the coach after Michael Jordan retired didn’t help. Jordan could make a lot of coaches look good.

— A TV weather forecast recently called for a trace to nine inches of snow.

That’s like a sports prognosticator going out on a limb and saying, “Any one of 50 teams could win the NCAA basketball tournament this year.”

— “If experience was so important, we’d never have had anyone walk on the moon.” -Doug Rader

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