Category: Sideline Slants

Summer Olympics has room to grow

Americans were captivated by the swimming accomplishments of Michael Phelps during the recent Olympic Games.

While all of the plaudits and attention is well-deserved for winning eight gold medals and setting so many world-record setting performances, can anyone explain why there are so many world records set in swimming?

Of course, all of the attention given to Phelps took some accolades away from other outstanding performances. There are only so many hours of broadcast coverage that television can give, and it?s kind of hard to ignore eight gold medals by one individual.

Although to be fair, it should be noted that Phelps had a little help from his friends in three relay races.

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Paying to run or bike sounds like a racket, at least in summer

Maybe the summer heat is taking its toll. Or, maybe it’s just me. But here are some things I wonder about.

n A number of people from Hillsboro have run marathons or biked across Kansas. Those are impressive accomplishments, but why do you have to pay to participate? It seems like a racket, if you ask me. To my way of thinking, shouldn?t the organizers pay someone to run 26 miles and bike across the state?

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Baseball promos a long series of strikeouts

There are numerous trends in baseball, most of which have little to do with the game.

Bobbleheads are everywhere. That?s OK. That?s one of the better promotions really. But they don?t make bobbleheads like they used to.

A couple of years ago, my cousin sent a Jim Kleinsasser bobblehead doll to me as a present. It was part of a ?Got Milk? promotion using Minnesota Vikings football players. What made the gift special, though, was the typo on the box, which said Joe Kleinsasser.

My bobblehead didn?t stay intact long though. My son Ryan grabbed the doll by the head, the head came off and the doll lost its bobble. However, it still makes for an interesting topic of conversation.

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TC found no outside ADs lining up to come

Tabor College President Jules Glanzer faced a bit of a dilemma. A nationwide search for a new athletic director came up empty. He resolved it by turning to familiar faces and expanding the leadership role of the athletic department. As far as the failed search goes, it turns out that finding someone with the desired skill set wasn?t as easy […]

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Gimmicks to draw fans detract from the actual game

Back in the day when baseball really was America?s pastime, you went to a game to see a game. Nowadays, the game almost is a sideshow to all of the marketing gimmicks and promotions used to draw fans to the ballpark.

Americans love free stuff and they love fireworks. In fact, there are more than 140 fireworks displays across Major League Baseball this season. The Royals have one after every home game played on Friday. The good news is it?s a pretty good show. The bad news is it?s usually better than the game.

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Rules make baseball a most unusual sport

With all due respect to former pro baseball player and broadcaster Joe Garagiola, baseball isn?t just a funny game. It?s also an unusual game.

Name another sport where the dimensions vary from stadium to stadium. Football fields, soccer fields, basketball courts all use standard dimensions. Not so baseball.

Some dimensions are consistent, i.e., the distance between bases and the distance from the home plate to the pitching rubber. But ballparks are not created equal.

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There’s no instant replay in baseball, but it is on the way

Two recent sports-related stories naturally caught my attention, which started a lively discussion with my agent, I.M. Slick.

One story said the NBA will fine players next season for clear cases of flopping. The other involved the likelihood of Major League Baseball using replay in some situations.

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Nobility rules the day

If you were Mallory Hol?tman, what would you do? Holtman, a four-year starter on the softball team, owns just about every major offensive record there is to claim in Central Washington?s record book. Now, with her own opportunity for a first postseason appearance very much hinging on the outcome of her final game at home, something most unusual transpired.

Western Oregon senior Sara Tucholsky had a homerless college career while Holtman was her school?s career home run leader.

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Pro sports salaries keep on burgeoning

Maybe it?s not all about the money, but when it comes to sports, the almighty dollar still has plenty of clout.

Perhaps there?s some consolation, albeit miniscule, that rising gas and food prices won?t render major professional athletes or coaches among the working poor anytime in the near future.

Consider that New York Yankees star Alex Rodriguez makes more this year than his entire hometown Florida Marlins team.

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KU Basketball title proves all the world needs now is love

Everyone loves a winner, right? Well, yes and no. When KU returned to the throne as king of college men?s basketball, newspapers were full of praise for KU?s accomplishments. Fans celebrated the remarkable and exciting conclusion to a great basketball game and season. The airwaves on radio sports talk shows were filled with basketball banter.

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