Let us apply to local sports the yin-yang theory of Chinese philosophy, which is that seemingly opposite forces are interconnected. You know: Light and dark, fire and water, life and death to which I would add, excellence and crappiness.
Can we truly enjoy and appreciate the yin of excellence without the yang of crappiness? I think not. If all of our teams were as great as the Heat, for example, the Heat would not seem as great, right?
Therefore, I am here in appreciation of Saturday’s Yang Bowl of college football, in which host Southern Mississippi and our own Florida International University brought matching 0-4 records and epic awfulness to bear. I am not being mean. Well, OK, you got me. I am being mean, but also factual. FIU entered having been outscored by a 187-23 total. Southern Miss entered having lost 16 games in a row and having committed 15 turnovers in this year’s four.
It was the weekend nadir of American sports.
It also was the Conference USA opener for both schools. If the C-USA commissioner was in Hattiesburg, Miss., I think he was the guy wearing the false nose and glasses.
This was the game that tested the casually held presumption that, well, somebody’s gotta win!
No matter the outcome, thank you to both teams for sacrificing to represent the yang so that others may yin, and win.• Henderson Alvarez’s no-hitter closing the Marlins’ 100-loss season ended the misery with incongruous celebration. The club then made unused tickets available for sale to collectors, but the souvenirs bore the wrong date. The perfect ending!
• Heat megastar LeBron James said he’d bring back his famous pregame ritual this season, only instead of throwing powder into the air he’ll toss up the tears of Cleveland fans.
• Michael Jordan said that in his prime, he’d have beaten LeBron 1-on-1. Anybody else think Mike should shut up and concentrate a little harder on not being the worst owner in professional sports?
• LeBron has a new signature wristwatch, an Audemars Piguet “Royal Oak Offshore Chronograph” that retails for $51,500. For that money, the watch had better tell me the time and also the meaning of life.
• The Heat named Juwan Howard an assistant coach, meaning he’ll be playing about as many minutes as he did last season.
Alex Rodriguez, in the midst of appealing his 211-game PED suspension, sued MLB for “tortious interference,” claiming a “witch hunt” to force him from the sport. I looked up “tortuous interference.” Perhaps A-Rod should look up “personal responsibility.”• The NCAA’s ridiculous, continuing delay in rendering a final decision in the Miami investigation maybe they can blame the government shutdown?
• A Pittsburgh hospital is celebrating “Buctober” by outfitting all newborns in Pirates onesies and red bandanas. I’d be more impressed if Pirates players were dressed like that.
• The new Sports Illustrated has model Kate Upton on the cover along with Braves brothers B.J. and Justin Upton. Didn’t Kate out-hit B.J. this year?
• Michael Hill is the Marlins’ new president of baseball ops, replacing fired Larry Beinfest. That means Hill will make all the personnel decisions for owner Jeffrey Loria to overrule and do what he wants.
• The Ravens could may have reciever Jacoby Jones
• The Saints’ Junior Galette called Miami’s offensive line “weak” and said the Dolphins weren’t very good after Monday’s game, leaving analysts to try and figure out who on earth “Junior Galette” is.
• Hard-hitting 49ers safety Donte Whitner
• Cowboys defenders said they were “sick” of hearing about Peyton Manning. Not as sick as they’ll be of him Sunday between around 4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m..
• New Panthers owner Vincent Viola named his 25-year-old son vice president of hockey operations. I don’t think I’ve thought “hmm” quite like that since 2011, when then-Dolphins coach Tony Sparano named Tony Jr. to his staff.
• Canes quarterback Stephen Morris called the South Florida Bulls a “dirty” team last week. At 0-4, I think “lousy” might also fit.
• I read a story in the Miami Herald about a group of bird-watchers “gazing through binoculars at brown boobies.” Coincidentally, I too have done that.
• Nick Saban suspended Alabama star safety Ha Ha Clinton-Dix for violating team rules. “I don’t find that funny,” said Ha Ha.
• The Minnesota Lynx-Atlanta Dream WNBA Finals start Sunday night. You just try to keep me from watching!
• In golf, the Presidents Cup began in Ohio, with the Uniteed States leading early over the International team thanks to an run of birdies by Dwight D. Eisenhower.
• Tiger Woods befriended a squirrel nicknamed “Sammy” at the Presidents Cup, photographed holding the furry creature on his shoulder. (Um, is Tiger unaware that squirrels are rodents that can be disease-carrying biters?)
• Parting thought: The University of Miami officially dedicated its new $14.7 million, 35,000-square foot Greg Cote Center for Athletic Excellence. Wait. Something about that sentence is obviously wrong. It’s 34,000 square feet.
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