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Tuesday, June 01, 2004

INsite: The Pregame Tailgate (June 2004) 

***(note: the June issue of INsite hits stands later this week)***

The summer malaise has already set in, and it’s only June! Yes, I’m too lazy to write an actual column, so I’ve decided to dip into the TPT mailbox and answer some letters from my readers (i.e., my friends).

What do you do with all of your free time now that there are no good sports to watch? How do you deal with the dead season? –Ghouled

The WNBA isn’t a good sport to watch? I thought “They Got Next”? Seriously, though, who has free time? Between watching the Astros and blogging about the Astros, I could actually use a few more hours in the day.

What is the stupidest sport out there...besides Baseball? Will there ever be another MNF sideline reporter as hot as Melissa Stark? Who will win the Super Bowl this year and who will get the first pick in the next draft? –Porter

a) Stupidest sport: The WNBA. Wait, you said sport. I’ll go with NASCAR. And don’t think I didn’t notice that snide anti-baseball remark.
b) No MNF reporter will equal Melissa Stark, unless ABC convinces Jessica Alba to forgo Hollywood and play sidekick to John Madden.
c) I don’t know about the Super Bowl, maybe New England again. I just know it won’t be Philly. I’ll take San Diego to pick first again.

Which would be better...and don't factor into the equation which sport you think is better or your skill level on either....playing a round of golf with Tiger Woods or playing a tennis match against Anna Kournikova? -MC

Tiger, easy. If this were, “who would you like to wrestle in a pool of jello?” then I would take Anna. But lobbing balls at her from 60 feet wouldn’t seem all that thrilling to me.

Do Cowboy fans really think that they have a chance again this year of doing really anything or are they all just got their heads so far in the clouds they really just have no clue? And we all know who is the hottest athlete which is Anna Kornikova but is there really anyone else who get's even anywhere close? -David

Dallas will challenge for a playoff spot again, but they’re still a year or two away from challenging for a championship. I have to disagree about Anna, though. I would take UT’s Cat Osterman in a heartbeat. In fact, Osterman and USA Softball teammate Jenny Finch would present one hell of a “double play” opportunity.

What do you think of Smarty Jones' chance to capture the Triple Crown at Belmont this year? Also, do you consider horse racing to be a real sport? -Evan Ochs

Horse racing is definitely a sport. If eleven guys kicking a ball around for two hours qualifies as a sport, then so does racing. And Smarty is going to win the Triple Crown going away. The field will only have about five other horses, which tells me that rival owners know they can’t compete.

Has expansion done irreparable damage to sports in general (MLB, NBA and to a lesser extent the NFL) and in hindsight will it be the determining factor in the demise of the NHL? -Sanchez in South Austin

Expansion has been the bane of pro sports. I know that a lot of people rail about diluted talent pools but I don’t think it’s that big of a problem. Expansion’s real problem has been that it introduced garbage like Interleague play in baseball, while lessening some of the classic rivalries. I haven’t followed the NHL closely enough in recent years to know if it’s headed toward a demise. But I do know that Tampa Bay-Calgary is the lamest Stanley Cup Finals match-up that I can remember. Tampa Bay? Please.

What is over/ under on how many interceptions chris simms will throw this year? -Pope

Apparently this message has been floating around cyberspace for a few years; it was just finally delivered. Simms probably won’t get enough playing time to throw any picks, but he’ll certainly see the field more than Pope’s hero, Major Applewhite.

Have you come to terms with the fact that your sphincter, depending on the circumstances, can function as both a voluntary muscle and an involuntary muscle? –Kevin

No, I haven’t come to terms with that. But ask me again after the Longhorns or Astros have ever won anything of consequence.


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