We get no respect."
That's the card football teams love to play. Trust me, even Alabama was telling itself that it gets no respect. And if Notre Dame wasn't saying it, the Foldin' Irish should be saying it now.
But there is another sport that has a legitimate gripe about lacking respect. That's wrestling (the unscripted kind), which apparently is going to be kicked out of the Olympics.
Wrestling, at least, is not going quietly into the night as countries as diverse as the United States and Iran are uniting in protest. One wrestler just returned his Olympic gold medal from 1996 even though the only result of that may be that he now has a conspicuously bare spot on his mantel.
And here is the sad truth: The protests probably won't matter and the rest of us will quickly forget wrestling ever was an Olympic sport. Don't believe me? Here are some sports that once were in the Olympics but are not now:
• Power boating — Yes, in the London Olympics of 1908. I don't think they included bass fishing but who remembers?
Jeu de paume — I'm told the sports' name is French for "game of the palm." Before you hide this column from your kids, apparently it's tennis without rackets or handball without walls. It, too, ended in 1908 so I'm beginning to think that must have been a jolly time in London.
Polo — Actually in five Olympics, ending in 1936. Get this: the horses won medals although I can't find out if they got to be on the medals stand.
Others included cricket (only 1900 in Paris), golf (1900 and 1904), lacrosse (1904 and '08), and my personal favorite: tug-of-war (six times ending in 1920).
Don't forget 'demonstration sports'
The Olympics often include demonstrations of sports, usually supported by folks who hope their sport will become a regular on the Olympic schedule. These sports have included:
Jai alai — My all-time favorite sport was a legitimate part of the 1900 Olympics and a demonstration sport (as Basque pelota) in 1924, '68 and '92.
Lifesaving in 1900. — Seriously. I'm told it is part of the World Games now and includes the thrilling "saving a manikin" maneuver.
Gliding — It actually was elevated to an official Olympic sport for the 1940 Games. Alas, there were no '40 Games due to another numerical event: World War II.
So, if you love a sport that is not getting any respect now -- never. give. up. Although if you are thinking World of Warcraft, you might need to wait until the rest of us catch up to your advanced competitive stage.
Greatest TV dramas
You can read about the Oscars elsewhere. The current issue of "TV Guide" includes an all-time Top 10 list of TV dramas, which includes: 10, "Thirtysomething;" 9, "ER;" 8, "The Defenders;" 7, "The West Wing;" 6, "Mad Men;" 5, "The Wire;" 4, "The Twilight Zone;" 3, "Masterpiece;" 2, "The Sopranos;" and 1, "Hill Street Blues."
A classy list — but not my list. Here's my list:
10, "Battlestar Galactica" (the remake); 9, "Star Trek: The Next Generation;" 8, "Magnum, P.I.;" 7, "Doctor Who;" 6, "The Twilight Zone;" 5, "Lost;" 4, "Deadwood;" 3, "Buffy the Vampire Slayer," 2, "The X-Files;" and the best show there ever will be, 1, "Star Trek (the original)."
As you can see, I'm always looking for the intellectual challenge.
Magic TV matching record
Thanks to sportsbusinessdaily.com, we have NBA midseason stats for teams' local TV ratings — and the Orlando Magic are about where you would expect. Of the 30 teams, the Magic are 28th in average audience size at 15,500 households (a drop of 18,200 from 2011, the last full season). At the bottom are Milwaukee (13,600) and Charlotte (7,200).
Are you 'inmessionante?'
Varied are the cool ways to be recognized: A statue, on the side of a bus or the side of a blimp, on a billboard, on a poster in the post office, etc. One of the best ways is to have a word created to describe your skill. That has happened to soccer superstar Lionel Messi. A Spanish dictionary (with advertising support from Pepsi) has added "inmessionante," which apparently means "as great as Messi" and closely resembles "impresionante," which is Spanish for "impressive."
We could do it, too. How about "Lebronian?"
Speaking of new words, Marc Daniels came up with a great one on The Beat of Sports: "Mediacized," meaning "to make a person or event into a social media sensation." When this makes next year's dictionary, Daniels deserves recognition.
These are the notes, folks
When the NCAA accused the University of Miami of "lack of institutional control," hopefully Miami replied: "Takes one to know one." Or perhaps a two-word reply that ends in ". . . you."
My friend was blaming himself for everything bad that happened around him. I talked him into seeing a shrink and it was going well — until the shrink jumped off a bridge and left a note blaming my friend.
No talk this year about the Wonderlic Test? Do we no longer want to know which quarterback got a 6? Are we growing up? I hope not. Where's the fun in that?
The Joliet (Ill.) Slammers of the Frontier Baseball League have offered a contract to Michael Jordan in hopes he will try to hit a curve ball one more time. He'd get $1,600 a month plus a "host family" if needed. Also a 23-person suite for home games that includes all-you-can-eat hot dogs, hamburgers and, get this, mustard potato salad. How can he turn it down?
It is past time for Tony Stewart to win the Daytona 500.
Favorite coach Jacque Vaughn quote of the week: "We had a lot of bright spots through the course of the night." Translation: Nobody sought sanctuary by becoming a monk.
If Jerry tried to become a monk, he'd keep tripping on the bottom of his robe. So he'll keep his day job on The Beat of Sports, hosted by Marc Daniels from 9 a.m. to noon weekdays on 740theGame radio. And he will be back next Sunday with another Cheap Seats. Send kind thoughts to email@example.com and have a great Sunday watching the 500 or the Oscars, depending upon which kind of crashes suites your fancy.