A look at the top sports stories in The Herald:
Victory and valor
Herald writer Scott M. Johnson’s three-part series on the 1947 Everett Junior College football team and the men who made up its ranks finishes today. In the final part of the series, the Evergreen Bowl concludes and Scott takes a look at what some of the men ended up doing after their playing days were over, including Archie Van Winkle, a Darrington High grad, who went on to earn the Congressional Medal of Honor after serving his country in the Korea War. The Closer thought it was nice to be able to shed a few tears over something he read in the newspapers instead of something he read about the newspaper industry.
The hurt Locker
UW head coach Steve Sarkisian said Monday that quarterback Jake Locker may be forced to sit out Saturday’s game against UCLA due to a deep thigh bruise. With all the trouble Rick Neuheisel is having down in L.A., where he’s got the Bruins off to an 0-5 start in the conference, the Huskies may be OK with Ronnie Fouch behind center. Plus how nice would it be to show up his old “mentor” by beating him with a backup. Of course The Closer thinks that’s all a crock. He hasn’t seen a smokescreen this obvious since ol’ Billy B. in New England claimed Tom Brady was “questionable” for the entire 2007 season.
Mora the same
Seahawks head coach Jim Mora was repeating inspirational quotes again Monday, a day after his team suffered another loss on the road and dropped to 2-5 on the season. At this rate, Mora’s going to be in a rocking chair on his porch repeating the phrase “We’re going to find out who the strong people are real soon.” over and over again under his breath.
Walk on, brother
Former Archbishop Murphy post player Brendan Sherrer was the only walk-on added to the University of Washington men’s basketball team roster. Huskies head coach Lorenzo Romar said of Sherrer: “He’s got size and that is something that will help us when practicing.” Yeah, that and carrying Isaiah Thomas’ bags.
THE WARMUP PITCH
Phillies aren’t dead yet
Chase Utley hit two more home runs, tying Reggie Jackson’s home run mark in a World Series, and the Philadelphia Phillies hung on to beat the New York Yankees 8-6 Monday night. The Series heads back to New York for Games 6 Wednesday night, and a possible 7 Thursday night. The most interesting topic after Monday’s game was the possibility of Utley being named MVP even if his team loses. That’d be fitting. Alex Rodriguez has the postseason of his life and the losing team has the MVP.
Saints hang on
The Falcons made a late charge, including a perfectly executed onside kick by Western Washington alum Michael Koenen, but New Orleans denied Atlanta and won the Monday Nighter 35-27 to remain unbeaten at 7-0. You’re just lucky you don’t have the Seahawks on your schedule this season, Saints fans.
Browns GM sleeps with the fishes
Cleveland Browns general manager George Kokinis, the hand-picked GM of first-year head coach Eric Mangini, left the team under unexplained circumstances on Monday, a day after the Browns dropped to 1-7. Kokinis, who was rarely seen or heard around Browns’ headquarters, was reportedly escorted from team headquarters. The Closer won’t be a bit surprised if Mangini, who once made a cameo on The Sopranos, is fitted for a pair of cement shoes soon.
Sponsor the best
After losing its sponsorship last week, the U.S. Olympic Speedskating team got a surprise from late-night host Stephen Colbert, who stepped up and made “Colbert Nation” its new sponsor. For a surprisingly touching moment, watch the video below:
The Closer will never be mistaken for a University of Oregon fan, but even he had to admit that what Chip Kelly pulled before the USC game on Halloween was pretty fantastic. (Watch below). Now if Steve Sarkisian can just jump on King Redoubt and ride him into Husky Stadium to the cheering masses, The Closer will die happy.
In honor of Stephen Colbert’s sponsoring of the U.S. Olympic Speedskating team, The Closer came up with the top five sports he’d most want to put his name to:
1. Curling. Any sport that can incorporate brooms is right in The Closer’s wheelhouse.
2. Biathlon. Again any sport that can mix skiing and shooting a rifle sounds like the perfect sport for The Closer.
3. Luge. The Closer wouldn’t mind substituting the sled for a barcalounger, but you get the point.
4. Skeleton. The forward luge has the best name in sports — hands down.
5. Ski jumping. In honor of Eddie Eagle.